Pen & Quill

4.3
307 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Since opening in late 2014, Pen & Quill has received numerous awards, excellent reviews and has become one of Baltimore's top restaurants. P&Q restaurant in the Station North Arts District is named after the cocktail lounge within the old Chesapeake Restaurant, which flourished on the corner of Charles and Lanvale streets during the 1950s and the 1960s. The restaurant features an extensive bar with unique cocktails, eclectic dining area showcasing local artists and an exciting menu.
What 307 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.3
service
4.4
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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NE
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 3

Very nice place to eat and drink. But if your having dinner, avoid the Friday and Saturday bar crowd. Very noisy!

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BE
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

We had a Valentine's Day/ post engagement dinner at Pen & Quill (We love the fried oyster steam buns!) We were on time, but our reservation was ready upon arrival and we were greeted with a "congratulations" and two glasses of champagne, which was such a nice touch. The service was prompt and friendly, although we were really there to take our time and hang out. The atmosphere is classy, yet relaxed, so we enjoyed just having a few drinks and celebrating a little before we ordered. We would definitely recommend this place for a nice evening out.

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C
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 5

Very good food, wine and ambiance. Only issue we had was that our food was sent out to the wrong table so we had a very long wait. The waitress apologized and asked if she could get us anything while we waited. When the food did come out it was very good!

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ML
New England
2 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

It is in a convenient location if you want to head to the movies, or need to catch a train at Penn station. The appetizers and small plates are spot on. They also have a great happy hour if you are into cocktails. They also have a good beer list, which I used to enjoy all the time. But now that I am trying to cut back on gluten, I wish they had a more expansive cider selection. Graft is everywhere, I wish they had something else.

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T
Indiana
8 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

In my experience the service has always been excellent. I had the best prime rib sandwich I've ever had. No fat,yet tender!

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s
Baltimore
13 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 4

Went to Pen&Quill last Saturday for dinner. For our meal we ordered the fish sandwich and the Cuban sandwich. I realize anything deep fried is going to have some grease but the fish was overly greasy. The Cuban was grilled and grease was pouring out of it. They also only put the pickle slices on one half of the sandwich. The positives are the mulled wine, side salad and French fries were really very good

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M
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

We thought we could grab a quick bite before catching a movie next door, but we were wrong. After waiting an hour and 20 minutes for our food, we had no choice but to leave. While my girlfriend was next door grabbing seats in the theater, I waited for the kitchen to pack up our food so we could EAT IT IN THE MOVIE THEATER. Something they said was common. Popcorn during a movie? Of course. Candy? Yeah, alright. Wings and steak tartare? C'mon! Our server was great, but it's clear that the kitchen was understaffed. They seem to prioritize easy to cook meals over "complex" dishes. Meaning: If you want to be in and out, or have a movie to catch -- stick with the nachos.

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K
1 review
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 5

I love the food here, me and my roommates found it when the kitchen at the brass tap had over an hour wait and it is such a gem. Their fried chicken sandwhich is the best ive ever had and every new thing I try seems to be better than the last. The cocktails are great and everything is a reasonable price for the quality. Get something with the rosemary garlic fries if you can, theyre to die for. That being said its not perfect, I went there last for my birthday and everyone at my table ordered a different dessert to share. They ranged from mediocre to terrible. I don’t know how they managed to make such a flavorless creme brulee, and their limoncello cheesecake had a weird almost curdled texture and barely any lemon flavor. I’m also pretty sure the cheesecake WAS curdled cause we all had stomach aches shortly after and that was the only suspicious thing. The service was pretty slow, which I’m not picky about but at the end when we wanted our check it took almost 40 minutes to get it. I am paitent with wait staff, hell one of my friends with me is a waitress, but the girl we had was overworked with 5 tables and couldnt manage it. Anyway, excellent dinner and drinks, avoid dessert and be chill about a wait.

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D
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a fantastic find. The food was so delicious, the service fantastic, and their wine selection as one of the best I’ve seen in the area. Portions are very big and wonderful. The lighting made everybody look good. We will definitely come back.

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L
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Fun restaurant with great and engaging servers, excellent food and great wine & beer list. What else would anyone want/need?!

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SP
Baltimore
66 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 2

The flatbreads were overcooked and slightly burnt. Service was slow and unenthusiastic. Other than its proximity to the Charles Theater there is no reason to go here

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 5

A group of us went to Pen & Quill for New Years. I had been there before and had decent food. However, the quality of food was just that- decent, run of the mill cuisine. For the price point, other restaurants with similar menus have had more flavor and items with better flavor. My husband and I ordered the brussel sprout and fried shrimp basket small plates as a stater for the table. While the shrimp were good, one of them looked as if it had been left in the drier for double the time and came out nearly black. The brussel sprouts were slightly under cooked, making them hard at the base, with the leaves soft and slightly mushy, having been heavily flavored with heavily balsamic vinegar. I ordered the fried fish sandwich and my husband ordered the burger. The burger was flavorful, but nothing to write home about. The trout, though fried, had the skin left on. This was something unexpected and unusual, though not bad. The fish itself did not have a ton of flavor, leaving the tartar sauce to be the main flavor of the plate. Both of us got the rosemary fries as a side, however they did not have as much flavor as I remember from my last visit. The service was attentive, friendly, and overall very good. The drinks and the honey graham ice cream were the highlight of the evening for our party of 5.

