Quick look: Authentic Italian dishes created with love. Expect traditional Italian ingredients with modern flair. Restaurant will be busy during dinner hours so go ahead and make a reservation. Solid all the way around, can be a top contender with a few minor tweaks.
In depth review: Was visiting my NY transplant family that lives in the Sarasota area and they kept ranting and raving about Mediterraneo. We made a reservation for Monday, March 10th 2014 at 7pm. Surprised how busy the restaurant was for a Monday night. They must be attracting an upscale clientele as many of the cars parked outside were luxury, high end rides. The restaurant had a modern feel and is charming and quaint. We were greeted by the owner upon entering (nice feature). He even remembered my family and walked us to the table.
Service was prompt, at first. We ordered the calamari appetizer (not breaded and fried) and the sauce that accompanied it was tasty. Also ordered the Caprese (Tomato and Mozzarella) appetizer and it was superb. We also enjoyed the fresh baked bread brought to the table. For my entree I ordered the "Costoletta di vitello alla Parmigiana" (Breaded and pounded bone - in Veal chop with tomato sauce and melted mozzarella cheese) - aka: Veal Parmesan. It was without a doubt one of the best Veal Parm dishes that I have had in a long time. Well done, I has in Heaven. I also over-indulged and ate the entire thing. I was beyond full as the portion was HUGE!
Everyone at the table in our group of seven loved their entrees. The lady loved her lamb shank and said it was great. So the quality of the food is obviously top notch. I could feel the Italian love coming out of that kitchen!
The only area of improvement that I can offer and why I removed a star from the rating is due to the inconsistent service we had during our meal. First of all it took way too long for drinks to appear at the table after placing the initial order. I even had to re-order a couple drinks after the drinks never made their way out to us. The server had no explanation, nor did he offer an apology. I also had to ask for more bread, water refills and requested that he remove a few dirty plates that had been sitting in front of us.
With a few minor tweaks this restaurant will be unstoppable in Sarasota and South Florida. The food was top notch and reminded me of the Italian restaurants I grew up eating at in New York.
We will be back and hopefully they will earn a five star rating from me. Owner also said goodbye to us as we left. Love the personal touch!