Unique ExperienceAn meal at Mateo is a truly unique and wonderful culinary experience. They keep bringing unique and delicious preparations one after another. Probably the best dining experience I've ever had.5/16/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat for a groupWe had six at our table and had a great time ordering $300 worth of food/drink. Everything was great and it was lots of fun trying so many dishes.5/15/2013 12:00:00 AMA Durham Top PickHad a great dinner before heading to a show at DPAC.
Service and food was great. This is a Spanish Tapas menu, so unique choices. We selected 5 small plates, wine and a dessert.
The farmers cheese ( made on site) excellent.5/14/2013 12:00:00 AMCausally fabulousThe food is inventive, perfectly done, and the sherry and wine list is very good. You can come dressed, or more causal; the restaurant looks like a nice bar & grill. A find for foodies or anyone who loves great food, and tapas in particular.5/12/2013 12:00:00 AMThe wait staff made it easyThe wait staff made it easy for a first time tapas experience. The quality and variety of dishes was outstanding.5/8/2013 12:00:00 AMOutstanding ...I took my friend from Barcelona to the restaurant for tapas. she was very pleasing surprised the quality selection. A wonderful experience.5/5/2013 12:00:00 AMVery nice place with highVery nice place with high quality food, great service, and enjoyable environment.5/5/2013 12:00:00 AMcatalunyaI am from the Catalan region of Spain and I was quite surprised to find authentic, very tasty food that was on par w/ the best that Catalunya has to offer.5/5/2013 12:00:00 AMDelicious once again!Another fabulous meal at Mateo's. Their Cucumber Gazpacho was wonderful. I hope that it becomes a more regular special!5/3/2013 12:00:00 AMFirst dining experienceGreat food and great atmosphere. Will definitely be going back soon!5/3/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat food, great managerWe were entertaining our of town friends and took them to Mateo. The food there is exceptional!!! We always get a variety and
share so everyone gets bits of everything. All of it was very tasty and beautiful as well.
Our waitress was kind of slow (both speedwise and "intelligence"), but the manager stepped in and made sure things were
made right. All in all, we had a fabulous meal.5/3/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat food, but a bit priceyOverall our experience at Mateo was very good. The food and drinks were delicious and the services was outstanding. Our server did a great job explaining everything to us, as this was the first time we had been to this restaurant. Definitely a great place to meet with a group of people. The only negatives for me is that I felt the prices were a little high and the noise level got to the point where it became a little difficult to hear the people sitting across the table. These certainly aren't deal breakers by any means, but just something to consider when planning a night out. Again, overall it was a great experience.5/3/2013 12:00:00 AMFabulous selection of small platesA friend saw a review of Mateo in the NY Times. When she came to visit, i made reservations. Great move! Fun place...packed on a Thursday night. Do make reservations! Food was great, so was wine. They also have an extensive list of sherries that my friend loved. Try the duck and rice and any of the lentil dishes.....yum!5/2/2013 12:00:00 AMDelicious DiningFour friends and I enjoyed an amazing meal at Mateo before going to DPAC to see Priscilla Queen of the Desert. The food was unbelievably good, the service was impeccable, and we had a wonderful time. I would, and have, recommend experiencing this Durham gem. Between the great company, awesome food, and spectacular show...it was the PERFECT evening.4/30/2013 12:00:00 AMAll of the food was delicious,All of the food was delicious, exactly what I would hope for from a tapas bar, with a southern twist on some of the dishes. Food came out fast and server was very attentive and knowledgeable. We were seated right away when we arrived at our reservation time. We will definitely be going back to try some of the other dishes!4/26/2013 12:00:00 AMOur first time here. GreatOur first time here. Great food and service and we are delighted to have such a unique restaurant near-by.
The only complaint was the noise level--which by 7:30 pm was pretty loud and made conversation difficult.
