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Barking Dog Opens Today

New downtown bar and restaurant replacing Thirsty Turtle opened Monday morning.

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.

After speculation on Facebook and Twitter that the was slated to open last week, the downtown bar and restaurant replacing at 7416 Baltimore Ave. opened its doors at 11 a.m. today.

This editor is about to go there to check it out.

Caitlin Latini August 22, 2011 at 04:09 PM
Report back after you check it out! The College Park community wants to know how it is!
Bailey Henneberg August 22, 2011 at 05:42 PM
Hey, I'm a vegetarian, and that even looks good to me.
Alan Hew August 22, 2011 at 09:14 PM
What is the beer menu like? Any good microbrews?
Shannon Hoffman August 23, 2011 at 12:46 AM
So......... I [embarrassingly] don't know much about beer, and I didn't spend much time on the beer menu. I know I enjoy a good Guinness, but they didn't have it on tap. Instead my waiter offered another brew he said was like a Guinness. Again, I don't know much about beer and of course I forget the name of it. But it was very good. According to the website, the Barking Dog in Bethesda offers 12 standard drafts with four that rotate seasonally. The regular beer offered by Barking Dog are listed here: http://www.thebarkingdogonline.com/ (Owner John McManus said in July that the Bethesda menu and the College Park menu would be the same.) Sorry I am not more help on this one!
Linda Lachman August 25, 2011 at 03:07 PM
COLLEGE PARK IS GOING TO THE DOGS! Don't miss Doggie Dive-In from 6 PM - 8 PM on Tuesday, September 6. Well mannered dogs with copy of current rabies vaccination can plunge in the Ellen Linson Pool at 5211 Paint Branch Parkway as it closes for the season. The $4 fee per dog helps animals in the College Park Animal Shelter. Last year's event witnessed about 100 canines have an evening of pure joy!
Sonia Dasgupta (Editor) August 25, 2011 at 10:17 PM
Yumm! I'll def be headed over. I love Mediterranean burgers. The one at Busboys is pretty good too.
Alan Hew August 25, 2011 at 10:39 PM
They seem to have entry level micros mainly from Old Dominion, Bourbon Stout, Victory and Hop Mountain were the ones that stood out. Also Star Hill's Northern Lights IPA, Red Hook Long Hammer IPA, and Kona Brewing's Longboard Lager. It would be nice to see some beers that are above what others offer on their "4 rotating draughts"
SlopeStylz October 23, 2011 at 02:53 AM
Hillarious. The first time I went to this bar I was 16 and used a library card as a "fake ID," back then it was called Terrapin Station. It was shut down, then it became Lupos - italian for wolf. That shut down for the same reason, underage drinking. Then it opened as the Thirsty Turtle. Now it's the Barking Dog. All different names for the same animal if you ask me. Any bar there in College Park will always be half underage kids because half of all undergrads are under 21. Join the Amethyst Initiative, let adults be responsible for themselves.

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