Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Finally Eating at the Restaurant Downstairs

Our apartment, two stories above the awning.

The ground floor of our apartment building was a bar/Mexican restaurant when we moved to Bay Ridge in 2007. It was a happy, happy day when it closed. The food was bad and the crowd it attracted was worse. Middle of the night shouting matches underneath our bedroom window were common occurrences.

The space was empty throughout the summer and much of the fall of 2010, before opening that November as a seafood restaurant.

I was curious about this new restaurant, but also hesitant. The restaurant was completely made-over with lovely glass walls and pleasant outdoor seating. Yet I consistently put off dining there.

"We'll go when it gets too hot to walk to a restaurant further away," I'd tell Paul at the beginning of the summer. "We'll go when the snow's too deep to go elsewhere," I'd say in the winter.

We'd had drinks in the bar area with friends, but we hadn't tried the food. Finally, with our move to Ohio looming, it was now or never. So last weekend we finally ate dinner at Mussels and More.

It was a pleasant night -- one of the last ones before the current heat wave -- and we had Edith in a stroller, so we chose the outdoor seating. Our table was approximately 20 feet from the entrance to our apartment building, and vaguely underneath the window to our kitchen.

We purposefully arrived around 9 p.m., when Edith generally goes to sleep. She was zonked out before the entrees arrived. True to the restaurant's name, we ordered mussels (the classic Prince Edward Island kind) and more (grilled octopus, plus zucchini sticks). The dishes we chose were delicious, as was the complimentary bread that started out the meal -- I didn't expect yummy cinnamon-raisin bread.

By meal's end, I was feeling pretty foolish that we hadn't previously eaten at a place both good and convenient. But whether or not we were patrons, I can definitively say that living above Mussels and More has been a surprisingly great experience. The restaurant and bar added a nice hustle and bustle to the street corner, and a pleasant hum of people enjoying a nice meal out. I'm glad that for at least one night, we were part of it.

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