Mémé: Mediterranean Sleeper in the West Village

The food buzz has risen to deafening levels in the West Village, where hungry crowds are packing hot spots like RedFarm and Frankies 570 Spuntino. And then there's Mémé, which arrived quietly about a year ago. Blumie says it deserves some buzz of its own.

Not in the mood for a long wait elsewhere, he and his wife wandered in one recent weeknight and were rewarded with "a terrific and reasonably priced meal." You can put together a satisfying spread just from small plates like merguez sausage with hummus; grilled octopus with chickpeas and mesclun-fennel salad; and almond-crusted scallops with cauliflower purée—all "wonderfully flavorful and fresh tasting," Blumie says. On a return visit, a mixed-grill special—merguez, lamb miniburger, and chicken and beef skewers with a salad and hummus—hit the spot. Mémé, owned by two brothers from Morocco, also takes care of the little things, greeting diners with a wonderful amuse-bouche of crostini topped with garlicky white beans, and setting out a basket of excellent bread with olives, olive oil, and pickled vegetables.

The place isn't entirely undiscovered—Blumie says it has attracted "a crowd that clearly was there on purpose"—but Blumie's eager to spread the word further: "we need the hounds to show this place some love."

Mémé [West Village]
581 Hudson Street (at Bank Street), Manhattan
646-692-8450

Discuss: Mémé, wonderful Mediterranean on Hudson St. (at 11th)

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