It's been a while since I've reviewed any local restaurants, but I have a special one to write about today. Mãe Maria is a new Portuguese restaurant and deli, in Canton, Cardiff. They had their grand opening last week, and I was pleased to get an invitation. I went with my husband, and we were treated to an impressive spread of tapas and main dishes, along with some wine tasting. It felt quite festive also, as the restaurant had their Christmas decorations up.
The tapas was very Mediterranean in feel, with olives, dips, breads, salads and sea food. There were some particularly good cheeses. It was the main dishes I was very keen to try, and I wasn't disappointed. My favourite was the pork with chestnuts and black pudding. There was a beautiful tasting octopus dish also.
I have to admit that I hadn't tried Portuguese wine before - well, apart from Mateus Rose in the '80s! It was all very good - I tried three, forgive me! The red and white were very similar to some Spanish wines I've tried, which makes sense given the geography. I am not a fan of rose wines usually, I find them terribly sweet, but the rose I tried here was crisp and dry. Lovely!
The restaurant is in two sections - dining on one side, and a deli and more casual section on the other. They serve breakfasts and coffees as well as lunches and dinners, and they have a bar on both sides. The menu is very reasonably priced, I think the pork dish I liked was around £11 and was one of the more expensive items. They also do set menus that are great value, with different dishes on different days of the week. Will I go back? Of course!
You can visit Mãe Maria on Facebook here.