We will come back but the noise will deter many of our friends.4/25/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat and novel food. BusyGreat and novel food. Busy ambiance. Staff a bit too persistent in moving you through your meal4/23/2013 12:00:00 AMCan't Miss TapasWe love Mateo! Finally after 22 years in Durham we have Spanish cuisine and it's EXCELLENT! We tried the clams, lamb sausage, chicken wings, meatballs, duck, and of course the pan con tomate with manchego...everything delicious, delicious, delicious. The only issue is the noise level is deafening and even though we were only three, it was hard to hear each other's conversations...still the food is superb!4/23/2013 12:00:00 AMPerfecto!Amazing food. Authentic Spanish style tapas. Great options for vegetarians too. The service was great. When they started to get really busy the food and wine came out slower but that's to be expected. The fried manchego and duck egg was to die for as well as the mata and pepper jelly. I highly recommend going here as I will be back too!4/21/2013 12:00:00 AMA great find!We were totally pleased with our Mateo experience. The service and food were all outstanding. The recommendations made by the staff were perfect. Thanks for a wonderful dining experience!4/21/2013 12:00:00 AMVery good food & service, but noisyThe food and service were very good, but the restaurant is very popular (and crowded), the room has a (picturesque) metal ceiling and wood floors and as a result is very noisy. They also play music, which you can't really hear, but I noticed that the loudness of conversation went up and down a bit as the music got louder and softer. My ears were literally ringing when I left. The people at a large table next to us were shouting in order to be heard across the table.4/19/2013 12:00:00 AMA must for foodies!Amazing food but the service can be iffy at times!4/18/2013 12:00:00 AMThe food was fantastic. ServiceThe food was fantastic. Service was good. Like many downtown Durham spots, though, much too loud. So many tables close together, high ceiling make it really hard to hear your dinner companions.4/14/2013 12:00:00 AMJust a very enjoyable experience.Just a very enjoyable experience. Each dish was a little adventure to taste, enjoy and share. Try the sweet tea sangria - despite its name not too sweet, but delicious.
Have recommended to several people already. Great evening we spent there! My daughter gave me a high-five for making the choice to eat there as we were leaving.4/14/2013 12:00:00 AMDefinitely met and exceededDefinitely met and exceeded all expectations. I can't believe that I waited so long to go.4/13/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat food and a great placeGreat food and a great place to meet with friends and enjoy a fun night out. New menu, (though still plenty of the old standbys including my favorite the octopus carpaccio. this is a must try restaurant.4/11/2013 12:00:00 AMWe will definitely go backEnjoyed our meal, food was very tasty, the creative combinations were delightful. The only complaint we had was the bar service was a little slow.4/6/2013 12:00:00 AMIf only I could have eaten more!We loved (!!!) Mateo. Absolutely everything we ordered was delicious and the service was quick, even on a busy night. I wish I could have sampled more food but I stuffed myself silly! We'll just have to go back (again and again). Loved it!!4/4/2013 12:00:00 AMMemorable Spanish saborI fell in love with Durham thanks in part to places like this! I had a garlic soup that is one of the best dishes I've had in a long time. Patatas bravas were great, as well as the burger for lunch... But the wine, oh, the wine. Can't wait to go back!4/4/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat food and willing toGreat food and willing to modify dishes for vegetarians. Lively but not too loud for conversation.4/4/2013 12:00:00 AMWe had tapas for lunch here.We had tapas for lunch here. The dishes are very flavorful; the garlic soup is a do-not-miss. The service is very good. Empty plates are cleared promptly. This is a real Durham gem.4/3/2013 12:00:00 AMthis was our first time atthis was our first time at Mateo's and we have been back 4 times SINCE this March visit. kind of place where you want to taste EVERYTHING on the menu. perfect place for lo carb/no carb dining - tons of choices! At last visit our daughter ordered churros for dessert and said they were JUST like being in Madrid.3/31/2013 12:00:00 AMAbolutely delicious!!The Food, as usual, was absolutely delicious. Since my first visit to Mateo the week it opened last summer, it has been my favorite spot to dine in Durham. I have not been disappointed yet, and i have been many times.3/30/2013 12:00:00 AMOverall we had a good firstOverall we had a good first experience at Mateo highlighted by excellent service from the wait staff. Only reason I did not rate "outstsnding" is the noise level is a bit high due to barren high ceilings and walls and our last tapas plate took over 25 minutes to arrive.3/29/2013 12:00:00 AMA favorite mid-range dinner spot!Love this little Tapas bar for the authentic feel, great food, and spectacular decor. The staff are really friendlyl and offer great suggestions for the myriad of menu options. We were recently made to wait 30 minutes or so after making a