Modesto's Tapas Bar and Restaurant

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5257 Shaw Ave, Saint Louis, MO, USA

Modesto's Tapas Bar and Restaurant Saint Louis Reviews

sukiyakihotsake sukiyaki…
9 reviews
Jul 16, 2007
Modesto's is a really nicely decorated eatery. The walls were painted in yellow, orange, and red, with black tables. The open kitchen area covers one wall of the joint and from the tables opposite you can view the chefs cooking and platting your dishes. Modesto's is a little expensive, at least to me. The cheapest tapas was 5 bucks and they are all small appetizers that you could fit in the palm of your hand. So if you go be prepared to spend at least 20 bucks not including drinks (beer is no less then 3.50 a bottle for Budwieser products).

I don't know if any of you reading this have had spanish tapas before, but its a "fun" style of eating. To put it short, its all appatizers. Some dishes are more substantial then others and they can be either hot or cold. Tapas actually started out as being a piece of bread put over a glass of wine to keep flys out. So, with every glass you would get a small piece of bread to eat with it. People were digging the bread idea, so someone decided to place thin slices of meat over the top of the glass, and from there it expanded to actual appetizers to eat with drinks in the company of friends.

Some places serve breadsticks as a free appetizer, others chips and salsa; Modesto has tapenade and bread. Tapanade is a salty black olive spread made with garlic and anchovies which is delicious! I ordered coca catalana as my first tapas which was flatbread covered with anchovies, peppers, cheese and onion, served warm. It was like a small pizza, but drier. The flatbread crust was soft, and the cheese had a slight bitter taste which went well with the sweetness of the carmelized onion. After finishing that, I opted for a cold dish to switch things up called Espárragos con Salsa Alioli; Asparagus spears cut into 2 inch long sticks stacked lincon-log style with bits of hard boiled egg and alioli sauce on top. I didn't care for the lincoln-log presentation, but the asparagus was cooked perfectly, retaining a crispyness that made them snap with every bite. My next dish was Calamares Fritos; fried calamari and peppers with salbitxada, a mild pink sauce tasting as if made of bell peppers, mayonaise, and tomatoes. The calamari wasnt too greasy and the breading was almost like panko crumbs, alot better then being battered like a corndog as in some places. Lastly I had a small, really small, cup of espresso with natural brown sugar cubes. I have never had espresso until then. To me it's just really strong coffee. It wasn't bad, but 2 bucks a cup is a little much.

I give Modesto's 3 stars. The food was good but pricy. I certainly see the appeal in going, though; heading out to a bar with a couple of friends and sharing all sorts of differnt small exotic appetizers (instead of your standard bar food consisting of cheese sticks, chicken wings, and the like). Gives you another reason to plan that trip to Spain!
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