En Español

En Español

Amidst the explosion of the Hampden restaurant scene in recent years, Holy Frijoles has been a longtime stalwart. Located smack-dab in the middle of the The Avenue, the informal joint serving dependable Mexican cuisine has been at it for a number of years. So last year, when a devastating fire closed the establishment, folks waited patiently for the reopening. It took just about a year, but the unveiling finally took place in late fall, as the restaurant/bar not only reopened in its former digs, but added a healthy addition as well.

The main room looks pretty familiar, with the big main bar on the left…

…and a scattering of high-top tables along the right wall.

Bright, bold colors and lots of funky artwork define the space.

Along the rear wall are several colorful vintage pinball machines.

And, through a large opening to the left, is an entire room dedicated to a collection of playable pinball machines, lining two walls of the space.

To the left of the main barroom lies a large new dining room, carved from space made by acquiring the building next door. The room’s décor takes its cue from the term “Holy” in the restaurant’s name.

Pews provide some of the seating, heavy red velvet drapes hang along the rear wall, and lighting fixtures salvaged from an old church are suspended overhead. The hostess station is situated in what was once a church pulpit.

As always, free tortilla chips and zesty salsa are provided to all diners and bar patrons alike. The menu still contains all the Mexican favorites we’ve come to love. We enjoyed a Paloma, along with some tequila shots and a classic Miller High Life.

It’s nice to have this spot come back to life to continue to add a Mexican element to the eclectic culinary options along The Avenue. {Holy Frijoles, 908 W. 36th S Street, Hampden}

Brian Michael Lawrence

Brian Michael Lawrence is one of THE Baltimore style experts. After all, he was the longtime editor-in-chief at STYLE Magazine, which specialized in covering everything stylish around the Baltimore area. Brian also served as editorial director for the digital division at Sinclair Broadcasting, and creative director at Blue Sky Design. Currently, he oversees communications & marketing for the department of Tourism, Film & the Arts at Maryland’s Commerce Department.  In his bi-weekly column, you’ll get to see what cool hotspots are piquing the interest of this Baltimore style maven and why - whether it's the fabulous food, cool cocktails or elegant environs.