reservation, but the staff made it right by having some snacks ready for us on the table and being very apologetic for the inconvenience. I'll definitely be back often!3/29/2013 12:00:00 AMMatteo's is a great meet up spot!Et at Mateo's w 4 friends. We had a wonderful time. Attentive but not intrusive service, great food and nice Spamish wines. Would recommend as a fun spot for social gatherings. We all shared our all plates so we taste many dishes. They were all good!3/28/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat Spanish tapas with aGreat Spanish tapas with a southern flare. We are so excited about having this new restaurant in Durham!3/23/2013 12:00:00 AMWe had an early 6:30 pm reservastioWe had an early 6:30 pm reservastion Mateo before a concert on Saturday night. It was bustling with a line out the door. Our waitress Karen was excellent and served us efficiently with drinks, apps and a series of tapas. When i ordered a wine she didn't know, she consulted her wine notes and gave a good guidance. It turned out to be right on target for our meal. Mateo is crowded and noisy, with high pressed tin ceilings and a full house. But that is part of the atmosphere. If you don't want a lively crowd, choose somewhere else. Overall, excellent and we will go back.3/23/2013 12:00:00 AMMy favorite dinner spot in DurhamMateo's bar de tapas is one of my favorite new spots in Durham. The tapas are delicious, with with unique ingredients and combinations, and the wine selection is superb. With a casual atmosphere that also works well for a romantic night out, Mateo's is the place to be!3/22/2013 12:00:00 AMWe tried many things on theWe tried many things on the menu. Most of them were tasty, but only a couple bowled us over (a dish with figs, another with sweetbreads). The calamari was below standard. We had to order two ham plates (table of 5) to make sure everyone had enough to eat. Excellent wine list. Great service.
Overall, I would say it's a fun place to try but that the issue is that tapas aren't intended as dinner and to get enough to eat will cost you an arm and a leg. Perhaps the best way to enjoy Mateo, is to stop by at the bar for a glass of wine and a few tapas before eating at a restaurant that serves meals. The cost of our dinner was almost $60 each--with wine--and I can assure you that eating at a tapas bar in Spain is much cheaper--tastier too3/22/2013 12:00:00 AMAmazing food! AtmosphereAmazing food! Atmosphere great- cool décor. Service was fairly good although dessert took a long time and we had told the waiter we needed to be at a show at DPAC at 8. Other than that small issue, I would highly recommend Mateo!3/22/2013 12:00:00 AMFantastic Foodie HeavenAfter starting with the cheeses and fresh sardines, we set the regular menu aside and focused solely on the Specials of the day. The Duck leg with creamed kale took my dinner partner and I back through so many memories of comfort food growing up.... think Thanksgiving....the depth of flavor kept us savoring ever single bite. The Bone Marrow with short ribs was not only presented beautifully, but the fit melted in your mouth . I wish I could upload a photo... because words cannot begin to fully describe this dish. we ended with the brussell sprout salad... which was so bright and clean, a perfect end to the meal. Oh- but then the Fig bread pudding! Magnificent experience...that I cannot wait to enjoy again.3/22/2013 12:00:00 AMExcellent food, great service.Excellent food, great service. Our group of 4 ordered 12 plates, and they were all wonderful.3/20/2013 12:00:00 AMDelicious and creative smallDelicious and creative small plates. This Chef is very talented and made extremely creative and interesting taste combinations!3/19/2013 12:00:00 AMWe really enjoyed our meal.We really enjoyed our meal. The fried egg was outstanding!3/17/2013 12:00:00 AMI have been trying to getI have been trying to get to Mateo's for some time. The wait was worth it. The food was unique and very enjoyable. Wonderful Wonderful Wonderful! Everyone in my party loved it! I can hardly wait for a return trip.3/13/2013 12:00:00 AMGreat food and service, butGreat food and service, but the drinks were a bit on the pricey end. The group I visited with had been to Spain and we thought the food was authentic with a twist. It was a great visit and I plan on visiting again!!3/12/2013 12:00:00 AMThe food was exceptional butThe food was exceptional but I do not care for the whole "tapas" experience. Unless you have dined at the restaurant several times you really are clueless about what to order. You have no guarantee that the food will come in any sensible culinary order and you have no guarantee that flavors compliment each other. The tapas experience is for diners who really want to drink and shmooze with the food as a secondary issue. I had sweetbreads and my wife had shrimp but the roasted potatoes had a tomato sauce which clashed with our main courses. The potatoes arrived before the other dishes which made "tapas" sense but not traditional dining sense. I would go back if the menu were reorganized but I am probably in the minority.2/24/2013 12:00:00 AMFabulous tapas menu. I lovedFabulous tapas menu. I loved the ham sampler and the ribs. The churros dipped in chocolate gave me very sweet dreams last night!!2/19/2013 12:00:00 AM