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“Pretending to be something it is not”
Review of Mirabelle - CLOSED

Mirabelle
Price range: $30 - $50
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Local cuisine, Special occasions
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast, Reservations
Description: FIRST & OAK is located in the charming Mirabelle Inn boutique hotel. A culinary dream team of passionate individuals that defy to bring innovation and creativity to your plate. Our mission is to source local fare with our primary emphasis on quality and seasonality. It's elegant ambiance is the perfect setting for couples, small groups, intimate private dining, birthdays, wedding dinners, business meetings, and wine tastings. Executive Chef Steven Snook
Reviewed July 11, 2011

Went here based on the fact that it was rated nr.1 restaurant in Solvang. When we entered the place we could smell a frighting smell, the building is obviously having problem with water damage.

Anyhow, we got the menu and the starters seemed quite interesting.  We decided to go for a crab meat salad and a lobster quesidellia.

The crab meat salad was in our view three different flavours that did not work together. The whole thing looked amazing when they served it, so we kind of suspect that the focus was on the look. The lobster quesedilla was decent enough, although they managed to make a tasteless salsa and guacamole.

For the main course we had a seabass and a steak filet. The seabass itself was well prepared but the rest was just a chaos of different tastes. The steak filet was the poorest piece of meat we have had in the States. It was a small piece, we ordered it medium, but came back with not even a hint of red colour. The meat was far from tender.

We were so disappointed that we decided to drop dessert. All in all we got the impression that the place has the ambitions, but basically do not have the capabiltity to deliver. The most annoying part is the fact they price the food like a Michelin star restaurant but struggle to deliver something half decent.

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3  Thank TAtonull
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mirabelleinn, Owner at Mirabelle, responded to this reviewResponded July 13, 2011

It is shocking to see a review such as this and I am very sorry this guest did not let us know immediately of his/her disappointment. As seen from many previous reviews, guests love our food preparations and our certified Master Chef, trained in Europe, has many years of experience working with fresh local products.
I have been trying to justify this guests comments, as we take all of them seriously and I can only imagine that he/she is used to more traditional Northern European food and therefore did not like some of our more interesting combinations. We have local guests who eat here weekly and even daily, obvioulsy because they love the food and the ambiance. One of the comments we hear a lot is " the best filet I've ever had" and "the crabcake is to die for"! Our main courses are priced from $19 - $32, lower than most upscale restaurants in this area and definitely nowhere near prices of a Michelin star restaurant.
We have no water damamge, I don't understand why this guests would not comment or leave if something smelled badly???? I would!
Again, I am so sorry he/she did not give us the opportunity to make them another satisfied and happily returning guest. In the meantime, we are grateful for any comments that help us improve and certainly for all the wonderful comments from our many happy guests. Thank you, Brigitte

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (144)
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114 - 118 of 144 reviews

Reviewed June 28, 2011

We enjoyed our evening at MIrabelle's. Service was very good and the food was thoughtfully prepared. Street parking was readily available.

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Thank BowieBill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 19, 2011

Overall, it wasn't necessarily a bad meal, it just wasn't all that memorable either. The duck was delicious, but the crab felt like it was mixed with miracle whip for the sauce. The selection of wine was good, but lacking enough local santa barbera choices for being right in the heart of it all.
Service was terribly slow (and the place wasn't that busy either). maybe I was just expecting too much considering this was ranked #1 on trip advisor for solvang.
Ok, but wouldn't recommend it.

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1  Thank Butt0r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mirabelleinn, Owner at Mirabelle, responded to this reviewResponded June 26, 2011

Thanks to all our guests for their wonderful responses. We are sorry that this guest could not agree with many previous guests. In response I would like to mention that we use fresh Dungeness Crab, we would never use miracle whip in any of our dishes, in fact there is not even real mayonaise in the crab. We have exactly 100 local wines on our list, which would seem more than adequate for a restaurant with 26 seats. We also pride ourselves on an older collection of Napa and Sonoma wines that are rarities and were collected by the owner before the local area received its reputation for good wines. We are awarded the Wine Spectator "Award of Excellence" every year.
We emphasize fine dining in our restaurant. Most guests come here for a relaxed meal, enjoying an aperetif and an amuse bouche before the menu presentation and given enough time to enjoy different wines with different courses. Of course, when guests let us know that they are in a hurry or going to an event, we are happy to speed up the process. I wish this guest would have let us know of their preference or that they didn't enjoy the crab, we are always happy to go out of our way to please our guests.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 7, 2011

We were staying at Mirabelle inn for our 1st anniversary and had our anniversary dinner at Mirabelle restaurant.

This is the best place to eat in Solvang or I'd rather say any place in California.
The chef is of German origin and cooks delicious dishes with wonderful combination of sauces, it is unbelievably tasty! reminds me of Ratatouille movie. :-)
Lobster raviolli was delicious and so was the seabass. The creme brule had 3 different combinations - common, chocolate, rasberry creme brules in 1 order!!!
The ambience of the restaurant is very charming and cozy.
No wonder that you need to make reservations in advance to eat in this restaurant :-)

For members staying at the INN, they serve continental breakfast which is different every day. I'll again mention of the sauces (in this case freshly made rasberry sauce was delicious)

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1  Thank amkibu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 10, 2011

The beaten path in Solvang can often mean negotiating sidewalks crowded with tourists gawking in the windows of the many 'gift' shops. Slightly off the beaten path is the respite of the Mirabelle Restaurant and Inn. When you enter the Inn and Restaurant, you experience of bit of classic Europe that is at once warm and inviting. You are always immediately greeted by the owner herself, or one of the friendly people at the front desk of the Inn, who can help you should she be busy with other guests. The lighting always strikes me first...perfect - whether you arrive early evening (with daylight still hanging around) or later at night, when they have on all the twinkle lights. There is indoor and outdoor seating, tables set with linen and sweet floral arrangements. The menu always reflects chef Norbert's dedication to the freshest ingredients, which he uses in the most creative way. I recommend any of the fish dishes. I did treat myself to the lamb for Easter and loved the way the chef wrapped the tender loin in the thinnest bacon for just enough flavor and crunch. Also a treat to have the chef come out and say hello to all that diners that evening. The wine list is always interesting and has jewels from CA, as well as Europe. Even when you dine alone and are limited to wines by the glass, you can be sure that what is open is not just "house wine" quality. I work in a nearby town and always send our guests to this restaurant and I always look forward to the chance of dining there myself.

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1  Thank Michele0122
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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