Cuisine: Tony Chittum is as dedicated a craftsman as chefs come. The cod in his parsnip chowder? Smoked in-house. Pastas and sausages? He makes those, too. Influences range from Greece and Italy to the Eastern Shore, but the common denominator is a hearty simplicity that lets every ingredient shine.
Mood: A bordellolike brick-and-velvet space done up with flickering gaslights. The excellent cocktails—a gin fizz with port/pear reduction, old-school hot buttered rum—keep the mood around the bar high.
Best for: Dates you want to lean closer to (it can get loud); dinner with parents; cocktails and a few nibbles; weekend brunch, one of the best around.
Best dishes: Parsnip chowder; butternut-squash soup sprinkled with crushed almond cookies; lamb sausage with chestnut; charcuterie board with both rustic, spicy lonza (cured smoked pork loin) and Armagnac-slicked duck pâté; seafood salad topped with a stone-crab claw; rockfish with crispy oysters.
Insider tips: The lounge menu is less expensive and full of big plates designed to be split, such as the charcuterie and cheese board, hush puppies with sweet pickles, and a light fritto misto.
Open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday and Sunday for brunch and dinner. Expensive.