Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Long tenure not enough to save Tapeo

Whether for recreation or work most of us from the Granite State visit Boston. We found ourselves in the city and decided to try Tapeo, a tapas focused establishment on Newbury Street. It’s worth noting that the restaurant has been in business for thirteen years which is impressive given that so many close after a short time.

The decor fit the vibe with Spanish style decorations throughout on the walls. After we sat down my wife looked over the cocktail list and noticed one of her favorites, sangria. There were several options and she chose the berry but when it arrived she couldn't detect any berry flavor. She questioned the waitress and was told that it was indeed what she ordered. However, when the check arrived, it clearly said it was the red sangria.

In the spirit of their specialty, tapas, we decided to sample several from their large menu.

Gambas al Ajillo Sizzling Garlic Shrimp

This was my favorite out of the bunch because of the strong garlic flavor. Served so very hot the sauce boils and bubbles and tastes as if they dumped in a whole clove. My preference would be the use of larger shrimp but the smaller ones still work well in this dish.

Aceitunas Aliñadas Imported Marinated Olives

We do love olives and this was a nice mixture. The only downer were the pits inside and our wish is that these be removed. Maybe I'm just lazy but anything to make the process of eating less messy is always appreciated.

Pipirrana de Buey Beef Tenderloin, Potato Hash, Pimenton & Valdeon Cheese

The cheese has the consistency of sour cream and of course that goes with potato anything. The meat is what you would expect with no toughness to the bite. This was our second best selection of the night and one that we would recommend.

Patatas Fritas Basque Fries with Valdeón Blue Cheese Fondue

Because you can’t have enough potatoes, right? The flavor was good and the blue cheese covering didn't hurt either.

Espinacas Gallegas Sautéed Baby Spinach, Garlic, Pine Nuts & Golden Raisins

Well, my wife complains that I never eat any greens or vegetables. I assumed she would enjoy this dish more than I would and she was correct since I ate very little of this one. She liked the sweetness of the raisins which offset the slightly bitterness of the spinach.

Buñuelos Broccoli & Cauliflower Fritters

I'm not going to sugar coat this because it was our worst plate of the evening. The description and the presentation made us think this was going to be amazing but it failed big time. When the fritters initially arrived at the table they had a beautiful gold brown color but they were barely warm so we sent them back. Although the second batch was hotter the coating was too heavy. You should skip this one.

And finally for desert, our pick was the Chocolate Almond Cake

After eating so many plates we really could have skipped dessert but decided that something sweet would be a good way to end the meal. Luckily, the portion was small. There wasn’t much almond flavor and it was ok but nothing that we would order again.

Overall our visit had a few bright spots and some disappointments. We had hoped for more from a restaurant that has been a presence on Newbury Street for so long.

 Address: 286 Newbury St. Boston, MA. 02116

 Phone: (617)267-4799

 Website: www.tapeo.com