Even though we got married about seven weeks ago, Adam and I decided to celebrate one last dating anniversary Friday and went to dinner at Cinghiale to celebrate! Cinghiale is a Foreman Wolf restaurant, as is Charleston (IMO the ultimate splurge to end all splurges restaurant in Baltimore) and Petite Louis Bistro. We had heard mixed things about Cinghiale, but have had fantastic meals at the other two restaurants so we decided to try it out. It was a great spot for young(ish) people who want a little splurge, but don’t want to break the bank. We each got the four course prezzo fisso for $62 which allowed us to try a nice variety of dishes. We also aren’t huge drinkers and only had one cocktail or glass of wine each –> this isn’t for everyone, but it definitely helped keep our final bill more reasonable.
After we were seated and ordered our drinks, our waiter brought us a small sampling of cheese and crackers with what I think was a sort of tomato jam. I used to be more into soft cheeses, but lately I’ve been digging the hard cheese and this one was delicious! For my first course, I started with the grilled calamari with crispy carrots. I felt like the portion was surprisingly large and very tasty! I did think it was a little heavy on the red pepper flakes which the dish didn’t really need.
For my primi course I got the squid ink farfalle with lobster and for my main course I got the pork belly with poached egg. The lobster meat in the pasta was ample and delicious, but the pasta itself didn’t wow me and again, heavy on the red pepper flakes. The pork belly and poached egg (pictured below) were delicious and served with a small disk of crispy polenta. By this point I was very full, but still managed to eat most it. The curly green things you see are fiddlehead ferns which I had never heard of, but apparently Martha Stewart can tell you what to do with them and one website refers to them as the “succulent stalks of spring” and they were pretty tasty – sort of comparable to a more chewy asparagus.
I’m kicking myself because I can’t remember what this dessert was called, but I think it had salted caramel ice cream and grilled bananas and it was very tasty!
All in all, we had a great time! The food was a little inconsistent but the service was outstanding and it felt like a special date night spot.
Location: Harbor East, 822 Lancaster St, Baltimore, MD 21202
Highlights: The service, complimentary cheese, interesting menu, fantastic dessert and very tasty grilled calamari.