We didn't know what to expect. Here is this little restaurant, with maybe 12 tables and a bar on the main floor, behind a parking garage. But it looked pretty intimate and that's what we were looking for. So, we cancelled reservations at another Frederick Italian, one on a more prominent street, and booked Mistero (Italian for Mystery I guess).
Wow. What a great decision.
We were first greeted by Ken, the manager. He seated us, engaged in some brief, albeit friendly conversation and went about his business. He didn't hover, but his eye was everywhere in that place and it ran like a Swiss watch.
We ordered a 2011 Kenwood Pinot Noir and an appetizer of Bruschetta with marinated tomatoes with a balsamic glaze. We brought some of it back to Indianapolis with us. It was not only palate pleasing, but eye pleasing as well. It was the first of several perfect dinner moments.
For dinner, I reluctantly turned away the special that night of salmon with a raspberry glaze and opted for the Fettuccine Giotto (egg noodle/char grilled chicken/fresh broccoli with a parmesan alfredo sauce.
Probably the best Italian meal I've had in at least five or six years.
Everything was perfect. The chicken was expertly seared. The broccoli was tender and lit up the dish. The sauce obviously wasn't born of a jar. I was very sorry I was getting full about 3/4 of the way through. My goodness it was absolutely delicious.
My wife opted for the spaghetti meatball (spaghetti noodle/ tomato sauce/ Italian meatballs).
She's not a very big person, but....she ate it all and eyed the droplets of marinara left on the plate when she was finished.
We really aren't beef/pork eaters, so the meatballs (2) were in a separate dish. I at least tried them (ate half of one) and thought seriously about becoming more of a carnivore.
The service? Spot on. One time Debra looked around the corner for our server (who was in the kitchen) and another one was there in a moment asking if she needed something.
As we were fawning over the chef, our server told us it was her husband...and she brought him to the table.
I gave him a standing "O".
This is a well run, well orchestrated restaurant. The food is excellent. The people are friendly and engaging, but on a mission to serve well and make you happy.
We'll be returning to Frederick one day and the first thing we'll be doing is making reservations at Mistero. If we lived close (we live in Indianapolis) we'd be there once a week.
Congrats to them. Outstanding.
If you own or manage Mistero Bar And Italian grille, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.