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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Navarro's New Nook

MTLooking down on Navarro's lower level from the upstairs dining room.
Yuri Navarro, the Salvadorean executive chef who introduced Moscow to American Southwestern fusion, has moved on as Santa Fe's head chef to open his own restaurant -- aptly named Navarro's.

Located a short distance from the Santa Fe restaurant, Navarro's is housed in a spacious two-story building. It provides several separate spaces -- a bar plus a larger two-level dining area. If the interior were any brighter and more colorful, diners would have trouble focusing on their meals -- but as it is, it will make for a vibrant retreat on dark winter days.

The bar area offers a separate menu featuring the Tex-Mex classics as well as tapas, while the main dining area offers a more creative selection of modern Latin American and Mediterranean-inspired dishes. Hot starters include fried wild quail with chopped cassava under a red wine and cinnamon sauce (330 rubles) and fried calamari rings with sesame served in a basket with salad and a Mediterranean sauce (280 rubles). Salads include smoked duck and spinach served with quail eggs, tomato, avocado, fried nuts, and blue cheese seasoned with truffles and herbs (390 rubles) and a Mediterranean orzo salad (375 rubles).

Navarro's describes itself as a grill restaurant, and the selection of grilled meats reflects this. There are four varieties of Argentinean beef priced per 100 grams: tenderloin (320 rubles), strip loin (300 rubles), rib-eye (290 rubles) and rump steak (220 rubles). A large mix of all four varieties goes for 1,600 rubles. The T-bone steak is glazed with honey and mole sauce and served with mustard (999 rubles).

The grilled seafood is also impressive, but what merits the most attention is the superb selection of ceviche: tiger shrimp (390 rubles), a mixed assortment (380 rubles) and the sublime halibut (290 rubles). The paella (820 rubles) is loaded with mussels, shrimp, calamari and other seafood, and -- like most things here -- big enough for two diners to share.

There is a good range of beer starting at 119 rubles for one half-liter of Sibirskaya Korona and 1 1/2-liter jugs are available for 349 rubles.

23 Shmitovsky Proyezd, Bldg. 4, 259-3791, 256-1049, 8:30 a.m.-3 a.m., M. Ulitsa 1905 Goda.