A neighborhood chain begins in Columbia

TABLETALK

May 07, 1998|By Elizabeth Large | Elizabeth Large,SUN RESTAURANT CRITIC

Henry Pertman and Jeff Pressman, formerly of Henry & Jeff's and J. P. Henry's, have landed at a new restaurant in Columbia, the Tavern at Centre Park (8808 Centre Park Drive, formerly the site of McAllister's). Pertman, who developed the eclectic menu, is the executive chef; Pressman is the food and beverage director. Besides salads and sandwiches, the tavern offers entrees such as baked smoked duckling, a mixed grill of Mediterranean quail and pork, and trout stuffed with crab mousse.

Owner J. P. Buldoc is planning for this to be the first of a chain of "upscale neighborhood restaurants." The just-opened tavern has a lively contemporary decor and seating for 170.

Ruby Lounge changes hands

The Ruby Lounge (800 N. Charles St.) is no longer part of the Donna's empire. As of last week, David Kunes is the new owner.

"We were proud of it," says Alan Hirsch, co-owner of Donna's. "But we couldn't do it justice in promoting it. When Donna appeared anywhere, Donna's [coffee bars] got the publicity. Under an individual operator it will do better."

Kunes, formerly manager of Kisling's Tavern & Grill in Fells Point, has no plans to change the hip martini lounge and restaurant.

Bill Bateman's expanding

A new Bill Bateman's was scheduled to open yesterday in the River Hill Village Center, Clarksville, this one built from the ground up. And another should open in Reisterstown in late summer. So what is the company doing right?

"Fun atmosphere, our bartenders have great personalities and we have a lot of microbrews," says spokesman Thomas Strawser. Yes, but what about the food? "We give good portions for the dollars."

Appealing Ashley M's

Ed Rogers' new restaurant, Ashley M's (911 N. Charles St.), is now open for business, and a very appealing little place it is. Rogers is also the chef/owner of La Tesso Tana near the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. The new restaurant's menu is an unexpected combination of Italian, wild game and "old-style" American dishes.

London, of all places

According to this month's Bon Appetit, London is currently the hottest of gastronomic destinations. The magazine devotes a "Special Collector's Edition" to the city's chefs and restaurants and compares the food renaissance there to the restaurant revolution that swept New York 15 years ago.

Table Talk welcomes interesting tidbits of restaurant news. Please send suggestions to Elizabeth Large, Table Talk, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore 21278; fax to 410-783-2519; or e-mail to elizabeth.largaltsun.com.

Elizabeth Large's reviews of restaurants appear inside the Home & Family section. This Sunday: Aldo's, the new restaurant in Little Italy.

Pub Date: 5/07/98

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