Baltimore County Restaurant Week starts Friday and runs through Jan. 27. Chefs and owners from some of the 44 participating restaurants were expected to join Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz and Baltimore County Chamber of Commerce President Keith Scott on Thursday morning at Patrick's of Cockeysville for a Restaurant Week kick-off event.
The county's version, unlike the city's, allows restaurants to set the fixed-price for their menus anywhere from $10 to $35 for anywhere from one to four courses. That makes comparing menus rough.
The blue ribbon for the county's best restaurant week menu goes, hands-down, to Il Basilico (formerly Pasta Blitz), which is presenting an eight-course menu of slow-cooked Italian food. The courses are smaller, said Il Basilico owner and chef Anna Di Pierno, but diners will be able to taste more things. The plates include gnocchi with a pesto of pistachio and bacon, "sea-aroma" risotto with pears and Gulf shrimp, zucchini alla scapece, steamed tuna and a dessert trio of tiramisu, millefoglie and ciambella (Italian doughnuts).