Cafe Mangia is a gem in Colchester. The restaurant is small, so I suggest making a reservation. We had to wait a few minutes for our table. Staff greeted us warmly and offered us a drink while we waited. We were sat in no time. Our waitress was very accommodating. I was with a friend who I hadn't seen in a while, so we were slow to order. The waitress didn't pressure or hound us a bit. I appreciated that. We started with a vegetable bruschetta appetizer. The veggies were grilled to perfection and the balance of olive oil/balsamic was spot on.
For dinner, we both chose the salmon. Mine was served over risotto and I opted for the veggie medley. The salmon was cooked through (as I like it). It was heavy on garlic, but I like that, too! The kitchen is open, so it's nice to see the staff preparing the food. I feel it adds to the atmosphere. My only complaint --and I shouldn't even call it a complaint as it wasn't a big deal -- is that the drinks were rather weak. We were drinking cosmopolitans. They were flavorful, but tasted light on the booze.
We did not save room for dessert. I even had leftovers, so I'd say the portions are substantial unless you are a big eater.
Lovely place, good food, hospitable staff. I will definitely try Cafe Mangia again.
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