MEZZA MEDITERRANEAN - WESTWOOD, NJ
(PHOTO PROVIDED VIA GOOGLE)
Mezza has been a restaurant that I have known about for a long time. It is located just blocks from where I live in the heart of Westwood New Jersey near another nearby restaurant that I frequently visit called Baci. The wife and I have never visited Mezza until we decided to go for lunch today (our visit was on Monday 3/26/2018). I have been wanting to try Mezza for a long time but I always felt that I wanted to be able to go with my wife and not try it on my own like I do with most places. If only we knew what we had just blocks from the house. Westwood has a great food scene and I must say that I was not really surprised with how I felt about Mezza.
(IMAGES ABOVE PROVIDED VIA GOOGLE)
We walked into a beautiful restaurant which you can see pictured above. I loved how the restaurant relied on natural light from outside. They did not need to have all of their lights on during the day. It helped to set a good mood and tone for lunch. They had a decent crowd for 1pm on a Monday in Westwood. We felt very comfortable there and that is because of the warm greeting that we had upon arrival from one of the servers. We had a great first impression.
My wife began her meal with a delicious Cream of Corn soup. I was able to taste it. It was not overly creamy and it had a great balance of flavor from the corn. It was not overpowering at all and seemed light for a cream soup. It was simply delightful.
The salad that came with my meal was super refreshing. It had romaine lettuce with diced tomatoes, cucumber and red onion. I'm not sure exactly what the dressing was but it had a wonderful hint of mint and cilantro. I'm actually not sure if they were in the dressing or in the salad itself, but it was tasty. I am a fan of both flavors. Some can see that both flavors can be overpowering, but the chefs at Mezza did a nice job to combine the flavors nicely.
On to our main course. My wife had the Falafel Pita. The falafel was accompanied with hummus, Israeli salad, and tahini. My wife had them add feta cheese for a nice extra touch. She loved this pita. The fresh ingredients were exactly what she was looking for. This is a definite must if you are looking for a falafel dish.
I had one of their lunch specials today. I had the Sauteed Branzino. It featured tomato, spinach, capers, olives, fingerling potatoes, sherry wine and lemon. My favorite part of this dish was the crispy skin of the fish. The texture went nicely with the tenderness of the fish. Make sure to have a little bit of everything in one bite as the combination of the flavors is pure excitement for the mouth. Also feel free to ask for a basket of pita because the sauce is just too good to not soak with pita. I cleaned my plate dry. This was an amazing dish.
Everyone was friendly and accommodating. Our server was very talkative (in a good way) and held nice conversation about the meal. He seemed to really enjoy what he did and gave the impression that he truly wanted to please us. At one point he brought over the green sauce that you see above. It is called Schug and has a pretty strong amount of heat to it. It has jalapenos, parsley, cilantro, garlic, salt and oil in it (I might have missed a few ingredients. That's what they told me was in it). I did not ask for it, he just figured I would like it based on our conversation. He also gave me another basket of pita and suggested that I mix it with the hummus (60% hummus, 40% schug). It was amazing. I can see myself snacking on this at home. In my opinion a great server who loves what they do will go out of their way to form a great connection with the guest. He did this today. I look forward to asking for him the next time I dine at Mezza.
I feel like a fool that I have not dined with Mezza until today. I have lived in the area for years and I had never given it a shot. I wish I had as I feel that I have been missing out on their great menu all of this time. I look forward to visiting Mezza again soon for another great experience. I give Mezza a strong 4.5 out of 5 stars. Great job with today's service. We will look to visit you next during the dinner hours to enjoy the extended dinner menu. Keep in mind, they are a BYOB. So make sure to bring your own bottle. Enjoy!
Mezza is located:
20 Jefferson Avenue
Westwood, NJ 07675
PHONE: (201) 722-8822
Open 7 days
Lunch: 11:30AM – 3:00PM Saturday: 11:30AM – 2:30PM Dinner: 5:00PM – 9:00PM Wednesday & Thursday: 5:00PM – 9:30PM Friday & Saturday: 5:00PM – 10:00PM
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