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Posts Tagged ‘Mediterranean Food’

My wife and I were driving through Greenwood Sunday afternoon looking for a place to get a meal. We decided to try something new and chose The Olive and Grape. When I think of olives and grapes, the Mediterranean comes to mind and upon entering, this spot definitely fit the bill.  We came in from the back entrance, were greeted and asked to sit anywhere we liked. Our server immediately offered coffee, Turkish tea or water  and handed us our menus. It is a quaint little restaurant that looked like it could seat about 30-35 patrons. White paint with blue trimmed walls and hand painted olive trees really add to the Greek/Mediterranean theme. There’s a good sized counter that could be used as a bar, but instead, displays several different varieties of olive oil and wine. It is adjacent to the open kitchen where you can watch the cooks prepare the orders. Looking through the menu took a little longer than usual because most all the dishes, being Turkish and Greek, were foreign to me. I had to read the descriptions and ingredients to see what each dish was.

entry way from greenwood ave.

popular pairings list behind counter/bar

 

The Food:

spinach & feta gozleme with side of tzatziki 

nonna’s spaghetti polpettini 

baklava

 

The Review:

I looked for something that was both new and somewhat familiar. I chose the Golzeme – which is described as a “Turkish quesadilla.” The only filling they had that day was spinach and feta. It was so-so. The “hand rolled” pastry looked and tasted just like naan bread with a barely there filling of spinach and feta. Imagine a single slice of deli meat, and you’ve just pictured how much filling was in this gozleme! The filling was so minuscule that I could barely taste the feta, which is a strong flavor cheese! The tzatziki added a nice cool and mildy sour compliment to the dish and might have been the best part of the meal. The menu also stated it would come with a side of sambal, a spicy chili, which would have been nice, had  I received it. I chose garlic fries as my side item, which was also, just ok. Feta and parsley were sprinkled atop the fries which also had a side of tzatziki. There was no taste of garlic at all – disppointed!

My wife had Nonna’s Spaghetti Polpettini. It came in a small bowl with 6 meatballs atop a bed of pasta with zuchini shavings, fresh basil and grated parmigiano. The pasta was cooked perfectly and the tomato-mascarpone sauce had the makings to be a very good sauce. The initial taste of the sauce was very good especially with the zuchini shavings, but then it was overshadowed by the saltiness. The meatballs also had a lot of potential. The initial bite was bursting with flavors of herbs and spices, but again, it was overshadowed by a salty aftertaste. Think of a tequila shot: the kick from licking the salt, a quick burn from the tequila and then the sour-cooling relief of the lemon…but in reverse.

To end the meal, we both shared an order of baklava – another highlight. The filo dough was nice and flaky and went well with the rich syrup and nuts. It was served with a halved strawberry which when eaten together, was really delicious! The clean and cool texture of the strawberry really helped cut the richness of the syrup.

 

My Conclusion:

The Olive and Grape has potential to be something really good. I’m not sure if it was my personal taste, but the entrées we shared were both too salty for my liking. Maybe we came in on an “off” day for the cooks, but this place definitely has promise. The Olive and Grape is also particpating in the upcoming Seattle Restaurant Week , should anyone want to sample a larger portion of the menu. By the time we left, the restaurant was nearly at capacity, which tells me there’s something good at The Olive and Grape… I just didn’t find it.

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