Ellicott City is a quaint and historical suburb of Baltimore, where you can transport back in time to the 19th century.
Ellicott City houses the oldest train station in the United States, located in the middle of the colonial city center.
Its picturesque location in the Patapsco Valley gives you access to gorgeous state parks with wooded trails along its many lakes and rivers.
After getting my fill of nature and history, the next item on the agenda was finding a restaurant for a delicious meal and a cozy environment.
I found an incredible variety of cuisines and atmospheres to compile the below list of the best restaurants in Ellicott City.
8293 Main St, Ellicott City, MD 21043
Located in the heart of Ellicott Historic District, Tersiguel’s French Country Restaurant is a fine-dining French restaurant inside a historic, colonial white brick townhouse building. The interior has tasteful country-chic décor and candle-lit tables with white tablecloths.
Tersiguel’s is a farm-to-table bistro using the freshest seasonal ingredients from local farms to create traditional European dishes.
Tersigue’s has a full cocktail bar and a pre-fixe six-course menu with all the classic French favorites. I loved their escargot with garlic, shallots, butter, and wine.
3733 Old Columbia Pike, Ellicott City, MD 21043
Manor Hill Tavern is a local favorite for great beer and hearty bar fare. Located in a series of 19th-century buildings with colorful brick and shingle facades in Old Ellicott City, Manor Hill Tavern maintains the historic feel while lining the old brick and stone walls with local art.
The atmosphere is casual, cozy, and family-friendly. Manor Hill has a sister brewery that supplies small-batch brews to accompany a diverse menu of high-quality American meals.
There are nine beers on tap from Manor Hills brewery. The menu has everything from wood-fired pizzas to salads to burgers.
I couldn’t get enough of the street fries, thick-cut French fries topped with bacon, sriracha aioli, corn salsa, pickled jalapenos, chives, and smoked tomato ranch.
2700 Turf Valley Rd, Ellicott City, MD 21042
Alexandra’s is an American fusion restaurant inside the lovely Turf Valley Resort with a bright and airy dining space and outdoor deck overlooking a golf course.
Alexandra’s sources their meat and produce from local farms to create many creative twists on American comfort food.
Alexandra’s serves breakfast, lunch, Sunday brunch buffet, and dinner with different daily specials like Thursday Steak nights.
In addition, there’s live music on Fridays and Saturdays during the dinner hour. I delighted in their crab cake sandwich on a toasted brioche bun with house-made tartar.
11099 Resort Road #304, Ellicott City, MD 21042
Located next to Turf Valley Towne Square, Grille 620 is a fashionable fine-dining seafood restaurant and cocktail lounge.
Its industrial-meets-rustic chic décor and smooth background music offer a lively yet refined atmosphere. There’s also a stunning outdoor patio space overlooking the surrounding forests.
Grille 620 serves multi-course seafood and steak meals with Mediterranean flavors and expertly curated cocktails, wines, and local beers.
I started with the grilled octopus with lemon vinaigrette, followed by a delicious dish of scallops with wild mushroom fricassee, cauliflower puree, basil pesto, and truffle oil.
6 Oella Ave, Ellicott City, MD 21043
The Trolley Stop is a family-owned, family-friendly traditional American restaurant in an old 19th-century Inn and Tavern in Oella Estates.
According to Ellicott City history, there used to be a trolley stop in front of the locale from the late 1800s till 1955. The Trolley Stop serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
The small, traditional breakfast menu has a small selection of American favorites like pancakes, French toast, and omelets.
The lunch menu has a massive selection of hot and cold sandwiches, and the dinner menu has budget-friendly steakhouse offerings. I loved their tuna melt on an English muffin.
11085 Resort Road #404, Ellicott City, MD 21042
Mad Chef Kitchen and Bar is a lively and elegant gastropub located directly across the street from Grille 620 in Turf Valley.
Their romantic atmosphere features rustic-chic décor replete with arched doorways and crystal chandeliers. They have the best happy hour in town, where you can mix your own cocktail.
