I was excited to find Sirena's on TripAdvisor because they have both gnocchi and tiramisu, my Italian favorites. I decided to take 2 of my girlfriends there before a show on a lon anticipated girl's night out. I emailed Sirena's to request a reservation, but never heard back from anyone. I wasn't worried because we were planning an early dinner and there are plenty of good eateries in downtown Norfolk if they could not accomodate us. When we showed up, the maitre d' didn't know anything about my email, but the place was empty so it was no big deal. Luckily we did go early because by the time we left there were few tables available.
The atmosphere is modern and clean. The bathroom is very nice although the full length mirror in front of the commode is a little odd.
Our Rafael, was a nice enough fellow, but his service was lack luster. He read the specials to us, but did emit any enthusiasm; it was very mechanical. Our food was delicious and enjoyed. My special request of gnocchi with puttenesca sauce rather than the menu choice of vitello was accomodated without any problem. The bread prior to the meal is very good - light airy middle with a crunchy slightly chewy crust and served warm. Warm bread earns high points with me. For me, the only thing to make it better would have been to offer whipped butter with it, but the oil/vinegar dipping sauce was tasty. The tiramisu that was so eagerly awaited was somewhat disappointing. At times, I hit something crunchy. Tiramisu should not be crunchy; it should be creamy, like silk. My guess is that the expresso was not fully dissolved before the cake was soaked in it and I was feeling bits of grounds.
During our meal, my friend's tea glass stayed empty far longer than it should have. When we were done with our entrees, it took a very long time for our waiter to return to clear the plates. When we ordered a dessert, he seemed surprised and again it took quite a while (~15 minutes) for our drink refills, coffee and tiramisu to arrive. Getting the dessert dishes cleared and getting the check was another waiting experience.
At $15.00 per plate (or more), additional bread should be included (1st basket is complimentary, more is $2.50). I'm sure running an upscale restaurant with fresh ingredients is not inexpensive, but I think that courtesy and public relations value would exceed the cost of the bread. It makes the restaurant come off as greedy.
I would try Sirena's again, but would have a hard time recommending it when there are other exceptional Italian restaurants in the area.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.