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e
Baltimore
5 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We frequent The Charles movie theater and usually go to Tapas Teatro, so P&Q makes a nice alternative. Both are owned by the Karzai family who are excellent restauranteurs. We are big fans. You can't go wrong in either place. The great place about this one is that you can make a reservation which you can't do at Tapas.

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k
Baltimore
107 reviews
Dined on December 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great flat bread, great burger! Love happy hour!

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d
New York Area
36 reviews
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very well executed food. Great service.

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TS
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was excellent, the service was excellent, the ambiance was excellent, and the restaurant was not too noisy.

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M
Baltimore
1 review
Dined on November 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Birthday celebration
Menu is small but food was delicious. Service was great

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LK
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved it!
The food and service were excellent.
Will go back.

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m
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The food and beverage were excellent. The service was very good and very helpful. I didn't care much for the way the servers and bar staff were dressed, too casual.

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T
Indiana
9 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 3

Great service, good food,and good portion size. The seafood gumbo tasted good,but there was too much sausage and not enough crab and shrimp. The pork belly buns were outstanding. The menu was a little limited and the restaurant was loud,but not disturbingly so. We would definitely return.

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GB
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Our first time there because we had 7 p.m. tickets and needed to be sure of a reservation on a Friday.
The Tapas place where we usually go doesn't take reservations. We were immediately impressed by the comfortable and spacious layout and tables and booths with a distance from the bar. The food was good and fairly priced. The service was fantastic. We will definitely go again.

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SB
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 3

Green gazpacho was superb. Best fries in recent dining experiences. Burger needed better seasoning. Lemoncell dessert disappointing.

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k
Baltimore
107 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

The mussels were great! We love Naomi's warm hospitality each time we're here. Love the wine, beer, and spirit selection as well.

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c
Baltimore
24 reviews
Dined on August 21, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

We had a dinner reservation for a business meal--getting to know a new colleague. The restaurant was not full, which made it easy to converse. I'd love to see them promote the restaurant with discounts for students and faculty of the local universities/colleges (if they don't already do so). The location is quite nice and I imagine with more visibility they could do very well.
This is not a restaurant I'd go out of my way for to enjoy, but the university being nearby made it an attractive choice. The meal was quite good and my colleagues who chose the cobb salad made us all jealous! No one complained about food and several who drank wine or beer enjoyed their choices.

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OT
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Menu interesting but food a bit bland but ok.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great, attentive server who knew when to pour the wine. All you can ask for

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OT
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed wine and plates before the theater. Service was attentive. Food was delicious. We will return.

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b
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service food ambiance. Ease of making a reservation.

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NE
Baltimore
4 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 2

I love P&Q but the last time we went it was so noisy I could hardly hear people sitting near me. Even though it was restaurant week most people were at the bar or in the lounge area drinking. This seems to happen a lot on the weekend. If you want to have a meal it can be annoying. It is one of the few restaurants that can accommodate a large group, but the noise makes it hard to enjoy the meal.
It would be nice if they could put us in the ping pong room (which never seems to be used).

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OT
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Enjoyed my first visit. Service was great, the Southern Summer cocktail was so so tasty, my fish sandwich was a little dry but good. I will return for sure!

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M
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on July 16, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

The fish was absolutely outstanding. Chardonnay so-so. The place was quiet when we arrived (5:30 pm on a Monday) and gradually got louder.

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k
Baltimore
107 reviews
Dined on June 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

All our food was great! The service was warm and prompt. Looking forward to trying more of the flatbreads!

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TD
New York Area
24 reviews
Dined on June 23, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Food was terrific as is the vibe of this neighborhood gem. Creative menu has unique tastes. Worth coming into the City to try.

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k
Baltimore
107 reviews
Dined on June 18, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Great happy hour with food before our movie. Excellent service!

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JL
1 review
Dined on June 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place, with a wonderful, roomy atmosphere and fabulous food and wine selection.

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t
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined on June 1, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 1ambience 4

Went there before a show at the Metro Gallery. Food was ok, service sucked, waited 15 minutes for a Bootle beer. I won't be going there again. The best part was their location to parking and the venue.

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NE
Baltimore
4 reviews
Dined on May 27, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

The restaurant has been very accommodating to the group that I run. We go there frequently after seeing a film at the nearby theater. The servers are very helpful. We always enjoy our food and the atmosphere is nice.

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SB
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 3

Food was pretty good and could be great with some tweaking. The mushroom flat bread was delicious but seasoning of other food was somewhat uneven. Deviled egg was too salty. Burger was under salted. Lemon flavor in spongecake dessert needs a boost. It was a Friday night so we expected noise but wished there had been a nice quiet table for two somewhere. We’ll come back again but ask for a quiet space.

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OT
Baltimore
1 review
Dined on May 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Place was fantastic, in all sense of the word. Will 100% be back.

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a
Baltimore
20 reviews
Dined on May 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I eat at Pen & Quill frequently and I've never been disappointed. It has a a menu that should accommodate all tastes and budgets. The service and food are always excellent. Great place to go before or after a film at the Charles.

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