A few blocks east of the Cross Island Parkway, Mateus offers a taste of Portugal.
Entry is through the bar, which I noticed was well stocked with more than 100 different bottles of wine from all over the world but most from Portugal.
Hosted by Ilidio Chaves, the dining room is modest in size with a party room further in the rear.
Tastefully decorated, the ambient sound level allows easy conversation across the table — a wonderful change from so many so called “in” dining spots where you have to either yell across the table or keep silent because no one can hear you.
Attentive service starts right away. The wait staff is pleasant and knowledgeable, answering cuisine questions with an ease that makes selecting your meal a delight.
Beverage service is moderately priced with a bottle of Portuguese Dao wine available for $15 and mixed drinks at equally affordable prices.
Appetizers such as Mussels with green sauce and parsley were delicious, and broiled calamari was just so light and tender I will not go back to fried again.
Salad is more than ample for the table and very fresh. Two of us ordered the 1 ½ pound lobster with broccoli and snow peas and they arrived with oysters, shrimp and clams on the plate so beautifully presented that we had to take a picture of it.
Another order was for Picanah steak, which came in two large pieces that were cooked to perfection and served with beans and rice. We had to put part of it aside because we couldn’t eat it all. A constant favorite of mine is the grilled pork chop, which arrived with a light glaze, tender and juicy.
Almond cake with caramel sauce dessert recommended by the staff was joined by red velvet cake, both of which really topped off the evening.
All this for less than $90 per couple including tip. In our opinion, Mateus is a great value. Try it, you’ll love it.
Mateus Restaurant & Bar
222-05 Jamaica Avenue, Queens Village
Open Monday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 6 to 10 p.m.
Sunday until 8 p.m.
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