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Pazo. Baltimore.


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Tom says Cindy Wolf has another good thing going on.

"Compelling recipes, a handsome space, service with a smile -- a meal at this "grand house" adds up to a transporting evening. A class act in spite of its youth, Pazo wears its name well."

"Mine goes off like a rocket." -- Tom Sietsema, Washington Post, Feb. 16.

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I like Pazo a lot and it is a semi regular stop for us. We have tried enough of the menu to have favorites – the slow cooked lamb, pasta with veal and pork ragu, the spinach with pine nuts, chorizo and grilled potatoes and my personal fav - I think of it as a grown up version of fish and chips – grilled bronzini with lemon, olive oil and dill on top of a slice of fried potato. Ultra yum. And, just as all the other Wolf/Foreman restaurants, they have great cheeses. The staff is helpful and well trained and the wine list is shockingly reasonable.

It is set in an old warehouse between Harbor East and Fells Point. The space is huge and big money was sunk into the interior. On weekends during prime time, it gets crowded beyond belief, I much prefer weeknights. It isn’t always perfect- I’m not sure that perfection is possible in a place of that size- but I enjoy it and it is a very welcome addition.

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Tom says Cindy Wolf has another good thing going on.

Not that it really matters, but I was under the impression that Cindy was not directly involved in this one. Although I have seen her checking in on the line after Charleston hours.

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Just one note: Pazo means "Grand House" in galician dialect Galicia is about 1000 miles away from Catalonia in the Atlantic coast, not the Mediterranean. Thats where the octopus with paprika and potatoes comes from.

Rogelio Enríquez aka "Rogelio"
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Just one note: Pazo means "Grand House" in galician dialect. Galicia is about 1000 miles away from Catalonia in the Atlantic coast, not the Mediterranean. Thats where the octopus with paprika and potatoes comes from.

Rogelio Enríquez aka "Rogelio"
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I've made several trips now, and keep going back. Reservations are tough on weekends and with this review will get even harder :sad: (also I wonder if Sietsema read my review on the *other* board before he wrote his?) If you come over after going to Charleston they seem willing to help facilitate getting you in if you ask. If you show up early, like 5-5:30pm, you should be ok, even on Saturday.

There is a mezzanine with a good view of the whole space, and it is quieter up there. You can order from the entire menu while sitting on the sofas in the lounge and there are big cocktail tables to put everything on.

Corkage is not allowed we were told on one visit, and on another were told "only for special occasions."

Once the place is full the staff are practically running to get orders filled, and the orders come out of sync - too soon, too late, so order as you go rather than all at once in the beginning of the meal, despite their assurances to the contrary.

I have enjoyed: grilled prawns, chorizo and roast potatoes, grilled sardines, grilled calamari (whole tubes stuffed with julienne of green apple), shrimp with garlic, and grilled lambchops. Also the braised veal cheeks and rabbit were hits last time we went. The beets with pancetta are marinated in orange vinaigrette, I like them a lot even if Tom didn't. The pappa fritta, ripple potato chips, are very good and the generous order of whole wheat peasant bread is perfect for sopping up tapas juices and oils and spreading cheese on, and there really is a generous selection of cheeses. Desserts include a forgettable creme catalan (brulee) and a good chocolate torte and a fruit tart du jour.

The music starts to crank up as tables are vacated downstairs later in the evening, and the floor is cleared for dancing and the dj takes over. They continue to serve tapas until 1:00 a.m. in the lounge and it stays open until 2:00 am.

Edited by Crackers (log)
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Corkage is not allowed we were told on one visit, and on another were told "only for special occasions." 

Actually, it is illegal to bring alcohol into an establishment with a liquor license in the state of Maryland. If any restaurant allows you to do so they are allowing it at their own risk.

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Not that it really matters, but I was under the impression that Cindy was not directly involved in this one.  Although I have seen her checking in on the line after Charleston hours.

That is, if you call running the show, not being directly involved.

As I understood, this was her/their concept, did the traveling and devised the menu, hired the chef de cuisine, (and everyone else too I thought, including the amazing new bread guy, and also brought a few from Charleston over), along with Tony's business acumen and wine expertise. Cindy/Tony run a VERY TIGHT SHIP: they are savvy, serious and perfectionists in their endeavors, and it shows. Their training is quite rigorous and demanding.

I can't believe Pazo's success is not due to her DIRECT involvement.

I like to cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.

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Not that it really matters, but I was under the impression that Cindy was not directly involved in this one.  Although I have seen her checking in on the line after Charleston hours.

That is, if you call running the show, not being directly involved.

