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Restaurants & Bars

soigne` in south baltimore/fed hill

Slippery | Jan 21, 200201:50 PM     1

Went to soigne` last Friday and had an excellent meal. The 4 of us were all impressed with the experience.

The menu is Asian fusion primarily seafood - appetizers are $6-9, entrees are $13 - $22, desserts are $5 - $7, a robust wine list with many selections in the $20 - $30 range. We had reservations at 7:00 with no problems, but we were amazed at how crowded the restaurant became by about 8:30 when we left - many people were waiting at the bar. One of the owners stopped by our table and we commented on how busy they were and she said they are much busier than they expected in these early weeks, with very limited press and no advertising yet. Parking in the area is a little tight so expect to walk a few blocks. Those not comfortable with street parking will need to get over there fears if they plan to eat here.

At our table we had two appetizers - grilled calamari stuffed with crab and butternut squash with cinnamon ravioli. The calamari was tasty, but it was only one small whole calamari, and pretty expensive at $9 - probably wouldn't order again. The ravioli dish contained two large raviolis, and quite delicious - a winner at $6.

For entrees, we had 1) crabcakes encrusted with wasabi and three fried oysters ($20) served with bok choy - huge lump crab meat and excellent. 2) Encrusted marlin served over oriental vegetables ($18) an excellent choice, quite delicious. 3) tofu stir fry over noodles ($13) - my girlfriend is a tofu fanatic and raved about the dish 4) salmon bouillabaisse over noodles ($19) - another real winner. Everyone of us was very happy with our orders, and if the other selections weren't so tempting, I think we would all repeat our orders in a heartbeat. Portion sizes for all were reasonable and the presentation was quite nice, with a lot of height on the plates.

The desserts appear to all be made in house, and they were quite delicious - although two of the three choices were a little small. We had two orders of the gingerbread with cinnamon ice cream which was delicious and is the subject of my daydreaming these days, and it was a very healthy portion. The lemon parfait and flourless chocolate cake were both the subject of favorable comments, but both receiving parties were a little disappointed of the size.

Service was very good, but declined a bit as it got really busy - although we were never disappointed with the attention we received. The atmosphere is quite nice with bamboo place mats, and bright paintings on the wall and music playing throughout. As with most new restaurants, it was fairly noisy - but unlike some, it wasn't at uncomfortable levels.

Soigne` is a definite winner, and I will certainly be returning - hopefully sooner rather than later.

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