Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Review - Tango Tapas Restaurant & Lounge

Tango Restaurant & Lounge


I've been to Tango a bunch of times, but I have to admit, I don't really remember any of the food I've tried in the past, I only remember El Diablo, which I will discuss more below...   It's been about a year since I have dined at Tango so on a Sunday evening, while in the area, my SO and I decided to go for some small bites and El Diablo... Actually, the small bites was just a cop out.  We were going there for El Diablo.

Tango's plates are mostly Tapas style, with the exception of a few larger plates and the selection of Paella.  My SO doesn't eat seafood, so if I want to have their fantastic Paella, I have to go with someone else.

We decided to sit in one of the oversized booths in the bar, which to our surprise was actually empty.   It was a really mellow Sunday evening at Tango! We settled in, and decided that we shouldn't just dive in to dessert, we needed some actual food.  We thought three dishes should suffice.

After we placed our order, some of the fantastic cornbread like bread arrived.  It's served room temperature with a sweet butter, thankfully the butter wasn't hard.  I can't stand when restaurants serve cold butter alongside bread.    Shortly after devouring the bread, our dishes arrived.

Green Beans & Harissa $9

First, I was kind of surprised at how small the portion of green beans was.  It's available in 2 sizes, a half portion ($5) and a full portion ($9).  Our server suggested that we go for the full portion if we are sharing.  Well, I'm not a cheap diner, but $9 is pretty steep for what you see above, it looks like a half portion.  Anyways.. regardless of the price, the dish was fantastic.  The beans were crispy and covered in harissa, a spicy chile sauce, tomatoes, onions and pine nuts.  The beans were really good.  I don't think they are really worth $9 for the small portion, but they were good!

Bistec Skewers $9

Again with the overpriced small portions.  I'm still sticking with the 4 stars, because the dish was really great.  The menu described the dish as Chimichurri beef skewers with garnacha slaw and roasted tomato salsa.  The beef didn't seem like any Chimichurri I have had, but more like garlic and lime.  It was still really good and well seasoned.  The skewers sat atop the garnacha slaw of cabbage, carrots, and bell peppers and the tomato salsa. 

Croquetas de Papas $9

Crispy horseradish-potato croquettes, smoked tomato jam and Cotija cheese.  These also come in two sizes, a half portion with 2 croquetas for $5, and the full size of 4 croquetas for $9.  The horseradish flavor is really light, almost non-existent, but the croquetas were good anyways! They were fried perfectly, and the salty tang from the cheese added a great kick.  

Although the portion sized were smaller than I imagined, we were satisfied.  After all, our main reason for coming was El Diablo!

El Diablo $10

This dessert is described as, "Bittersweet cube of sinfully rich dark chocolate graced with cayenne, spicy almonds, cocoa nibs and burnt meringue finished with a tequila caramel sauce".  Cube?  What the heck is a cube?  The first time we ordered this, we didn't know what to expect.  Of course, this was years ago, before all of the El Diablo hype.  We ordered it on a chance that it might be too rich, too sweet, etc... Let me tell you, we have never looked back.   So the bittersweet cube, isn't so bitter.  I would describe it as a thick chocolate mousse, dusted with bittersweet cocoa powder.  It's rich, but not like a chocolate cake.  It has a little kick from the cayenne, but it's not too spicy at all.  It's definitely a dessert for sharing, it's pretty big.  The burnt meringue is like a soft toasted marshmallow, and the tequila flavor in the caramel is so subtle, I don't even taste it.  The salty crunchy almonds are good, I only wish there were more on the plate.  If you can open wide, and take a bite with all four elements, you will never turn back.  This is my favorite dessert in Seattle, and quite possibly my favorite dessert anywhere!

Tango Restaurant & Lounge
Capitol Hill
1100 Pike St
Seattle, WA 98101
Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm, Friday - Saturday 5:00pm - midnight
Happy Hour: Wednesday-Monday - 4:30pm - 6pm, Tuesday - All night in the Bar only
Tango on Urbanspoon

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