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Baltimore: Disappointing visit to Marconi's

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Baltimore: Disappointing visit to Marconi's

Eclectivore | May 5, 2003 11:40 AM

Went to Marconi's Saturday night for a celebratory dinner, party of three. Other than the mediocre food and poor service it was good. Once seated, a waiter with an attitude finally came over and took a drink order. Took a while to get them. We had finished the drinks before he came back to take our orders, and did not offer a wine list until asked. One of our party had the chopped house salad. He asked for freshly-ground pepper, which the waiter did come by with, and ground half of it onto the table. I had the onion soup, and knew it was too cold when the waiter could pick up the soup crock with his fingers and pour the contents into a soupbowl. The soup had lots of onions, but two small barely-cheesed croutons. The stock tasted canned, and whoever made it should be. Ordered a nice New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, which came well-chilled and with chilled stemware; but the waiter did not put the bottle on ice after pouring the first round. One of us had one of Marconi's signature dishes, Lobster Cardinale: not very hot, not very flavorful, and tough. One had broiled fish: good, but not very hot. I ordered Filet of Sole Veronique; what I got was more like lukewarm Sole Meuniere, simply grilled with lemon butter, but there were peeled grapes on top. No sign of the creamy white wine sauce specified in every standard recipe for Veronique. We ordered an optional bowl of creamed spinach as a side dish: not hot, not very creamy, and way, way too much nutmeg, so much so I began to wonder what were the symptoms of myristicin poisoning. (The temperature deficiencies in all of these may have been a problem in the kitchen, or a result of the waiter's typically dilatory service.) For dessert we had their signature ice cream and hot chocolate sauce, which again was not very hot, but was as good as always. We conclude that Marconi's has gone down significantly, and at $65+ a person for this kind of food and service, we probably will not be dining there again.

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