After languishing empty for several years, the prominent Inner Harbor space once occupied by Legal Sea Foods has a new tenant, Brio Tuscan Grille (100 E. Pratt St., 410-637-3440). The national chain, which also has a location in Annapolis, specializes in Italian food inspired by Tuscany. It’s debatable whether we need another trattoria in Baltimore, but Brio provides a fun atmosphere and well-prepared food that will appeal to downtown visitors. On a recent visit, I ordered grilled shrimp with orzo ($14.95, lunch). It was a lovely melding of fresh, bright ingredients, featuring jumbo shrimp, asparagus, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes in a tangy lemon vinaigrette. In nice weather, the restaurant doors open to allow fresh breezes into the dining room with soaring ceilings, handsome arches, and an open kitchen. But bring your outdoor voice. The noise level makes it difficult to hear your server—and vice versa.
<p>Brio Tuscan Grille fills Inner Harbor gap.</p>
Issue date: May, 2012