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“Give this Osteria a try!!!!!”
Review of Mani Osteria

Mani Osteria
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Ranked #1 of 600 Restaurants in Ann Arbor
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $31 - $50
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: ANN ARBOR
Reviewed August 24, 2013

Fantastic osteria, food great, drinks great and very knowledgeable server Sara, who knew everything about the menu and the beverages and since it was our first visit she made great suggestions and painted a good picture of what we might order. We also had a member of our party with a significant allergy so she helped us understand what he could safely consume. It was a Saturday night and every spot in this large establishment was full. We had reservations so we were seated promptly.
The cocktails were unique and very tasty. The non alcoholic strawberry mint lemonade was refreshingly light. We tried several antipasti including the garbanzo bean salad which was tasty with a hint of spice, the crab gazpacho with fresh tomato flavor was tasted by several of us and that along with the pork belly and apricot marmalade were my personal favorites. The mussels, garlicky, large morsels with broth so tasty it was sopped up with their crusty bread were A+ also.
We ordered 3 salads amongst us. The arugula with mushroom, the fig and prosciutto and the caesar. They were all fresh, large portions, the caesar in particular had an unusual preparation in that the egg that is usually raw and mixed into the dressing came soft boiled and rolled in a light crumb that crowned the salad and just begged the diner to gently cut into it so the soft warm yolk and white could be mixed as little or as much into the salad and dressing as the diner desired. This preparation takes away the "stigma" of the raw egg approach which some diners object to.
Two couples at our table ordered different pasta entrees and the other couple ordered one of the pizzas. The pasta was hand made, which is a rarity and both the dish that was veal broth based and the linguini with tender bay scallops were thoroughly enjoyed. The wood fired thin crust pizza with garlic spinach and burrata cheese drizzled with an aged balsamic was the surprise in that you couldn't eat just one............slice that is!
Coffee, espresso and desserts were offered and just because we were full does NOT mean we passed. Espresso was brewed well, the Affogato was creamy, cold, ice cream with a piping hot espresso poured over and it was delicious and partly responsible for the time of this review. The one item we feel should be removed from the menu was the triple mini cannoli's. We wanted to like them but just couldn't. The flavors of all three were off point. Despite that everything else, including Sara's expert service, was outstanding and we will definitely return.

Thank shmtw2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (447)
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371 - 375 of 447 reviews

Reviewed August 13, 2013

The most over used word in the restaurant biz these days has to be 'fusion'. I'm not sure how the word relates to my taste buds, but this place made mine happy. Great pizza, started off with cooked (fried?) olives - yummy!- and refreshing spinach salad on a warm summers night. Sitting outside enjoying the street scene of the always entertaining AA put a special spin on dinner. Fair priced too.

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Thank dgguido
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2013

If subsequent visits are as positive as the two so far, I would give Mani an Excellent rating. I was there in April for dinner and on July 18 for lunch. Let's address the charge that Mani is pricey. This is nonsense. This is a real restaurant, not a pizza joint. The cost is reasonable and consistent with quality. On my first visit, I had pizza and expected to be as disappointed as I usually am at pizza in the U.S. Not this time. The dough had a "flavor" I have only experienced at the best pizza places in Rome. It is a perfect size to split as an appetizer for two. The pasta was also very good. At lunch, it was 97 degrees outside and we wanted to eat light. Splitting the sensational fried squash flowers and a salade Nicoise made a lot of sense and we were impressed with the inventive take on the salad. Considering the crowd at dinner, I thought the noise level was acceptable. The service was polished both times with no preciousness. This is a distinctive restaurant and I wish it well.

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Thank CardinalePrimo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2013

My wife and I are pretty good cooks and it takes a lot to impress us, but everything we ate here did exactly that. The squash blossoms stuffed with seafood were our favorite - the batter was so thin and delicate it was just amazing. The meatballs were almost as good, spicy and slightly rare instead of the usual overcooked meatballs you find so many other places. The Spicy Italian pizza was a great combination of flavors. My only criticism would be that the edges of the crust were the slightest bit undercooked. And finally the Garganelli pasta - it was so good it will be hard not to order this every time we eat here. Another surprise was the 'house' Chianti, which was quite good.

This is not an inexpensive place to eat, but I was pleasantly surprised that the entire meal came to just over $80 including the wine. We will eat here again.

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Thank Bill C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2013

Three of us ate here while visiting Ann Arbor on the recommendation of our B&B hosts. Great choice! We arrived around 5:30 on a Saturday evening in July and were seated right away even though the restaurant was mostly full. A half hour later the place was jam packed with a waiting crowd.

We started with three appetizers. The chilled spring pea soup was absolutely delicious and very fresh. Also enjoyed the arancini (perfectly cooked with quality ingredients), and lightly battered and fried squash blossom special appetizer (declared very good and somewhat exotic by the dining companion who devoured it). We then shared two quite delicious, perfectly cooked super-thin pizzas -- Margherita and Burrata & Balsamic. The star was the latter -- the garlic spinach, balsamic onions and chunks of creamy burrata together on that bubbly crust were heavenly. Margherita had a very good sauce and was quite yummy, too. Then we shared an order of handmade, fresh Cappelletti pasta filled with eggplant, broccolini and sage cream -- holy cow was that stuff to die for! Our teenager declared it the best pasta she'd ever eaten. It really was that good. We topped it off with a shared bowl of homemade lemon and raspberry gelato which was very creamy and flavorful, a generous portion and the perfect ending.

The service was absolutely outstanding. Server was very knowledgeable and made great recommendations. Food and drinks came quickly, plates cleared in timely fashion. Water glassed continuously filled. Many employees all working in harmony for each piece of service. Loved the vibrant atmosphere and many types of seating options. We were at a table on the upper level near the open kitchen and loved it.

Overall, highly recommend. Will definitely go back next time in Ann Arbor.

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Thank glacierqueen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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