Mateo
Mateo

Mateo

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.mateotapas.com/
  • Phone: 9195308700x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Tuesday - Thursday 11:30 am - 2:30 pm and 5:00 - 10:30 pm; Friday 11:30 am - 2:30 pm and 5:00 pm - 12:00 am; Saturday 5:00 pm - 12:00 am and Sunday 5:00 - 9:30.
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Spanish, Tapas / Small Plates
  • Executive Chef: Matthew Kelly
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar

Getting there

  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: There is a small lot beside our restaurant as well as street parking. There is also a large parking lot located behind Mateo on Ramseur St.
A word from Mateo
Spanish Heart / Southern Soul from the crew at Vin Rouge.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
Mateo reviews from OpenTable diners
274 reviews since May 19, 2014
Overall Rating4.5
  • Food4.6
    Service4.4
  • Ambiance4.3
    Noise LevelEnergetic
96% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (234)hot spot (144)special occasion (128)notable wine list (104)neighborhood gem (100)vibrant bar scene (84)romantic (80)good for groups (68)late-night find (45)great for lunch (30)great for brunch (8)scenic view (4)kid-friendly (1)Show More
  • Awesome
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 9/14/2014
    simply awesome always a great dinning experience. I would definitely recommend this restaurant to anyone. it's a real jewel!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Authentic but with twist
    DoriVIP
    Dined on 9/14/2014
    We went for dinner to mateo! EBay a wonderful place! Service was fantastic and tapas were delicious ! The croquetas, pato con arroz ,sangria, were all so tasty and fresh . Everything on menu including desserts are made to highest standards. There's a southern twist with local ingredients and delicious toppings on some dishes. Must go!!!! Highly recommend
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • sarahwalker
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    The food was delicious at Mateo, but the service was terrible. Our waiter seemed to have forgotten about us most of the evening, and we missed out on many opportunities to order more small plates.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fantastic meal at Mateo
    CandilahVIP
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    If you are headed to the Carolina Theater, I highly recommend Mateo as a pre-show dinner spot. The tapas were delicious and the service was outstanding.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • excellent tapas
    davidVIP
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    There is a downstairs area with a bar, as well as an upstairs area that is a little less crowded and noisy, though still very energetic. Even upstairs, my wife and I had to raise our voices to hear one another, and my mother, who wears hearing aids, had a very difficult time. Our server was fast and attentive. We split the gazpacho, rabbit, bone marrow, sweetbreads, shrimp, and blood sausage tapas; in addition, the waiter erroneously keyed in one of our choices as short ribs, which he brought to our table, and which we ended up getting for free. We split the chorros and bread pudding desserts. Each of the choices was delicious. We definitely plan to return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • waning quality
    oysterlover
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Mateos was a welcome and exciting addition to the downtown dinner options. But with time, it seems to be sliding in quality. The tapas dishes have wonderful sauces that nicely lend themselves to dipping with bread. But this doesn't come with a meal, one has to ask, and while it is usually provided, why not just bring it? The bread pudding was truly exceptional when the restaurant first opened. That is no longer the case, and it just isn't exciting any longer. Some dishes quality are uneven, and hard to tell. Food is expensive for the quantity provided. Mateo's is capable of doing better, as they did when they first opened. Service is quite solid, once you are seated. Nice and extensive selection of wine and sherry options.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Do not miss this place.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    The entire experience was great. Wait staff ( John) very knowledgeable .. !
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    The food, the service were both fantastic. Such unusual tapas, fun to share plates
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Mateo charms!
