If you live in the south Slope you should be happy about Futura. It offers a pleasant mix of good food and attractive prices in a relaxed yet sophisticated atmosphere.
Last Friday I was part of a group of 4 (three CH posters and one fellow traveler) making a first visit to the restaurant. Futura is Argentinean that means a combination of grilled meats and Italian dishes that reflect Argentinas substantial Italian population.
We started with empanadas, nicely executed but just a touch bland. (Maybe Ive been eating too much Szechuan food lately.) At any rate Id certainly order them again. My partner had the seafood skewers (shrimp, calamari, and scallops) and she liked them very much. Gently cooked and juicy.
Two of our party split the Argentine mixed grill (aka parrillada) which consists of short ribs, skirt steak, sweet breads, and pork and black sausage. Both were very happy with the dish. My friends wife had the risotto which seemed to please her as well.
I had the grilled ribeye and was glad I did. I believe it was marinated but Im not entirely sure of that. At any rate it was tender and delicious. A number of the main courses come with carrot infused mashed potatoes as a side dish. Im not a fan of this although you might like it fine. With each mouthful I kept thinking this would be really good if only the carrot wasnt there.
We finished by splitting an unusual chocolate semifreddo which had a pepper component which kicked in about 15 seconds after each swallow. Maybe I could learn to like this but Im not sure. The opinion of my companions was divided as well.
The portions were substantial without being overwhelming and the prices were certainly fair. The parrillada for 2 was $32 and my steak was $21. There are a number of other mains in the $12 $19 range so cost shouldnt be an issue.
The owner was on hand and he made us feel very welcome throughout the meal. While we were making our way through the wine list he suggested an Argentinean Malbec which was outstanding. At $28 it was one of the cheaper wines on the list. Imagine that an owner who doesnt try to upsell!
The room itself is stylish in an almost glossy way. I had looked at the pictures on Futuras website with a jaundiced eye. Im sure weve all been taken in by attractive photographs only to find the reality to be disappointing. In this case however the space was every bit as nice as the pictures.
They have both a back yard and a roof deck. I am really looking forward to coming back during warmer weather. (See the picture below.)
Futura is at 287 9th Street about halfway down the block from 5th Avenue. This is the type of place that South Slopers have been waiting for.
(A special thanks to Steve R. for suggesting the restaurant.)