4719 Harford Road, Baltimore
If you have ever visited a farmer’s market in Baltimore, you have probably seen and hopefully enjoyed a cup of Zeke’s coffee. Nothing says “good morning” like the rich, smooth, fair trade ebony gold poured into each cup. But there are more edible treasures to enjoy beyond what you find at one of the stands.
Almost a decade ago, Tom Rhodes opened Zeke’s first coffee house. Since then, he has garnered an extensive fan base, relocated to a much larger area, and added an eclectic menu of food options. Here, you can find the usual espresso and tea drinks, along with the occasional specialty coffee drink. The daily food menu largely caters to simple, fresh-made breakfast sandwiches, lunch pies, and a wide variety of pastries and desserts such as fruit pies, cheesecakes, and other sweets. But the weekend hot breakfast specials have often rocketed to the top of my to-do list.
Each week, one of Baltimore’s best chefs, Shawn Lagergren, churns out one or two specialty items to start the day right. From pancakes and Belgian waffles with fresh, seasonal fruit compote to original omelet creations, Lagergren turns the most simple items into gourmet delicacies that will keep giving you new reasons to look forward to the weekend. Some of the standards each month include a house made cream chip beef that isn’t too heavy on the cream or the stomach, shrimp and grits with a peppery Cajun kick and fluffy, made-to-order omelets. Some of the more creative weekends you will find Migas (a Latino scrambled egg dish with chorizo, tortilla strips, beans, and spicy peppers), and fried buttermilk chicken on a house made biscuit with egg over-medium. My favorite to date is the cheesesteak and egg bagel sandwich with fried potatoes. Watching that delicious egg yolk drip all over the food is like watching a high-price hooker slowly undress. You know something good is about to happen!
The specials menu is posted on Zeke’s site at the start of each new month so you can plan ahead. But even spur of the moment, this is a great place to start your day. If you’re lucky, you will find yourself there on a day when Lagergren makes his jalepeno cheddar biscuits.
- Michael Ritmiller is a Baltimore native and foodie whose professional career spans across a variety of research & development initiatives in addition to serving local non-profits that benefit the community. An avid believer in supporting small restauranteurs, Michael began writing for Baltimore OUTloud in 2018 with the intent of identifying who offers the “best of” dishes around town.