My wife and I have eaten at Mirko on a few occasions, most recently with a large group of friends (8 of us, in all). We typically enjoy the experiences, but there's always something that sours the experience. This last visit was a 50/50 of the good and the bad typically the balance is closer to 85/15, respectively.
We tried to call for reservations, but were told they only take reservations for 10 or more, and there's no call-ahead seating. This place is tiny, so the no reservations is a major surprise.
We arrived a half hour before our party to put our name in, and it still took them 50 minutes to seat us. Most people won't stick around for that long with all the other options in the area, so I assume they'll change their reservation policy once the 'new place' crowd dwindles.
Once seated, things started smoothly. Drinks served, orders taken, appetizers delivered, and pasta explained. The appetizers seem to always be well done. My wife and I love the Caprese salad, which is a simple dish of roma tomato slices, topped with basil and fresh mozzarella with a splash of fresh olive oil. Its always great! Someone else got the mussels as an app, and all who tried said they were quite good. Though, there were a couple that didn't open that were on the plate. A more scrupulous place would pick them out.
The meal is where things turned. 7 of 8 of us were served, but one dish was forgotten. However, NO ONE came over to apologize/acknowledge the mistake for a good 5 minutes. That's no exaggeration either. It was noticed by the server, but our waitress never came over to apologize until the manager came over and gave the guest who's dish was overlooked some complimentary soup to hold him over (which he didn't even like/want). They didn't even comp his meal. Worst of all, all our meals were cold as we didn't want to be rude and start before he was served. Terrible handling of the situation by the staff. Once we started digging in, I found some of my pasta to be, um, super al dente (read: hard to chew), though the taste was OK. Another diner was missing the mozzarella in her dish, and another said their dish didn't taste all too great.
After we finished, as we were wrapping up, without asking us, they said they were giving us a complimentary dessert for our troubles. Nice gesture, but NONE of us wanted the dessert because we had plans to go elsewhere for dessert. Just comp the original missed meal or take 10% off all our checks. That's the best remedy for the situation. Not forcing food on us that we don't want.
Again, we've had better experiences there, but as I said, you shouldn't expect a great dining experience. Why such the high score you ask? The value is good. Prices are reasonable for fresh made pasta, and when things are prepared well, they taste very good. Its just that this isn't always the case. We will most likely go again, but if the consistency doesn't improve, I fear Mirko will fall off our consideration lists.
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