In Italian we say Più Di. In German it’s Mehr Als. And in Catalan Spanish; it’s Més Que! They all mean “More Than”.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup is over and Futbol fans were watching from the edge of their seats. Much to Spain’s disappointment, they crashed out in the round of 16 to the surprising host team Russia, who moved on to the quarter finals joined by England, Sweden, Brazil, Belgium, Croatia, Uruguay, and France. But Spain has not given up and despite this year’s outcome they’ll be back with ferocity, hoping for a good showing in the European Championship in two year’s time.
It’s because they are “Més Que un club”. More than a club.
While the tv screens blast current standings and announce the next game, Més Que prepares for the next rush. It’s the quiet before the storm. For now, the subdued lighting, the twinkling lights on the patio and the peaceful hour before dinner service begins seems like the right time to test the menu.
I opened with a glass of Torre di Luna Sauvignon Blanc, Venice ($8) because I was in the mood for seafood of some kind. I decided on the Penne with Prawns ($12.00) – “Penne tossed with prawns, arugula and roma tomatoes in a garlic white wine broth topped with fresh mozzarella”. For an appetizer I ordered a Cheese Plate ($10.00).
While I waited an order of fresh crusty bread arrived with an herbed, olive oil and balsamic dipping sauce ($0); so, I put that to good use.
The cheese plate arrived, and I really enjoyed the rustic presentation of 4 cheeses, nuts, berries and jam. I love the flavor of Manchego cheese. Originating in the La Mancha region of Spain; it has truly amazing flavor. I passed on the Maytag Blu. In deference to all WNY – I never grew accustomed to Blue Cheese. (My apologies to Duff’s, the Anchor Bar, and Wing Fest.) I moved on to the Grana Padano (Italy) which I paired with some apricot jam and some of the crusty bread. Delish. The Boucheron was missing from my plate but they had substituted an equally tasty “house” goat cheese. I imagined a goat or two in a hidden paddock behind the restaurant and I was going to ask the server if he really meant “house- made” but opted to just enjoy my appetizer instead. It was a nice app and certainly enough for two people to nosh on.
I was ‘very’ impressed with this simple dish – penne with prawns. The prawns were cooked ‘perfectly’. Spot on! The penne with arugula, tomatoes and a light wine sauce were really a great pairing. The mozzarella added a little salty counterpoint to the sweetness of the seafood and wine sauce. Altogether so simple, yet so amazing; I’ll be ordering that one again. The bar was beginning to fill up and diners were filing in the door and, with the patio nearly full, it was time for me to exit.
Més Que is ‘more than’ a Hertel Avenue restaurant. It’s a place to gather with friends, get romantic, and get excited. No matter what your sport.
Ambiance: Low-lighting, dark interior, romantic settings – or – loud and cheering at game time.
Menu: Apps, small plates, and entrees with significant thought into food pairing.
Service: Some good assists by other staff members. (I think my server was still a rookie).
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