Meat. Six courses. Let’s do this.
Match is easily one of, if not my favorite restaurant in SoNo. So how is it that I have never written a review? Quite simply, I have not accumulated enough visits for a full write-up, and a few times I took photos but I had big time issues like not bringing my camera or my photos just not coming out to my standards.
But my day would come on the 14th anniversary of Chef Matt Storch’s restaurant in the form of two special tasting menus; one for fish and veggies, the other for meat. For me, and I am sure every Match fan would attest to this, it was a real treat to sample many great dishes for just $35 per person that took place from October 8-11. Each menu was six courses including dessert and consisted of Match’s most popular dishes and sought after specials.
|A Two Roads Double IPA seemed right. Because meat and beer.|
If you pay attention, you know without a doubt I went “meat menu” all the way. I am red meat and pork fat to my core and it gave me the opportunity to try some of Chef Storch’s dishes that I salivated over many times even while making decisions I was happy with. If I ordered steak, I wanted the burger. If I ordered the burger, I wanted steak. You feel me? Come to think of it, I am just greedy when it comes to meat.
Rant = Over. I swear. Now onto meats we go!
|Would have taken home the whole pot.|
The tasting started out with an occasional Match special, Meatballs. The Meatballs are a beef, veal, and pork blend with ricotta cheese that had great flavor and tenderness. The tomato sauce was so simple, but had nice hints of garlic and basil. THANK YOU for that piece of bread to mop up the sauce.
|Bacon! If you dig spicy, this is the way to go.|
Next up was an appetizer I sampled at Chef Storch’s demo at the Blues, Views & BBQ Festival, Spicy Bacon and Mozzarella. I already knew what to expect, sort of. The bacon is cooked and comes out with a perfect crispy to fatty ratio that all bacon lovers will appreciate. The kicker, and my favorite part, is the sweet but spicy sauce and the cooling effect you get when you scoop up some of the fresh mozzarella.
The tasting menu’s midpoint was in the form of a Fork & Knife Caesar accompanied by marinated tomato bruschetta. This was one of the menu items I wanted to try for a while and glad I got the chance. This may shock some of you, but I like a good salad, and I like it more when the dressing is homemade and creamy. Kudos to Match for this. The bruschetta on the side gave a good contrast to the salad with its acidity.
|As I’m posting, this is what I crave. A giant bowl would be nice.|
After the salad came something that I will most likely order on my next visit to Match, Gnocchi tossed with “8 Hour” Osso Bucco. The ricotta gnocchi paired with the veal shank served in its “falling apart” tender stage and rich braising liquid is a popular dish at the restaurant and I could have eaten, or tried damn hard to eat the entire stock of it for that night’s service.
|Possibly my favorite Match dish. Aw, hell, I like them all.|
With fullness setting in after the gnocchi, I had one more savory dish to tackle before dessert and it was familiar to me, Steak Frites. This Match staple that Chef Storch calls, “Me on a plate,” is a dry-aged sirloin (cooked perfectly as always), with balsamic onions, garlic butter, creamed spinach, and fries you could eat until you drop. If steak is your deal, this is one in our area you DO NOT want to miss.
|A perfect ending|
The only way to cap off a meaty meal is with something sweet, something chocolaty and then out came the Hot Chocolate “Soufflé” Cake that is so gooey when you cut into it with fresh raspberries and raspberry sauce, a dollop of homemade whipped cream and Tahitian vanilla gelato.
The six courses for Match’s anniversary was one heck of a way to highlight many of its strong plates and an even better way for diners to experience this SoNo hot spot that will impress anyone you decide to bring along. I certainly hope for future tastings even without the special occasion. But…if you are looking for a special night at Match, every Thursday is my personal favorite because they host Burger Night! The Match Burger is high quality ground beef from Grayledge Farms in Roxbury, CT (order it medium rare!), onion brioche, bacon, and balsamic onions. And if you’re wondering about cheese, well the burger is dipped in a homemade cheese sauce and some is also put on during burger assembly. Trust me on this one and just go, but if you miss it on Thursday, it is offered on Friday as a special.
Burger interruption = Over.
When my meal was complete I stopped by the kitchen to thank Chef Storch for a wonderful meal and a “job well done.” It was busy so I didn’t linger long and I forgot to say, “Congratulations! Keep it going for another 14 and don’t stop there.”
98 Washington Street
South Norwalk, CT 06854