Cuba libre!Baltimore's first upscale Cuban restaurant is...

TABLE TALK

March 06, 1997|By Elizabeth Large | Elizabeth Large,SUN RESTAURANT CRITIC

Cuba libre!

Baltimore's first upscale Cuban restaurant is finally open, as of yesterday. Neighbors were concerned Little Havana, 1325A Key Highway, would be a mega-bar disguised as a restaurant, and that held things up. But owners Tim Whisted and Richard von Lange convinced them otherwise, so now you can eat grilled swordfish with mango and blueberries or peppercorn-coated pork tenderloin with 10-bean salsa in the chic, colorful dining room. And don't miss the bar itself, a work of art made of antique pressed-tin tiles. Prices at dinner time run from $9.95 to $14.95. Call (410) 837-9903 for reservations.

Re-creating a classic

Restaurateur Lenny Kaplan of Polo Grill fame wants to re-create a classic Baltimore restaurant in the Inner Harbor. "Remember Miller Bros. or the old Pimlico or the Chesapeake?" TC he says. The new restaurant will be located in the former Inn at Pier 5, also under renovation.

The concept has changed somewhat from the steak house that was originally planned. "There'll still be wonderful steaks and chops," Kaplan says, "including some not so typical [on a restaurant's menu] like pork chops." But they'll share equal billing with dishes like lobster Norfolk and perhaps planked stuffed rockfish.

The restaurant, scheduled to open around the beginning of June, hasn't got a name yet; but the front-runner right now is -- you heard it here first -- Lenny's.

The South of France

Last week I reported that Weber's on Boston has changed its menu to French bistro fare. Now look for a name change as well. Owner Dennis Manneville says that by the end of March or beginning of April it will be Le Bistro Midi. Why the change?

"Midi" means "south" in French, and Manville is from Toulouse in the south of France.

Elizabeth Large's reviews of restaurants appear inside the Sunday Today section. This Sunday: Now that the new Troia at the Walters has opened, how's the original Cafe Troia in Towson doing?

Table Talk welcomes interesting tidbits of restaurant news. Please send suggestions to Elizabeth Large, Table Talk, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore 21278. Or fax to (410) 783-2519.

Pub Date: 3/06/97

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