Thursday, March 4, 2010

Bare Bones in Ellicott City

Bare Bones Grill & Brewery is the kind of place to visit when you can provide the inspiration for the night.

Everyone once in a while, I just get in the mood for onion rings and barbecue ribs.  We rode that craving to Bare Bones on Rte 40 in Ellicott City, and we left feeling sated and satisfied.

First came the onion loaf.  Not rings, but more a pile of battered onion pieces deep fried and served with a horseradish-flavored sauce.  Hot, the onion loaf was exactly what I wanted.  We pulled out individual "rings," and the onion was sweet and moist.  After about half, I could feel the oil coming out of my pores as I smiled, so I pushed the remainder away.

Good thing, because we also ordered a full plate of ribs.  Bare Bones satisfied both side of our divided family.  Mrs. HowChow likes "fall off the bone" ribs -- for example Lone Star Steakhouse in Columbia.  I'd rather chew a little to avoid meat that has become soft and flavorless in the oven -- for example Kloby's off Rte 29 or Pappy's Smokehouse that I discovered when I was stuck in St. Louis.  Bare Bones delivered on both accounts -- tender and flavorful, with a pretty good cole slaw and an unusual fritter made by deep-frying kernels of corn.

We left with satisfied, although I can't say that Bare Bones delivered much more than the bar food that we had been craving.  There is a plain, basic dining room and a loud bar that looked like the Looney's for the 50s set.  But I wasn't that inspired by the menu -- or that wowed that I'd hunt that menu for delicious surprises.  For our next night out, I don't know that Bare Bones could tempt me to pass the more-interesting beers and the Cuban sandwich at Victoria Gastropub.  For a carnivorous craving on Rte 40, I don't know that it can compete with Korean barbecue or the smokey pit beef at Pioneer.

Consider Bare Bones for a night when you want to satisfy a crowd.  Those ribs -- and the other standard American fare -- will please a wide range of people, including those who might not want to experiment at Shin Chon Garden.  It's also ideal for a table of kids.  You get a beer.  You get some onion ribs.  You get some ribs.  When you're in the mood, that can really work.

Bare Bones Grill & Brewery
9150 Baltimore National Pike
Ellicott City, MD 21042


NEAR:  Bare Bones is on Rte 40 just west of Rte 29.  It is in the Chatham Mall shopping center, which is the huge center just west of St. Johns Lane.  Bare Bones is on the far west side of the center.

Bare Bones Grill & Brewery on Urbanspoon


Anonymous said...

Their prime rib is really good as well. I'd recommend checking that out next time.

BeerGuy said...

Nice review, yeh its a solid overall place, I LOVE those corn fritter things, haven't tried the ribs yet always get the BBQ pulled pork sandwich which is good.

The big thing at Bare Bones is the happy hour, damn near the entire bar gets filled as people line up for the various free food items (wings, pasta, cheese, etc.) available from I think 4-7 PM on weekdays.

Mrs. HowChow said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mrs. HowChow said...

Just wanted to note that the onion rings were ordered (and you see pictured) as the "1/2 Onion Loaf". Yes, that's the HALF loaf. As noted, we could barely eat a quarter of it.

Just thought this might be helpful for those who don't typically eat 100 onion rings at one sitting.

Happy eating.

Anonymous said...

Bare Bones also brews their own root beer, which is well worth the visit. I agree, the corn fritters are unusual; I used to get fritters like that as a kid in the Baltimore area, but this is the only place I know that serves them now.

David P

MaybeKathy said...

I second the vote for the house-brewed Root Beer. It's excellent. Their French Onion Soup is pretty good too.

FoodBooty said...

I like Bare Bones but I wish they would add to their menu or change it up a bit. I think it's the same menu as when it opened.

Love their corn fritters and their beer battered mozzarella sticks!