Music and service outperform the food at Oldies Music Legends

June 17, 1994|By Elizabeth Large | Elizabeth Large,Restaurant Critic

OK, I realize that at a place named Oldies Music Legends the food might not be the top priority. I'm not stupid. Still, given the choice of eating dinner with or without Little Richard, I'll pick Little Richard unless it's been a very bad day.

I suppose you'd describe Oldies Music Legends as a supper and dance club. It's one huge slate-gray room decked out with black and white photos of the stars, lots of neon and a black and white tile dance floor. Sunday is karaoke night and sometimes local bands perform, but the main entertainment is music from the '50s to the '70s.

It sounds like a place where two middle-age women dropping by after work might feel out of place, right? Not so. Everyone from the bartender to our waitress made us feel welcome. In fact, the best thing about Oldies Music Legends -- after Little Richard and the Marvelettes -- is the staff. Friendly, incurious and low-key. You hardly touch your potato and bacon soup because it tastes like artificial bacon bits? It disappears discreetly without any questions. You ask for a wet wipe after your ribs? The restaurant doesn't have them, but the waitress volunteers to bring you a warm, wet napkin.

The food comes in a distant third. It's probably best to stick with the munchies, like wings and dips, listed on the 45 "record" at your table. Or the various sandwiches on the 33 1/3 that serves as the main menu. The rib special that evening was pretty good, with tender meat and a spicy-sweet barbecue sauce. Too bad it was served with a foil-wrapped baked potato and canned corn.

Dinners from the menu include several chicken dishes, some seafood, a steak and prime rib. My guess is that choice rib might be more accurate. It's not bad, but there wasn't a lot of beefy flavor and the texture was somewhat mealy. Canned corn also graced the roast beef, along with excellent western-style fries. A salad comes with dinner, quite skimpy on the lettuce.

If you don't want a full dinner, Oldies Music Legends offers, besides sandwiches, eight different salads, including an "Italian Antipasta Salad." In spite of the name, half of it was pasta salad, piled on strips of lunch meats and cheese and a bed of iceberg lettuce and raw vegetables. It was doused with bottled Italian dressing.

When it comes time for dessert, the waitress will bring you a tray arranged with slices of cakes that all look the same except for the colors. Some are cheesecake and some aren't. The two we tried were just OK, in spite of seductive names like cappuccino mousse cake and chocolate Grand Marnier cake.

Oldies Music Legends

Where: 102 Chartley Drive, Reisterstown

Hours: Monday to Saturday, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 a.m., Sunday 4 p.m.-midnight

Credit cards accepted: AE, MC, V

Features: American food

Non-smoking section? Yes

Call: (410) 526-6607

Prices: $2.75-$14.95

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.