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Liberatore's, Timonium Corporate Center, Timonium, (410) 561-3300....


Liberatore's, Timonium Corporate Center, Timonium, (410) 561-3300. The menu is at first glance more conventional than you might expect from Timonium's hottest new Italian restaurant, but a closer look reveals some interesting choices. Sauces were fresh-tasting and light, even the very rich ones. Ingredients were impeccably fresh and carefully prepared -- no overcooked seafood or rapidly cooling soups here. Because Liberatore's is so popular, it's more crowded than I'm comfortable with. And we never got seated in a non-smoking area. But we enjoyed the food, and the decor -- especially the cherubs -- is lots of fun. $$ to $$$ -- moderate to expensive. (Last reviewed 4/93.)

Mediterranean Palace, 5926 York Road, (410) 532-6677. This deli and carryout has, to be blunt, zero atmosphere. On the plus side, it's clean and it's cheerful, and it has interesting Middle Eastern food at rock-bottom prices. Get the sampler for a good introduction to the cuisine, from stuffed grape leaves to falafel. Or if you want more of a dinner, have the chicken kebab with salad or the vegetarian mujaddarah dinner -- lentils and rice cooked together and decorated with thin, crisp threads of fried onion. Save room for dessert; the owner makes her own and they're good. $ -- inexpensive. (Last reviewed 4/93.)

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