‘Verde’ Pizza and ‘Crushed Velvet’ Shaved Ice Coming to Key Highway in Federal Hill

| April 17, 2023 | 0 Comments

Canton Neapolitan pizza restaurant Verde and a new shaved ice concept called Crushed Velvet are opening at 1302 Key Hwy. in Federal Hill. The two businesses take over a former gas station that used to be home to the On Brazilian Time food truck. It is also where a seven-story, 70-unit apartment building is planned by Southern Land Company.

Verde will be run out of a food truck and will be called Key Neapolitan by Verde and Crushed Velvet will be in the former gas station.

Crushed Velvet is owned by Riverside couple Kate Shotwell and Mack Fowler. Fowler is a manager at Verde and Shotwell is a dental hygienist at Light Street Dental.

Fowler is partnering with Key Neapolitan by Verde with Verde owner Ed Bosco.

Shotwell and Fowler are renovating the building with the help of Fowler’s father and friend to turn it into a shaved ice shop. There will be new signage, a walk-up window for ordering, and a new bathroom. The two garage bays at the 1,715 sq. ft. building will be used for storage.

The property has been cleaned up and will have new landscaping, including an herb garden and corn stalks in flower pots, which is a Verde tradition; eight picnic tables with umbrellas; lawn games; and signage. Two to three parking spots will be available to patrons.

Shotwell has been a longtime fan of shaved ice, which is a Hawaiian tradition, but this is her first time operating a shaved ice business. Shotwell and Fowler have been looking for opportunities to open a business in the area in recent years.

Crushed Velvet will use fresh syrups and homemade ingredients.

Verde has been open in Canton for 10 years and has been interested in expanding to “this side of the harbor,” according to Fowler.

Key Neapolitan by Verde purchased a 1949 Dodge pickup that it will use as a food truck. It has a wood-fired pizza oven and beer taps on the back. The owners will serve 12-inch pizzas that cook in about 60 seconds from the truck.

Popular pizzas at Verde include the Margherita; Il Demone with smoked Buffalo mozzarella, spicy soppressata, chili flakes, sun-dried tomato paste, and local organic honey; and the Pistachio e Salsiccia with homemade mozzarella, pistachio pesto, sausage, and pecorino romano.

The businesses will not be serving alcohol at this time, but are interested in the possibility in the future. Soft drinks, including water and soda, will be available.

Crushed Velvet and Key Neapolitan by Verde will be open Wednesday to Friday from 4pm to 9pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 12pm to 9pm. Shotwell and Fowler said they hope to open in early- to mid-May.

In regards to the proposed development at the property, Shotwell and Fowler said they will be open until at least October and hope the concepts will return next year. They are not sure about the future direction of the property beyond their current lease.

Pizza from Verde

1302 Key Hwy. 

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Founder and Publisher of SouthBmore.com, longtime resident of South Baltimore, and a graduate of Towson University. Diehard Ravens and O's fan, father of three, amateur pizza chef, skateboarder, and "bar food" foodie. Email me at Kevin@InceptMM.com and follow me on Twitter at @SoBoKevin.