I went to the new Trattoria on the corner of Charles and Biddle last night. This is the former location of Tampico and Limogues. Both of those former residents folded in less than a year. While Tampico's failure was obvious (quite possibly the worst waitstaff-served food I ever tried) I always thought that would be a great location for a restaurant. Will the curse follow the new owner?
They haven't done much to change the interior from the previous tenants, and I don't think they needed to do much. The long bar up front is nice and the wall of windows makes for some nice people watching (in both directions). I was told by the bartender that the wine selection is top notch but did not try any last night so can't comment (the bottle of two buck chuck on the bar not withstanding).
My girl and I both ordered pasta dishes. Something I rarely do in a restaurant. I generally follow my wise grandfather's premonition: What can they do to a plate of spaghetti to make it worth $15? She had the alfredo and I had the carbonora. I must say both were excellent. I cringed when my girl ordered the alfredo fully expecting pasta swimming in a bowl of heavy cream but it was expertly sauces with plenty of good sharp cheese and black pepper. My carbonora seemed to be served with a ham-like prosciutto instead of the more bacon like pancetta, but I didn't mind. It was again nicely sauced, if understated, with just the egg coating. It came with sausage that could easy be moved to the side and eaten Roman style after having one's fill of the pasta.
In general, both pasta dishes were excellent. As is most often the case, I wish the portions were half the size and they would charge half the money. I did not inquire about half portions.
I had initially heard this was an off shoot of Chiperelli's in Little Italy. I was very glad to be corrected on that. The owner was working last night, often on the line in the open kitchen. He informed me that he was the general manager for Chiperelli's for 15 years and decided to leave and start his own place. This is completely his own and is not affiliated with the Little Italy restaurant in any way (the quality of the pasta speaks to that).
I enjoyed my first trip and will go again. A few more experience like last night and I will consider recommending it as a nice comfortable Italian place in Baltimore.
Any other 'hounds been there and have an opinion?