The Polo Grill, The Inn at the Colonnade, 4 W. University...

DINING OUT: THE CRITICS REPORT

January 05, 1991|By Mary Maushard | Mary Maushard,The Evening SunThe Sun The Sunday Sun

The Polo Grill, The Inn at the Colonnade, 4 W. University Parkway, 235-8200. Since The Polo Grill opened, it has been a hot spot, garnering raves and demanding reservations weeks in advance. We found the accolades well deserved and the reservations still hard to come by. We also found it less pretentious and more dedicated to true-tasting American food than expected. The Polo Grill offers excellent fare and accommodating service at commensurate prices. But its bustling, clubby atmosphere makes the dining room far from intimate. $$$expensive. (Last visited 11/90.)

Lynn Williams India Grill, 1017 S. Charles St., 962-1554. If you're going to borrow, borrow from the best. The India Grill's name is reminiscent of the Bombay Grill, and the menu is even more so, but this is a copycat that admittedly knows its stuff. There are flaws -- dull, greasy samosa, dry chicken pakora -- but shrimp and lentil soups are many-layered and inventive, lobster Malabar was both spicy and rich, chicken jal frezi was a tangy success, and desserts were delightful. $$moderate. (Last visited 12/90.)

Janice Baker China Chefs, Hickory Plaza, 10801 Hickory Ridge Road, Columbia, 730-1200. China Chefs may be one of the best Chinese restaurants around. Kung Pao lamb was exceptionally tender and there was a lot of it, mixed with scallions and raw peanuts, in a temperately hot sauce. A whole bass in bean sauce was firm and fresh, while delicious, home-style chicken (on the Chinese menu) consisted of sizzling hot chunks of chicken in a pot with hot peppers, whole cloves of garlic, scallion greens and strips of fresh ginger. $$moderate. (Last visited 11/90.)

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