Mediterranean meals at CazBar

TABLE TALK

August 23, 2006|By SLOANE BROWN

Charles Street has a new resident. CazBar has opened in the Brown's Arcade space where Shogun used to be. Owner Alec Haluk Kantar describes the place as a Mediterranean restaurant and bar, and he's renovated the space to reflect that.

Kantar says you'll find colors like eggplant, dark green and light green on the walls and a "nice, warm tile floor" featuring black and burnt orange. There are also lots of wood accents in a rich maple and upholstery in a deep-copper color.

The main floor consists of a dining room up front. Where the sushi bar was, you'll find a regular bar, topped in real copper.

For nights when there's overflow, a downstairs dining room is available that also can be used for private functions and seats about 60. Kantar says he's also using that space to display work by a local artist, which will change monthly.

Speaking of changing monthly, Kantar expects the same to happen with his menu.

"Eventually, we'll have a huge section of mezes, small plates," he says. "I want to encourage people to share and try different flavors."

Currently, you may find a dozen or so of those small plates on the menu, with items such as hummus ($5); pulled chicken and feta cheese wrapped in phyllo ($7); and chicken wings tossed in sweet-and-spicy pomegranate sauce garnished with blue-cheese crumbles ($8).

There is also a handful of pizzas, including those topped with prosciutto, parmesan cheese, onions and sweet-pea bechamel sauce drizzled with basil oil ($10); or applewood-smoked bacon with goat cheese and wild mushrooms with tomato sauce ($9).

Sandwiches include slow-roasted tomatoes, basil and sliced mozzarella on a toasted baguette ($6); and open-faced shrimp salad on olive sourdough ($8).

Those who want an entree all to themselves can pick from kebabs - lamb, chicken, beef or minced meat served with basmati rice and dipping sauces (1 skewer, $9; 2 skewers, $16); grilled salmon ($17); jumbo lump crab cake ($20); or chicken Chesapeake, a chicken breast stuffed with crab and topped with a lemon-butter sauce ($18).

CazBar, 410-528-1222, is at 316 N. Charles St. It's open 11 a.m. to midnight seven days a week.

208 Talbot

If you've planned one last trip to the Eastern Shore this summer, you might like to know that a longtime St. Michael's fave is up and running again - with new owners and a new wine bar.

Brian Fox and chef Brendan Keegan have remodeled and renovated 208 Talbot. Fox says while the building itself is "a very charming old house built in 1870 with brick walls, low beamed ceilings and fireplaces," they've refreshed it by putting in new blinds, wainscoting and fixing up the interior lighting.

The menu has appetizers such as fried Virginia oysters with curried butternut squash puree and spicy chorizo sausage ($14); and duck-leg confit with a corn pancake, Savoy-pepper slaw and a sweet homemade spicy barbecue sauce ($15).

Entrees include braised bone-in short ribs with truffled flageolets and sauteed spinach ($30); grilled Berkshire pork loin chop and whole grilled prawns, served with creamy grits, grilled apple rings and an ancho chile sauce ($33); and seared Alaskan halibut, served with mashed sweet potatoes, sauteed corn, butter beans, sweet bell peppers and fresh basil, with beurre blanc and tomato-caper relish ($32). There is also a small-plate menu.

You'll find 208 Talbot, 410-745-3838, at 208 N. Talbot St. in St. Michael's. Its hours are 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

Pazza Luna auction

Finally, an apparent finale for one of the first upscale eateries in Locust Point. Pazza Luna is to go on the auction block Sept. 7. Former owner Kim Acton sold her popular Italian eatery last year, but its new owners closed it several weeks ago. Everything inside and out - including the liquor license - is to go on sale starting at 11 a.m. that Thursday at the restaurant, 1401 E. Clement St.

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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