Mezza Luna

1 Oct 2010
Expensive ($26 and up)
Jones Valley/Hampton Cove
4 out of 5
Melanie’s Take Sunday, Shane and I decided to take a walk on the decadent side and treat ourselves to Mezza Luna. Okay, so we did have a gift certificate that was a use or lose, but we’d heard great things about this place. Although the setting was less then stellar, being nestled in a shopping center between a Hobby Lobby and Dick’s Sporting Goods, the food was great. We dined at lunch, so we opted for the brunch buffet for $17. On this particular day, it included treats like pasta salad with fresh mozzarella, eggs benedict, cheesy polenta, eggplant parmesan, and red velvet cake. One notable feature about the brunch buffet is its variety. Whether you are in the mood for a fresh salad, breakfast, or more traditional lunch options, all your needs can be met by this offering. Eggplant Parmesan So, what was my favorite? Without question, the eggplant parmesan was the clear winner. Everything about this dish, from the marinara to the parmesan, was well done. Other favorites included the spicy shrimp putanesca and the crusty bread with parmesan olive oil. Although most buffets suffer in quality in favor of quantity, this one provided both. Even at $17 a head, Mezza Luna’s Sunday brunch is a must try. The only obvious drawback was the minimal seating indoors. We dined on a rainy Sunday, and the space inside is so poorly dedicated to dining space that it seemed no more than 75 guests could dine at once. Despite this, our 20-minute wait was well worth the reward.

Shane’s Take

I agree with Melanie’s analysis: $17 per person is a lot to put on lunch, but the brunch at Mezza Luna is worth at least one try.¬†Being a brunch buffet, I ate mostly the same foods that Melanie tried, and I thought they all tasted great. Likewise, the atmosphere was nice and modern without being pompous. Particularly, I enjoyed the eggs benedict. The hollandaise had a smooth feel and punchy flavor, the eggs were poached to a nice consistency, and the muffins were extraordinary. Yes, the English muffins were extraordinary. I like English muffins just as much as the next guy, I suppose, but these had an unusually pleasant texture and flavor. As I was eating them, my mind fought itself, constantly switching between an image of the familiar orange packaging of store-bought¬†Thomas English muffins and the thought that these English muffins surely didn’t come from Publix. English muffins would give Pop-Tarts a run for their money if they always tasted this good. I also enjoyed the strawberry shortcake whose shortcake had been replaced with a cake of sweetened yellow polenta. Often, when restaurants serve traditional eats with an unconventional twist, the unconventional twist quickly becomes a tired novelty, but the sweetened polenta shortcake is something I would go back to. Despite being an unusual innovation (at least to my palate), it didn’t forsake the homeliness of traditional shortcake. Wrapping up, here are a few random thoughts on Mezza Luna:
  • Mezza Luna is exceptional eating for Huntsville. We need more places like this.
  • Check out the textured wallpaper on the back wall of the dining room. Nice stuff.
  • I didn’t hear any music when we were there. It would’ve helped the atmosphere, which had a mild sleepy Sunday feeling.
  • The buffet was constantly filled with fresh food. For the money, that sort of service might be expected but isn’t always delivered. I really appreciate the effort.
  • The food was well-presented to have been served on a buffet.
  • As Melanie said, the eggplant parmesan was awesome.
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