Update 2:29 p.m., Customer reaction:
"It feels kind of weird," said Casey Smith, a University of Maryland senior, as he sat in a booth with his friends at Barking Dog on opening day. "Honestly, I walked in and felt like I shouldn't be here," he said.
Was he betraying the Thirsty Turtle, which used to be at 7416 Baltimore Ave.? The bar came to a last fall. Turtle was cited three times in two years for permitting patrons under the age of 21, culminating in a quadruple stabbing that originated inside the bar and spilled into the streets. .
Barking Dog owner told Patch in July that it's been an .
. It's something that wasn't lost on opening day patron Meaghan Vernick, a UMd. junior.
"It's a little classier than Turtle," she added after having a buffalo chicken wrap and sweet potato fries.
"I thought it was really good," she said, noting that she was able to substitute sides for no additional price.
"The menu is huge," said UMd. senior Oliver Chase after indulging in a steak and cheese sub. He said he feels there are more menu items than any other bar, and they're reasonably priced.
"It's nice to mix it up with Cornerstone," he said.
Update 2:01 p.m., Noteworthy points:
- The service is quick. I wish I would have timed it, but the two tables of three on either of my sides and I all were served in a timely fashion.
- What I've heard from patrons: "There are so many burgers!" while looking at the menu.
- Customers are getting carded upon ordering alcoholic beverages.
- The bar is full, while there's been a modest, yet steady flow of customers in the pub area. Over the past 45 minutes, three multi-person tables (and myself) have been served in the pub. My waiter also said there was a party of about 12 in the "Maryland Room," which is behind the pub.
- My waiter said that so far today, the burgers and the cheesesteak were probably the most popular menu items.
Update 1:43 p.m., Reaction to the food:
The Mediterranean burger, topped with feta cheese, hummus, tomato, lettuce and onion (which I removed) was pretty good, though I'm a sucker for hummus and feta. You could probably put those two ingredients on a sneaker and I'd think it's delicious.
That's not to say the burger was a sneaker. On the contrary. It was good -- satisfying -- but it's safe to say it's not worth writing home about.
The real talk of my plate were the sweet potato fries. They were the perfect amount of crispy and moist, and are definitely rave worthy.
Update 1:21 p.m.
The "Open for Business" sign is out front, and the outline of the "TT" (Thirsty Turtle) on the awning has been replaced by a Barking Dog emblem.
Most importantly, I have a delicious looking Mediterranean burger sitting on the table next to me. It'll last long enough for me to take a picture and upload, and then it will be gone (if it tastes as good as it looks).
Update 11:19 a.m.
This editor is about to go there to check it out.