    LorinanaVIP
    Dined on 9/11/2014
    Went to this neighborhood gem in downtown Durham with friends and spent a delightful few hours oohing and sawing over the food. From the bacon wrapped dates to the short ribs and fried okra, the food was fresh, hot and the tastes jumped off the plate. It was our first visit but won't be our last!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good food, fun experience
    SMaxVIP
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    Enjoyed the ambiance and great conversation over multiple delicious and various tapas plates!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • A great time
    herbamey
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    We went with friends and had yet another great time at Mateo sampling dishes.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Overrated
    Oakparkfoodie
    Dined on 9/5/2014
    We felt the food was not freshly prepared. It was ready in the kitchen and as we ordered it we got all 6 dishes within 5 minutes. We had finished eating within 35 minutes of us arriving. Thought the starters we really very small portions. The Sangria was very good.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A new favorite dish
    LocalDINKs
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    Already a fan of Mateo. Was disappointed with super salty duck and chorizo/succotash dishes last time, so tried some new things. So glad I did. Hanger steak will join the ribs and dates on the "must order" list. (New rule: everyone has to order their own ribs!) Thanks to the waiter who didn't hesitate to bring two skinny chicks a plate of sliced baguette to lay in the spectacularly delicious pool of lemony olive oil under the shrimp. Downstairs can get noisy on a busy weekend night, but was comfortably "social" on this weeknight visit.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Amazing!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    Went with a group and got a variety of apps and everyone got sandwiches or salads and everything was amazing. Simple ideas with unique twists that you wouldn't think of.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Nice spot!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    Nice spot in downtown Durham. Great food, device and atmosphere. Looking forward to going back. The wait staff was excellent at recommending options and the food was delicious. Very accommodating to my wife's gluten allergy. And the Cheerwine Sangria was awesome.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fabulous food, service, but loud
    budwom
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    We have been to Mateo several times, and each time the food and service have been truly outstanding. Wonderful, inventive food. I enjoyed the grilled Octopus, sauteed sweetbreads, and "chicken fried chicken," all of which were terrific. So many good choice, it's difficult to decide what to order. Just be advised that the restaurant (due to hard floor, walls, high ceilings) is ultra loud, so it's certainly not right for a quiet evening. But we absolutely love the place and look forward to returning many times. Too bad we live 800 miles away...
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great date night spot
    ajkline
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Went to Mateo this past weekend for the first time and was pleasantly surprised. My wife and I sat in the upstairs room which was very unique. The waitress gave us great advice on dishes and how to order. Food was delicious and we'll definitely be going back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The food is excellent!
    DurHamDude
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    My wife and I ordered drinks, 4 tapas and 1 dessert between the two of us for $80. All of the food was pretty much excellent, although the roasted smoked vegetables (a special), the ham sampler, and the bread pudding really stood out. The ambience is hip and loud, which is pretty typical of trendy restaurants in Durham. I'd recommend this place for a fun night out or for business, but not so much for an intimate date.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food
    Guilauda
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Second time at Mateo and another good experience. Really good food.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing food. Wonderful evening
    K8TK8TS
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Creative quality tapas served in generous portions. A bit young and loud, but otherwise heaven for any foodie. Enormous selection ranging from the traditional to creative modern dishes. We will absolutely return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Fear of upstairs
    Helen
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    We arrived to a busy place on Saturday evening. Then they told us we would be seated upstairs. I always worry when you are eating outside the main dining area. Great surprise--it was quite lovely and much more quiet. The wait staff was very attentive and there were no delays in service. Excellent meal as always--stars to the flavors in the panna cotta--and now I know that sitting upstairs was just fine.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Arl2Bern
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Food was terrific and service was too. Seats were not comfortable and ambiance left something to be desired.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Disappointing this time
    loganm
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Have been to Mateo at least a half a dozen times in the past, and have enjoyed it, even recommended it. However, I now think that the quality of the service, the mixed quality of the food prep, and the price point, added up to a less than positive experience. Had one or two nice tapas in the mix, but it couldn't save the overall experience.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Tapas -- well OK
    JohnGault
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    OK - liked the decor. Extremely loud and as we looked around - there's no soundproofing anywhere (leather seating, brick walls, tin ceiling). Food -- definitely order the grilled octopus. WOW!!! Loved it and the sauce is to die for. Server tried to pick up the plate and I almost stuck him with my fork. Asked for bread to use the rest as a dipping sauce. Gazpacho -- yummy. We also had the chicken croquettes (a special) and they were really good. Also ordered the duck -- don't waste your money. Way too salty....... Service was fair. After we had ordered, he really only checked with us once; at which time I also ordered the beet salad. Didn't get that until we were asking for the check - so turned it down. Might give it one more chance.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Always new, consistently good
    kkww
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    We've been to Mateo about five times before DPAC events and it gets better every time. The menu is constantly evolving to satify a wide range of tastes with their innovative small plates. We found an excellent red blend from northeastern Spain at $29 that was a great match for the spicy meatballs. But the real bonus at Mateo is the staff. John was our main waiter and I hope we get to see him next time. I still don't understand how they get all those orders right in that chaotic kitchen and have them delivered by all of those different people....in a hurry! They must be doing something right as many of their folks have been there a long time....rare in the food service business.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • ¡Que rico!
