After over a year and a half in Charlottesville, I finally went to Mas. Betsy has been there a couple of times. For those who don’t know, Mas is essentially the foodie mecca of Charlottesville (maybe along with C&O), which I think is saying a lot for a town filled with great restaurants. One of the things about Mas is that you can’t make reservations. We got there at 6pm on a Friday and got a seat right away, but a little later in the night there was a long line out front. We got a lot of food and most of it lived up to the hype. The thing that impressed me the most was that for all the hype, the food or the service did not seem pretentious. For instance, the chorizo was just that, a plate with three patties of homemade sausage (I probably would only recommend this dish to accompany a cheese plate). Mas is a true tapas place in the sense that its food is certainly Spanish. Seafood, goat cheese, Manchego cheese, cured pork, and other traditional flavors are prevalent on the menu.
Some of our favorite dishes included breaded halibut with grapefruit, Monte Enebro goat cheese with apricot preserves melted over brioche , and lamb chops with a mint mojo sauce.
I am not sure any restaurant is worth an hour wait, but this is a place that I would like to go back to. I feel like we barely touched the menu. Maybe all of the offerings are what get people coming back.