Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Contemporary Mexican

IMG 9359
Eastside Road, August 9, 2016—
PRINCIPAL MEAL of the day, we agreed as we drove in to town for a late lunch with a couple of friends. They'd suggested Mateo's, a restaurant I've been wanting to try for some time now. Mateo is a fine cook; he was chef at Charles Palmer's Healdsburg Hotel restaurant when it opened years ago, and while waiting to find a location for his own restaurant he ran a catering business that resulted in pop-up restaurants here and there, now and then. He's an artist, as I've mentioned here before.

Monday, 1:30 pm: the place was cool and nearly empty; a few tables were occupied out on the patio, but only one other inside, where we preferred the cool air and the quiet, inviting room. We began with margaritas, of course; then I went on to something substantial: Bistec Yucanteco, slowly braised beef in a thick Yucatan sauce with cubed potatoes, covered with tomato sauce and a few slices of raw red onion. This was piquant and satisfying, and so were the braised vegetables alongside: zucchini and summer squash, snow peas, green beans.

The plate is flanked with the inevitable rice and beans — black beans with a smoky, deep flavor; short-grain rice. A nice dish.

•Mateo's Cocina Latina, 214 Healdsburg Avenue, Healdsburg; 707-433-1520

RESTAURANTS VISITED, with information and rating:  2016   2015

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