Clavel in Remington neighborhood of Baltimore

We have been to Clavel for drinks and food before and it was wonderful. We got to talk to the beverage director, Dre and he told us about the mezcal tasting program at the tasting bar on Tuesdays. After a few false starts, Kay and I went tonight. The cost is $50 per person including gratuity and tax. We got 5 or 6 tastes of Mezcal, about an ounce per taste. Several of the spirits were served in unlabeled bottles and were quite amazing. The various mezcals had incredibly different flavor profiles, from herbal and green, to yogurty and fruity to sweet to pungent. The smoke levels were overall lower than I expected.

Dre start you off with a presentation on his phone. Tonight his software to project the pictures on the wall did not cooperate and we looked at the visuals on his phone. We were able to get a lot of questions about Mescal answered. The whole experience was revelatory. We got numerous plates of bites from tostaditos di Pastor to pineapple and crema tacos to a range of 4 bowls with chapulines, ant eggs, pineapple, and orange. This is the first time I have had insects that were really tasty and not greasy.

When the formal tasting came to an end, we ordered a couple of tacos {tinga and huilatoche}, a ceviche de atun and another of pacific shrimp. All the food was outstanding. Dre picked out 2 cocktails for us from their regular list. And like all great bar tenders, Dre already knew what we were looking for. Both cocktails were superb but I preferred mine and Kay hers.

By the end, not only were we listing to one side, but our tummies were full and we felt we had made a real connection with Dre. He told us that he can do 2 or 3 more versions of the tasting, delving into more and more involved products and stories. We will definitely be back.

The tasting is held on Tuesdays at 5.30 and 8.00 pm. There are a maximum of 4 seats available. TOnight we were the only 2. They op[en up the reservations the first of every month and in a few days or hours, they sell out. The total cost with 4 small plates, 2 cocktails, and the mescal tasting came to $160 including a tip on top of the 20% gratuity built in. This is not only a unique experience but one of the stellar values in dining in the DMV.

Best part: The bus stop going is basically half a block from our abide and the return drops you 2 blocks from home. Good thing too or we might not have made it.

Last add on Clavel. They make their own masa from nixtamalized corn from Oaxaca. The food is simple, straightforward, and just loaded with flavor. While there are more famous chefs in the DMV playing in the Mexican realm, this is the real deal. Stunning food with brilliantly balanced flavors. And the tortillas are AMAZING.


Thanks for your post. Clavel is one of our favs and the mezcal tasting has been on our to do list for a long time. I’m not at all surprised that it was a great experience.

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Dean meet Cindy.

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Hi Cindy!

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Hi Dean!

Dean: Just realized that I forgot to mention that I had a very nice dinner at Clavel in 2019 with The Dohlers and another long time friend when we were passing thru Baltimore, coming home from Florida. Might need a return visit with you all when we pass thru again (maybe late Feb/early March).
Jazz at Germano’s was pretty damn good the night before. Not a scheduled performance but an “open mic” type thing for non-vocalists. And food.

Any excuse for Clavel is a good one.

We would love to see you if you pass through BMore. Def let us know.

I see that 2fifty, the outstanding brisket place in PG County, will be at Clavel on Oct 12 for a fusion night – brisket on those tortillas, I imagine.

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And I am going to be on an amtrak coming back from Bourbon country. I am sure the food on Amtrak will erase my sorrows at missing this event. And I don’t think I can drink my own bourbon on the train.

You can’t drink your own bourbon on a train? Is this still the United States? (I quit following the news)

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I know you can’t drink your own booze on a plane. They need to keep count of how much you consume.

I’m presuming a sleeper

Unfortunately not.

I really wish Amtrak had a sleeper option that was less expensive than a Roomette. Some railroad used to have a sleeper car that packed in more sleeping compartments by stacking them partially on top of their neighbors. If it was cheaper i would not mind a smaller compartment.