Mateo

by Emily Kane on July 24, 2011

1837 Pearl Street

★★★★

After opening in 2001 Mateo has quickly become one of Boulder’s most popular upscale restaurants. Based on Provencal French food, Mateo brings a little bit of France to Boulder. And with an extensive French and Italian wine list it has something for every self proclaimed sommelier.

To begin, I ordered the mussels (moules). Like Radda, Chef Matthew Jansen’s other restaurant, the mussels are served in a tomato garlic wine sauce, as opposed to the traditional white wine butter sauce. I really love this alternative sauce and the subtle spice adds an unexpected element to the dish. With plenty of mussels to be shared, this was a perfect appetizer to warm up the palate (and the sauce is perfect for dipping!).

Next, I ordered the salade verte. A simple plate of butter lettuce arrived topped with walnuts and a dijon viangrette. After the mussels, the simplicity was a nice break between larger courses.

For my main entree I ordered the Mateo Burger. The thick patty arrived smothered in caramelized onions, gruyère cheese, and tucked between two large buns. The gruyère cheese and onions were a wonderful mix and a really nice alternative to the traditional cheddar. Although not a traditionally French dish, the aioli sauce (a French garlic mayonnaise) turned the American burger into Provencal fare. The burger patty itself was heartily sized and packed with juicy flavor. It was most definitely one of my favorite burgers I’ve had in Boulder.

Although titled “pot de creme,” this desert was more reminiscent of chocolate lava cake. Underneath the warm layer of chocolate cake, the interior was bursting with a liquid fudge and topped with cold crème anglaise. This dessert was rich enough for a king!

The upscale atmosphere at Mateo caters to an older clientele and is a perfect location for business dinners or casual get-togethers. With impeccable service and fantastic food, I highly suggestive Mateo the next time you’re feeling a longing for the French countryside!

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