The cocktail menu, wine list, and craft beer menu are top-notch. The cocktails are as stunning and colorful as the beautifully plated food on their New American menu.
I recommend going for happy hour to get a glass of cheap sangria and a plate of tuna taquitos with Korean slaw, spicy mayo, sesame seeds, and miso dressing in a wonton shell.
8210 Main St, Ellicott City, MD 21043
Pure Wine Café is a wine bar and upscale bistro with a colorful variety of charcuterie, cheese, and tapas boards. Located in Old Ellicott City across from the Firehouse Museum, Pure Wine Café has a fun atmosphere, its walls lined with a robust wine collection.
The food is a happy balance between decadent and healthy, with everything from truffle fries to Mediterranean mezze.
I was most impressed by their different grazing boards that give you the option to create your own mix of cured meats, cheeses, pickled veggies, fruits, and compotes to enjoy with crusty bread.
10040 Baltimore National Pike E100, Ellicott City, MD 21042
Owned by Mexican native and chef Ernesto Puga, Ernesto’s Fine Mexican Food is a bright and vibrant restaurant that serves authentic Mexican cuisine and Tex-Mex specialties.
Located just north of Pine Orchard, this colorful restaurant features Mexican-style art, blue-tiled tequila and margarita bar, and thick granite tables.
They have all the Mexican favorites, starting with excellent house-made margaritas. I had a top-shelf margarita with an order of guacamole made tableside with fresh jalapenos and cilantro. For a taste of Tex-Mex, I recommend the brisket tacos with jack cheese, onion, poblanos, and avocado.
9495 Old Annapolis Rd suite a, Ellicott City, MD 21042
Located in Dorsey Search, LeeLynn’s Dining Room and Lounge are a New American restaurant and bar with a spectacular outdoor patio surrounded by greenery and shaded by a wooden patio cover.
The interior is a casual, country-chic space with live music serenading your lunch or happy hour. The family-friendly and casual atmosphere serves low-priced yet high-quality dishes.
I loved the roasted beet salad with red and gold beets, arugula, goat cheese, butternut squash, and dried cranberries with mustard-poppy seed vinaigrette. It was almost too pretty to eat.
Enchanted Forest Shopping Center 100030 National Pike, Ellicott City, MD 21042
The White Oak Tavern is a farm-to-table gastropub with a friendly and casual atmosphere, sourcing its meat, produce, and beer from local farmers and breweries.
Located next door to Ernesto’s Mexican restaurant, The White Oak Tavern has one of the most extensive draughts and imported beer lists in Ellicott City.
Their menu runs the cultural gamut of comforting pub fare, from wings to tacos. I started with an order of house-made baked white cheddar cornbread with chipotle butter and scallions.
Their signature White Oak Burger with dry-aged beef and porter glazed caramelized onions on a brioche bun was a cut above the rest.
8809 Baltimore National Pike, Ellicott City, MD 21043
Located just east of Saint John’s Village, Stella Notte is a family-friendly Italian American restaurant with a cute old-school feel. The dining room looks like a 50s family living room with an atrium-like sunroom at one end.
They offer moderately priced, comforting Italian dishes that remind you of your Italian grandmother’s cooking- even if you don’t have one!
The extensive menu features everything from classic antipasti, pizza, and salads to entrees and pasta. The best part of the pasta menu is that it’s completely customizable.
You can choose the type of pasta, protein, veggie, and sauce. I went with fettuccini topped with chicken and broccoli in a fresh basil pesto sauce.
After meandering through the colonial streets of Old Ellicott City or hiking along the trails in Centennial Park, you can reward your tastebuds with a delectable meal in a lively atmosphere.
Whether you want a fine-dining multi-course meal in a 19th-century building or a heaping plate of enchiladas and a top-shelf margarita in a festive Mexican food restaurant, Ellicott City has excellent restaurant options, and head over to the nearby city of Columbia for even more options!
My list of the best restaurants in Ellicott City will give you all the choices you need to fill up your itinerary. Did we leave a restaurant out of this list?
Make sure you leave us a comment, and we’ll check it out!
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