No not the kind you smoke, the kind you eat at. A dive, a hole in the wall, a place that is not quite clean, but hasn’t been shut down by the health department. Yeah, that kind of Joint.
There are a lot of Joints in the Baltimore area. Duda’s in Fells Point, Davis Pub in Annapolis, and my personal favorite Attman’s Deli on Lombard Street. Recently, I had the opportunity to take some friends to Attmans and share a real Baltimore experience with them.
I’ve been going to Attmans since I was knee high to a grasshopper. There are only two things on the menu that I’ve ever ordered — hot dogs and corned beef on rye with mustard. That’s it, why try anything else, when these two items are perfection? (Oh, there are about 200 options on the menu for those who don’t like my choice.)
The kibbitz room is basically the same as it was when I was a boy. Not quite clean, but not dirty, and walls filled with picture frames. Although, some of the more — ahem — questionable material is no longer on the walls. Somehow it feels like coming home every time I go in.
And that is the definition of a Joint — a place that is unpretentious where you feel like you’re at home.