We happened to be here during Baltimore Restaurant Week, while on a Red Sox road trip. Liked the look of the menu online, so we reserved using Open Table through the BRW Web site. Arrived about 15 minutes later at 6:30 and were warmly greeted - "We've been expecting you; your table is ready." Small thing, but it makes for a good experience. Lovely 4-top set for two overlooking the street. White tablecloths, dark cloth napkins - classy, but not at all stuffy. Tables are set a reasonable distance apart and it was easy to have a conversation. Our server, Luther, was attentive and friendly but didn't hover; he was able to describe the menu items and make a good suggestion for a glass of wine based on my order. Food was delivered promptly by whatever server was available, so everything was piping hot.
We chose the BRW menu, which was $30.13 for 3 courses, choice of 3-6 items in each course. We started with Insalata Francesca - a mound of fresh arugula with fontina cheese, apples, strawberries and walnuts in a light balsamic dressing - and a heaping portion of Calamari Fritti, which was fried calamari, very thin eggplant and zucchini slices with a polenta cake and marinara on the side. The calamari was overly salty for our taste, but perfectly fried - tender inside, lightly crisp outside. And the veggies slices were amazingly good, particularly the eggplant.
Entrees were a mixed bag. My short ribs (3 decent sized boneless ribs) were tender but very fatty and bland. Grilled asparagus and garlic mashed potatoes were average. "Conchiglie ai frutti di mare" scored big with my seafood-loving husband: mussels, clams, shrimp and scallops on house-made spinach pasta shells with a garlicky white wine sauce. He ate every molecule, using the decent Italian bread to sop up the last bit of sauce. Entrees were reasonable portions, especially considering the reduced price, and very attractively plated.
Dessert was a choice of cannoli, chocolate mousse or cheesecake. We opted for cannoli and cheesecake and were very pleased. The cannoli was a little non-traditional, in a good way - a pizzelle cookie shell with a slightly lighter and less sweet filling that I'm used to. It came beautifully presented with a pool of heavy cream and fruit puree. Loved it! The cheesecake was also artfully presented, dense, moist and tangy.
Overall we were very impressed; service was excellent, dining room was attractive and classy, the menu choices were interesting and the food was above the average Italian place. We'll definitely go there again on our next trip to Baltimore.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.