New Mediterranean restaurant in North End brings modern tapas

Alexa Gagosz, Editor-in-Chief

Richmond Street in the North End has a new address, departing themselves from the traditional italian style neighborhood.

Sfizi, which is the italian term for small or snack-sized dishes, has officially opened, serving Mediterranean-style tapas in a 30-dish deep menu.

The dining room is equipped with a mirrored back-bar, with the entire menu reflecting on the round room of windows facing inward to the room of dim lighting and the intimate atmosphere.

As each table is seated, different types of pitted olives are marinated with olive oil and crushed red pepper are displayed in a round dish to share.

Playing soft instrumental music, bringing a customer’s ears across seas to the traditional sound of the Mediterranean.

Looking over the menu, the dishes could cater to several different types of diets, including vegetarian, while staying inside the $6-$14 price per dish. Tapas included fishes, red and white meats, different forms of bruschetta, and cheese selections.

The staff is small, but knowledgeable on the ingredients and portion sizes of each dish and cocktail on the menu.

The cocktail menu had a wide-range of red and white wines, that originated from countries across Europe. Many were able to buy by the glass, ranging from $8 to $12, but most were able to order by the bottle, with prices ranging up to $2,500. The seven beers that were served were $5 each, but skipped the cheap-tastes of American drafts and kept to the breweries in Italy, Portugal, Greece, Spain, Turkey, and Mexico.

The Efes beer from Turkey had almost a taste comparable to Heineken with a light lager finish.

The Red Sangria was garnished with an orange slice had a peachtree twist and blood orange sweetness from the Skyy vodka that was stirred in.

The Cheese selection had tastes from Italy, Spain, and France with cow, sheep, and goat cheese on a stone cutting board served with a mild pepper marmalade and a slice of bread. The marmalade was an unexpected zesty taste with the mild cheeses and bread, that was a pleasant mix to add a colorful zing to the plate instead of a bland butter or oil that so many other restaurants would have, just to play it safe.

The calamari fritti, from Italy, has a crispy calamari with hot peppers and smoked salt, and slices of the jalapenos and peppers instead of the entire piece, to rid of the seeds, adding a splendid hint of spice. The breading was light, so the taste of the calamari was brought out alongside the lemon wedge to add citrus.

The Blue Point oysters of France were lightly breaded with a soft coating. Two of them are served in each order, on toothpicks over a martini glass.

Although the seafood was excellent, so wasn’t the venison, which was cooked to perfection as it was able to be cut with a butter knife, smothered in a flavorful red wine truffle sauce, a tapa that was only on their specials menu, but should be considered as a staple dish.

The desserts do not have a menu, but all are homemade and include traditional sweet temptations such as crème brûlée and tiramisu. An inner sweet tooth could come out in anyone as one bite of the crème brûlée would have topped as the best style, topped with fruit and the hard caramel gave a fine outer shell to the custard.

Sfizi strides away from the traditional scene of the North End, and brings a fresh twist of different styles and flavors.