March 8, 2014 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Boasting some of Omaha’s oldest and most popular restaurants, the Old Market has been a popular dining destination for decades. With 40 years under its belt, M’s Pub is definitely on the list for casual diners seeking a night out on the town.

Co-owner Ron Samuelson has operated M’s Pub with business partner Ann Mellen for 27 years. After so much time, it could be easy to take success for granted, but Samuelson continues to try to appeal to his customers by offering quality food at an affordable price.

“The main thing that I hope anybody gets out of a visit here is that they’ve been served something that has been prepared lovingly,” Samuelson says. “We take a lot of care in making sure every dish that goes out of the kitchen has been prepared properly and is a good value.”

20140123_bs_5278

On a recent visit, M’s was in full swing serving casual families, couples on anniversary dinners, and business associates. I ended up sitting at the bar with my dining partner and having a pleasant conversation with a few businessmen about the specials menu. I love sitting at the bar at M’s—it’s usually a more inclusive dining experience.

I started off my meal with the charcuterie special: hand-cured duck and soppressata with warm, fresh bread, red onions, caper berries, and a spicy mustard that really pulled the ingredients together. Samuelson says that M’s is working toward offering hand-cured charcuterie specials on a more regular basis. This special definitely indicates a positive future for the new menu item.

We ordered the fresh whole artichoke appetizer to share. For entrees, my dining partner ordered the gluten-free chicken pesto pasta, and I ordered the lamb burger from the mainstay menu. Although the artichoke was a bit challenging to eat at first, it turned out to be an interesting addition to the evening’s meal—the accompanying lemon aioli and curried mayonnaise were exceptional.

The chicken pesto pasta received a thumbs-up from my dining partner, and the lamb burger was delicious, topped with fresh tomato and lettuce that seemed too good to be true for the winter months.

For dessert, I ordered one of the brand new mini-dessert specials: a salted caramel pudding minus the accompanying toffee bits due to my tree-nut allergy. Although I felt like I was cheating on my favorite sour cream pound cake, this mini dessert was a flawless execution of sweet and salty flavors.

Throughout our meal, the waitress was incredibly accommodating to my dining partner’s gluten intolerance and my allergy. She went the extra mile to help guide us through the extensive menu to create a cohesive dining experience.

Consistency with service is something that has been integral to M’s success in the Old Market and has ensured a full house, even on a cold weeknight. At M’s, no one is shoving you out the door if you just want to stop in for a glass of wine and dessert. When you ask for a suggestion or an honest opinion, you’ll get one without an uncomfortable up-sale.

As a long-time fan of M’s, I was pleased to experience the same sense of consistency and familiarity I was used to, along with a few nice surprises.

More from Omaha Magazine

  • MsPubThe Old Market Business Association Potential business owners often dream of being independent and making their own […]
  • 20140910_bs_9410Persian Diversion If your dining experience at Ahmad’s Persian Cuisine feels less than formal, know that […]
  • Reducing Food WasteReducing Food Waste The night of the Jimmy Buffett concert could not have been more perfect, weather-wise: a […]
  • 20130626_bs_2003Restaurant Review: Indian Oven In the heart of the Old Market on Howard Street, the Indian Oven has been serving its […]
  • 20141121_bs_0058Tokyo Sushi Family is at the heart of everything that Randy Gao does. It was the reason he […]