21 Annapolis Eats

Our first Annapolis restaurant guide gives the highs (and some lows) of what the historic city has on its plate.

Edited by Suzanne Loudermilk. By John Farlow, Anne Haddad, Joan Jacobson, Suzanne Loudermilk, Mary Maushard, Linda Perlstein, an

This luxurious Italian-Mediterranean restaurant is the latest to inhabit a prime location on Main and Conduit streets in the heart of Annapolis, a few blocks from the State House. Opened in November 2006, its decor is reminiscent of a regal old New York restaurant with high ceilings and ample booths. Chandeliers glitter, original paintings hang from the walls, and angular, high-backed white chairs give the place a contemporary look. While it’s clear that owners Arturo Ottaviano (manager) and Maurizio Cotti (chef) put a lot of thought into this decor, it’s even more apparent that tremendous effort goes into everything that comes out of the kitchen. From the cream of asparagus soup with a rich stock and a surprise of crab meat, to a salad of shaved parmesan and bresaola (cured beef) with arugula, to the tender lobster tail tossed with fettuccini, each dish is prepared with great skill and care. A duck breast in pear reduction and a veal chop stuffed with fontinella and prosciutto could not be more succulent. A buttery branzino, a Mediterranean sea bass, is cooked perfectly and expertly filleted at the table. Dinner includes fine Italian wines by the glass and continual refills of sparkling mineral water. A splendid meal with fine service ends with tiramisu, hiding delightful cherries in the bottom, and a lovely dark and white chocolate mousse.