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Chameleon Cafe, Classical Bistro in Lauraville


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#1 fayrehair

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Posted 28 January 2009 - 01:05 AM

So I just got back from dinner at chameleon cafe for the second time, this place is amazing. The first time I went they were doing the baltimore menu with dishes like maryland chicken and fried bluefish. This time though it was pretty much all classic french, very impressive, had an oxtail and onion soup that was really rich, i mean pure stock rich. Moved from there to an assortment of grilled lettuces including romaine and endives with walnuts and an herb vinaigrette. my boyfriend had a perfectly executed tart of leeks and olives alongside simply dressed arugula. his soup was home-style kale and bean, fortifying but lacking salt. the main dishes themselves were standard meat and two veg options however they were collectively mind blowing. when's the last time anyone had a braised shortrib that just sighed when you met it with a fork?! seriously. silken reduction sauces for my shortribs and his grilled steak. boiled red potatoes and potato gratin. brocolini. anywhere else these entrees wouldn't have been worth any notice. here, they were restored to their rightful standard. sexy, simply, honest. this place feeds its guests with heart. right in the middle of nowhere baltimore none the less. oh, and this rich experience cost 35 bucks a person. so we got fed and kept our pride after signing the check. we'll be going back soon.

#2 Joe H

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Posted 30 April 2011 - 10:19 PM

So I just got back from dinner at chameleon cafe for the second time, this place is amazing. The first time I went they were doing the baltimore menu with dishes like maryland chicken and fried bluefish. This time though it was pretty much all classic french, very impressive, had an oxtail and onion soup that was really rich, i mean pure stock rich. Moved from there to an assortment of grilled lettuces including romaine and endives with walnuts and an herb vinaigrette. my boyfriend had a perfectly executed tart of leeks and olives alongside simply dressed arugula. his soup was home-style kale and bean, fortifying but lacking salt. the main dishes themselves were standard meat and two veg options however they were collectively mind blowing. when's the last time anyone had a braised shortrib that just sighed when you met it with a fork?! seriously. silken reduction sauces for my shortribs and his grilled steak. boiled red potatoes and potato gratin. brocolini. anywhere else these entrees wouldn't have been worth any notice. here, they were restored to their rightful standard. sexy, simply, honest. this place feeds its guests with heart. right in the middle of nowhere baltimore none the less. oh, and this rich experience cost 35 bucks a person. so we got fed and kept our pride after signing the check. we'll be going back soon.

 

My wife and I had dinner at the Chameleon tonight. It is a shame that only 309 people read the above review in the two plus years since it was first posted. This is an outstanding restaurant that was well worth the drive from Reston. Never mind the second highest food rating in Baltimore from Zagat (27 points; only Charleston at 28 was higher), the chef being trained at the original Emeril's on Tschoupolitas street in the '90's and an obsessive commitment to farm to table with almost every ingredient sourced nearby-this is worth the adventurous trip from D. C. It is a small mom and pop" owned restaurant of great character in a nondescript townhouse four miles northeast of downtown Baltimore. There are also three two tops wedged into the aisle adjacent to the narrow kitchen that are worth asking for. Expect food the equal of Palena, frying as "high art' to compete with Black Salt and a bill which will be a fraction of what you would find here.

Worthy of more than 309 views, worthy of a trip from D. C. In fact I would suggest the Komi of Baltimore.



#3 Joe H

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Posted 11 December 2011 - 10:28 AM

Two and a half stars from Tom and we're up to 483 views. A real shame that more people haven't discovered the Chameleon. It's worth the drive from D. C. on its own-yes. it's THAT good!

#4 Justin Bittner

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 06:39 PM

Chamelon cafe is no more, this is bullshit. And I'm sorry if I'm not allowed to curse on here but it's now called Maggie's farm and has completely revamped the menu. Last time I went I thought they maybe just had an off night and was totally forgiving. I loved loved loved this place, the techniques used and classic French style fed my soul. Now it seems they're just trying to be some trendy place in a hipster filled neighborhood. I've gladly dropped 75 bucks a person here. Not anymore. This is very upsetting to me.

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#5 DonRocks

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 12:51 AM

Chamelon cafe is no more, this is bullshit. And I'm sorry if I'm not allowed to curse on here but it's now called Maggie's farm and has completely revamped the menu. Last time I went I thought they maybe just had an off night and was totally forgiving. I loved loved loved this place, the techniques used and classic French style fed my soul. Now it seems they're just trying to be some trendy place in a hipster filled neighborhood. I've gladly dropped 75 bucks a person here. Not anymore. This is very upsetting to me.

 

[Justin, do you know if it's the same ownership with a different name? Or a new ownership with a different name? It makes the difference of the same thread, versus a separate thread.]


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#6 1000yregg

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 09:30 AM

I hear Maggie's Farm is all new. I believe the Chameleon folks were involved with the transition, but not it's its own entity


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#7 Justin Bittner

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 10:36 AM

So when I went it was still called chamelon cafe, but the nice stemware had been replaced by tumblers and the menu felt like something you might make as a school project. And the food felt miles apart for what I remember. I assumed it was a bad night and vowed to return. Upon looking up the website again I found it was now Maggie's farm, and that they were in transition.

Justin Bittner

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8407 Kitchen Barwebsite - Facebook - @8407





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