Tapeo

>>  Friday, August 20, 2010

Tapeo
Zucchini rolls, Egg potato Onion Omelette, Shrimp Ceviche, Baby Potatoes with Piquant Tomatoes and Ali Oli Sauce

Dim sum, tapas, small plates - it seems like every culture has this idea of tasting little tidbits of a wide variety of food. I personally love it, which is why tapas are so fun for me. Instead of just ordering one dish, each person gets to order two or three!

Of course, beware because single items that each only cost $5-$8 can add up quickly, and before you know it, you are spending $25-30 a person.

Nevertheless, I always love trying tapas. I had heard great things about Tapeo from others (plus I had tried their sister restaurant Dali years ago and loved it). When given a chance to sit outside on Newbury while enjoying some fine Spanish tapas, how could I say no?
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Tapeo is co-owned by Fernando Leon, who also co-owns Dali in Somerville with his parents and also Solea in Waltham. You figure they must be doing something right if they own a large chunk of the Spanish tapas restaurants in the Boston area.

I love love love the free bread. There's something about Spanish/Portuguese bread that is just so addictive to me. I love how dense it is, and subtle yet nutty flavor of the bread keeps me coming back slice after slice after slice. I can't describe it, but the bread is really really good.
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Gazpacho
Fresh and full of real tomato flavor, I enjoyed this traditional cold, Spanish soup.
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Broiled herb and garlic quail stuffed stuffed with grapes and bacon  $10.50
This quail is excellent, and probably one of the best dishes on the menu. The waitress highly recommended it, and we noticed lots of people around us ordering it as well. It's flavorful, moist, tender, and delicious. If you've never had quail before you might find the little bones to be a bit annoying to deal with, but it's worth it!
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Seafood Ceviche
I was actually disappointed with the ceviche. The shrimp was cooked more than I would have liked and thus was just a bit too tough for my tastes. The flavors were OK, but I was not particularly impressed.
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Stuffed Pimento
We also enjoyed this stuffed pimento, which may have been a special on the menu that day.
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Scallops in Saffron Cream Sauce
We were both disappointed with this dish. The small bay scallops were overcooked and on the tougher side. The cream sauce was uninteresting, and frankly, I couldn't really taste the saffron.
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Sauteed Portabella Mushrooms
This mushroom dish was fine, although I think I've prepared a better version myself at home. I kept wishing that it was a bit more charred and less steamed.

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Pork Sausage with Fig

Concluding Thoughts?
I've been here twice. I was much more impressed the first time I came (we ate the food pictured in the first collage) whereas the second time it was hit or miss. Perhaps we were lucky the first time and "hit" more often than "missed." They definitely do a good job on several of the tapas. The sausage is good, the quail is fantastic, and I enjoyed my gazpacho as well. I think they tend to overcook their shellfish sometimes, as I was not that impressed with the shrimp or the scallops.

Having said all that, I would still return. It's super fun to sit outside on Newbury Street on a nice, summer day while enjoying a bunch of different tapas. I think you can still enjoy a great meal here as long you order the right things.

Tapeo
266 Newbury St
Boston, MA 02116
Tapéo on Urbanspoon

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