    EmilyVIP
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    The food here, served tapas style, is incredible. We loved everything we tried! My favorited were the croquetas and the gambas... Yum. I can't wait to go back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Mateo Restaurat
    FoodIsGood
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Five of us went here for a late night dinner. We got started around 9:45 and left around midnight. The food was great. Because it's a tapas bar, we ordered around a dozen different dishes that we were able to share. Some of the food was a little edgy - like the crisp pork tail which was the whole pig tail. Everything was delicious, the server was knowledgeable about the food and helpful with the wine (we had a great bottle), and the atmoshphere had a comfortable noise level. We had a great timel.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Fantastic!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Currently at the top of my list of excellent restaurants in the Triangle!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Delicious tapas!
    ViviamE
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    What a nice place! We ordered several tapas: pan con queso, costillas de puerco, tortilla española, rice & duck, pollo frito, calamari and finally budin de pan for dessert. Everything was son YUMMY! My only complain is the tapas portion size - pretty small, good for two people so if your party is bigger you should order more than one serving of each tapa. We also ordered some spanish wine -Viña Alberdi which is very hard to find locally- and it was the perfect complement for a great dinner. My friends, husband and me are looking forward to going back to Mateo soon :)
    Special Features:
    late-night find, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Mateo Durham NC
    kayp
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    I really love he environment of this tapas restaurant, but to be honest, I wish the food flavoring was better. I thought the hype of the place didn't match flavor of things, at least for the dishes I order.
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent!
    Mateo
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    They know their Spanish food, very authentic. Iberico ham is a must try.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always amazing!
    Sbdial
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Great food and drinks, Durham favorite! My husband and I enjoy eating at the bar or inviting friends to share in tasty unique small plates and extensive wine/beer menu.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Thomas
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    We tried several different items, from pork and beef meat balls, to seafood dishes. They were all very good. The staff knew the wine list, and was very helpful with the Spanish wine selection. Great experience!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Lynn
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Absolutely wonderful. The food, service and ambiance "Excellent"
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great, as always
    JFM1965
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Mateo is a gem in Durham. Great food, superb service, and great location downtown.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Super Yummy
    MichelleTanner
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    We really enjoyed Mateo! The food was great, as was the wine. There were some more interesting options (e.g., fried pork skins with chorizo ranch dipping sauce) and more traditional options (e.g., patatas bravas), but interesting or expected, everything was great. Our server was polite and helpful, and I'd go back again in a heartbeat.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great varied food selection
    Foodie42
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Reservations should be made which we did. We arrived early and high top table was ready and proved to be good for conversation. Our group of four included "foodies" and we each selected two items and shared. The perfect amount for us. Our favorite was the "Gambas" (shrimp). We will return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • always good
    MeganAnn
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    I have been to Mateo several times now and it is always excellent. I have a few favorites on the menu and I can not wait to eat there again. The datil are a great way to start and the mata is so enjoyable spread with the pepper jelly on the bread. I think Mateo is well priced for the high quality food they serve. I love to order a few things at a time and they arrive pretty quickly. I took friends to Mateo for the first time this week and they loved it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Wonderful
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    I have enjoyed each time I have been to Mateo so much. The ambience is wonderful and the food is phenomenal.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Love Mateo!
    GotGoals
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    This is hands down my favorite restaurant in the Triangle. In all the times I have been, each dish is something I would be more than happy to order time and again (though they are great about changing their menu items up, keeping it fresh and delicious)! The service is personable yet knowledgeable about what each dish/ingredients are, as well as being able to assist in making appropriate beverage choices to fit the meal. If I could eat their bread pudding for every meal of my life I would die a happy lady. Their Cheerwine sangria is not to be missed! You can't go wrong in choosing to dine at Mateo, it is a great way to round out attending a Downtown Durham activity!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.