As I understood, this was her/their concept, did the traveling and devised the menu, hired the chef de cuisine, (and everyone else too I thought, including the amazing new bread guy, and also brought a few from Charleston over), along with Tony's business acumen and wine expertise. Cindy/Tony run a VERY TIGHT SHIP: they are savvy, serious and perfectionists in their endeavors, and it shows. Their training is quite rigorous and demanding.

I can't believe Pazo's success is not due to her DIRECT involvement.

I'm also under the impression that Pazo, as my favorite server at Charleston told me, is "Tony's thing." But, I certainly have no trouble believing that she participated in the travel and had input - they are married, after all. And, I've also seen her on the line at Pazo.

All this talk of Pazo reminded me that I hadn't been in a few weeks so I had yet another great dinner there last night. It was the first time I've been there since day light savings time kicked in and the early evening light coming through that huge window is lovely.

Edited by misscindy (log)
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I am actually headed up to Pazo tonight from DC for dinner. I will report back on the overall experience

Enjoyed a great dinner this past Friday at Pazo. When we got there the entrance was roped off and there was a bouncer complete with clipboard and earphone to ask us if we had a reservation. I found this funny since, after all, this is Baltimore and not New York and South Beach, but hey, at least they are trying.

We had a drink at the bar while we waited for our table. The bar area was pretty crowded, with quite a few single 40 something men with receding hairlines trying futilely to scope out their "prey"

Upon sitting down we were greeted by our waiter, Ben, and ordered a bottle of a 2003 Falanghina from Campania which was the perfect accompaniment to the several small plates we ordered. Ben was very helpful in answering our questions and candid in telling us which dishes he preferred

The small plates are divided into three categories: Land, Sea & Field, and we sampled some from each. From the land category we had the pappardelle with ragu di carne, a homemade pappardelle pasta with pork and lamb ragu and shaved pecorino. This was my favorite dish of the night, the pasta was perfectly cooked and the pecorino provided a wonderful sharpness that rounded out the dish. Also from the land section we had the veal cheeks over what I believe was a pumpkin puree, the veal was fork tender but I found the sauce overwhelmed the dish a bit. From the sea section we had the shrimp with garlic & tomato drizzled in extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with a few red pepper flakes and the involtini di tonno which was tuna stuffed with capers, raisins & pine nuts. Normally, I wouldn’t order something like this, but we gave it a try and it all the components worked great together. The Field courses were a chickpea pancake which was just average and a special fougasse with peppers baked in it. The fougasse was almost like a pretzel, crunchy on the outside yet dense and moist inside. This was fantastic. Our last small plate was an orange, endive and pine nut salad with basil, fresh chevre and EVOO. Ben suggested that this be served last because of the goat cheese and the sweetness of the oranges and basil.

For dessert we had an order of Cabrales cheese, which was served with some sort of twists. The cheese itself was fantastic, as I love Cabrales, but the twists did not fit for some reason. I had a glass of a dessert wine from wine from France which reminded me a lot of a Taylor Fladgate 20 year old port I had recently. This made a wonderful partner to the cabrales.

Total for the evening with tax and over a 20% tip was $100 on the nose. Excellent value for the food and service. My only gripe is that it does get very loud and sometimes it makes hearing what your server is saying quite difficult. I would gladly come back to Pazo even though I live in Bethesda.

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I am actually headed up to Pazo tonight from DC for dinner. I will report back on the overall experience

Enjoyed a great dinner this past Friday at Pazo. When we got there the entrance was roped off and there was a bouncer complete with clipboard and earphone to ask us if we had a reservation. I found this funny since, after all, this is Baltimore and not New York and South Beach, but hey, at least they are trying.

I think the bouncer with clipboard and earphone is there on weekends because the place gets so packed they probably have to take care not to violate fire codes. I don't think it has a whole lot to do with "trying" to be like New York and South Beach, at least I certainly hope not. Believe me, Baltimoreans are under no illusion that we are in ____ (insert your favorite city here). And, most of us are ok with that.

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I am actually headed up to Pazo tonight from DC for dinner. I will report back on the overall experience

Enjoyed a great dinner this past Friday at Pazo. When we got there the entrance was roped off and there was a bouncer complete with clipboard and earphone to ask us if we had a reservation. I found this funny since, after all, this is Baltimore and not New York and South Beach, but hey, at least they are trying.

I think the bouncer with clipboard and earphone is there on weekends because the place gets so packed they probably have to take care not to violate fire codes. I don't think it has a whole lot to do with "trying" to be like New York and South Beach, at least I certainly hope not. Believe me, Baltimoreans are under no illusion that we are in ____ (insert your favorite city here). And, most of us are ok with that.

Yes, but velvet rope, come on.... a little too much show. Also, he acted like he was doig us a favor by letting us in.

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