Best Tapas/Small Plates - 2012
A year and a half after relocating to the Central West End, Gerard Craft and Adam Altnether's Taste has hit its stride, with head chef Matt "Mateo" Daughaday serving small plates that pack bright ideas and big flavor. For proof you need only try his "Barbacoa" dish. A playful take on traditional street tacos, it consists of three tiny masa cakes topped with luscious braised beef cheek, pickled red onion, cilantro, queso fresco and salsa verde. Nothing is overthought. Steamed Manila clams come in a white-wine broth that needs nothing more than the spark of Thai chiles. If you feel a moment's sadness at how quickly each dish vanishes from the plate, you can take comfort that you still have room for another, and another.