Mex joining mix at Power Plant

TABLE TALK

March 22, 2006|By SLOANE BROWN

Yeehaw - a new chuck wagon is about to mosey into town. Its name is Mex. It will be the newest resident of Baltimore's Power Plant Live, taking the space where Lucille's used to be.

The Cordish Co., Power Plant Live's developer, has partnered with longtime Baltimore restaurant manager Walt Ramick on the place. That should be your first hint that Mex is hoping to offer more than just your standard Mexican-restaurant atmosphere. Think "hip rustic."

Or, as Cordish Co. vice president Reed Cordish describes it, "an extremely well-done, finished, rustic feel."

There isn't a separate dining room and bar. Everything flows together. Cordish says some of the walls are lined with booths - not done in the usual U-shape, but saw-toothed. It creates intimate dining areas, in addition to the regular tables.

On the walls, there are all sorts of Western images, along with LCD screens running loops of various Southwestern scenes. Some walls have exposed brick. One wall is painted brilliant turquoise. Another looks like the side of a large log cabin.

Most of the color scheme is earthy tans, browns and burnt orange, but there are also splashes of Southwestern color - turquoise, bright orange, pink.

In the middle of a room is a huge island bar. The bar top is stained oak; its front is covered in granite tile. In the back, there's a raised platform that overlooks everything else. That's the soft-seated lounge area, filled with couches and ottomans, so patrons can just drink in the whole Mex scene, so to speak. Seating inside Mex totals about 145.

Oh. And did we mention that life-size replica of a bull? Cordish says it's covered in bull hide and looks remarkably real.

Then there's the chow (really, that's what the menu says). Not an extensive menu, but enough. Each course is the same price. For $6.75, you can choose one of eight appetizers, such as guacamole and chips for two, three skewered and grilled ears of corn smothered in ground chiles and cojita cheese, or ceviche.

The $6.50 salads include Caesar salad, fajita salad or grilled-chicken salad. A trio of tacos - fish, chicken or steak - goes for $7.50. Burritos are $8.75, and you can get them deep-fried if you want. Fajitas will set you back $12.50.

There are three items listed under Mex's house specialties: stacked enchilada, red snapper in a tomato, olive and caper sauce over white rice, and grilled skirt steak served with grilled zucchini and beans. They're $13 each.

Mex, 410-528-0128, is scheduled to kick off its grand opening tomorrow. You'll find it at 26 Market Place at Power Plant Live. Its planned hours are 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., seven days a week.

Maryland Day

McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurant, M&S Grill and Maryland With Pride are teaming up to mark Maryland Day, which celebrates the arrival of Maryland's first European settlers.

The two restaurants will offer lunch and dinner specials for $16.34, in honor of the colony's founding year, between 11:30 a.m. and 11 p.m. Friday. The restaurants also will offer drink specials and prizes. State employees with proper identification will receive a gift certificate to be used during another visit.

McCormick & Schmick's, 410-234-1300, is located at 711 Eastern Ave. M&S Grill, 410-547-9333, is at 201 E. Pratt St.

Correction

The phone number for the new Granite Bar and Grill in Canton is 410-675-1880. An incorrect phone number was listed in last week's column.

If you have information regarding a local restaurant's opening, closing or major changes, please e-mail that information to sloane@sloanebrown.com or fax it to 410-675-3451.

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