Sunday, October 4, 2009


Matilda [647 E. 11th St. (bet. Aves. B and C), Menu]

Mexican + Italian = Matilda. It's a combination that I can truly say I've never seen before and at Matilda it's pulled off wonderfully. In my visit, my friends and I stuck to the simple small plates and I must say that I'm excited to go back and try some more. For starters, we had the guacamole and the bruschetta. The guac had both a twist and a kick to it that was different from the traditional Mexican flavors. Better yet, in addition to the standard tortilla chips, it came with warm, freshly baked focaccia bread for dipping. This was an inspired idea. Meanwhile, the bruschetta also managed to straddle the line between the cuisines (jalapeno olive oil is a pretty clever ingredient) and I would definitely order it again.

For our main course, my friends and I split the tacos so that we could all have one each of the three on offer (you can only order them in sets of three). Each order came with even more guac and was delicious, but if I were alone and had to choose one, I would take the Alla Fiorentina, which features rare filet mignon and does the best job of incorporating both sides of the Mexican and Italian cooking styles. In terms of decor, Matilda is sleek and well-designed, but not intimidating. When you sit down for dinner there, see if you can find the drink menu...

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