The South Harbor Tavern at 500 Harborview Drive in Baltimore is under new management. (It will be getting a new name soon, but no one is saying what it is yet.) Yesterday, owner Nazir Musa introduced his new menu, a combination of Caribbean and Mediterranean dishes. You can get a Harbor burger here made with ground beef, feta cheese, fresh basil and fresh oregano, or you can order Caribbean shrimp in a coconut milk and saffron reduction. Dinner entrees run from $14 to $22.
I like the sound of the new restaurant's Sunday buffet breakfast. It's served brunch hours, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. but it's mostly breakfast foods. The $12.95 price includes all the mimosas you can drink.
The restaurant is open every day for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch.
Funky and fusion
In the several months since the Yin Yankee Cafe (105 Main St., Annapolis) first promised free food for any customer who came in dressed in a coonskin hat and a bathrobe, surprisingly - or not so surprisingly - there's been only one taker. He was 9 years old.
The restaurant, which chef/manager Jerry Trice describes as "very untraditional" and "pretty funky," doesn't take itself too seriously - except for its fusion cuisine and sushi. Yin Yankee's signature dish is jade-seared tuna in a fresh horseradish and daikon crust with wasabi mashed potatoes and seaweed salad with chive oil. Other entrees include a bouillabaisse with Chinese noodles and tea-smoked duck.
Most of the ingredients used in the dishes, says Trice, are indigenous to Maryland or from local sources. Yin Yankee is open for lunch and dinner daily; dinner entrees run from $15.95 to $22.95.
Do they accept major credit cards? "Everything but your Blockbuster card," promises Trice.
Ellicott City has a new all-you-can-eat restaurant, the Panda Buffet (8801 Baltimore National Pike).
In spite of the name, this isn't a strictly Chinese restaurant. Lunch is $6.95 and dinner $10.95 for a buffet that includes oysters, mussels, teriyaki chicken, roast beef, steamed shrimp, vegetarian dishes, dumplings, pizza, soups, salads, fresh fruits and desserts. The restaurant is open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner (with dinner served all day Saturday and Sunday).
Eating out less
Americans are eating out less, according to the NDP Group, which studies national eating trends. Last year, the average number of restaurant meals a person ate in a year was 137, down 2.8 percent from the previous year (141). It was the first time in more than a decade that there had been a drop.
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.large@ baltsun.com.