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“Good but not spectacular”

Mia Francesca Trattoria
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Ranked #124 of 1,526 Restaurants in Raleigh
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: Italian, Seafood, Wine Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Adjacent to the Renaissance Hotel
Description: Mia Francesca Trattoria -Tuscan Italian restaurant – located in North Hills – Raleigh, NC invites you to come and experience truly authentic, made from scratch, farm to table Italian cuisine. At Mia Francesca our chefs cultivate the freshest ingredients to bring you what true Northern Italian casual fine dining is – fresh, local ingredients, rustic, and made from scratch. Stepping into Mia Francesca Trattoria is like stepping back in time and space to Northern Italy near Tuscany – where food is and was crafted with simple but creative flavors, where meals were enjoyed with family and friends, and wines and desserts were never skipped – where food is celebrated along with the company of friends and family. At Francesca’s we bring this love of food to North Hills in North Raleigh, adjacent to the Renaissance Hotel.
Reviewed May 5, 2013

My husband and I went here because we had been given a gift card. It is a 25 min drive from home so we hoped it would be a great experience. The restaurant is in the nice North Hills shopping area. The interior is nice. It is not a romantic restaurant but a nice atmosphere. The service was good and the food was good. The wine was just so so and we bought the most expensive Cabernet by the glass. I had the halibut and my husband had the seafood linguine. The halibut was good, I would go back if I were closer but not sure I will go out of my way. If you are in the area worth visiting.

Thank Carync6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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156 - 160 of 201 reviews

Reviewed April 24, 2013

This restaurant is convenient for the guests in the hotel next door. That is probably their market.

I’d eaten here twice before and it was really great. Last night was a bad surprise.
The menus had small script font, and the lighting was low. And it was noisy.
I started with a Caesar salad. It was very different from any Caesar I’ve had before. It was kind of like ordering a hamburger and getting a tuna sandwich.
I ordered the chicken parmesan. It was two pieces of breaded chicken topped with cheese and tomato sauce. The quality was somewhere between a TV dinner and bar food.
Another person in our party had the salmon, and was unhappy. Two other people were okay with their meals. Hence the average rating, and that's being generous..
We complained to the server, and were politely dismissed. That tells me it’s likely to continue average, at best. I'm writing them off; Raleigh has too many great restaurants to eat hotel food.

Thank NandRW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 9, 2013

Tried it for the first time after getting a Groupon type deal--$20 for $40 worth of food. We started with a carpacio for antipasto which was very good and at $12 it was plenty for 2 people. My wife was very pleased with her main dish which was Sea Scallop Fagioli. she gave me a taste and I thought it was very good. Look on the menu for a description. I ordered a dish called Cozze Vino Bianco--described as mussels, garlic, chili flakes, white wine and linguini. This was pretty disappointing. I asked the waitress if the sauce was a broth and she said it was. But in fact it was a rather run of the mill slightly spicy aglio olio with not even a hint of the advertised white wine taste. No broth at all, just oil and garlic coated pasta. And to top it off, of the 15 or so mussels that came with the dish 4 were empty shells. Lastly, be aware, the wine is very expensive and they are not generous with the amount.

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Thank Roy C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2013

The food was good, tasty and sizable portions, but ... We were 7 men, who know vodka: we ordered Grey Goose - a very expensive brand, especially in this type of restaurant - what the waitress brought to us was definitely NOT Grey Goose - it was something so cheap that all 7 of us could hardly drink it. When we told this to the waitress, all she did was to keep mumbling that she saw herself as the bartender pored this vodka from the Grey Goose bottle. Not very convincing.
So, eat and drink sodas in this restaurant, but do NOT order expensive brands of alcohol - most definitely you'll get some cheap substitute for the price of the expensive brand.

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1  Thank mika3873
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 21, 2013

(see explanation of ratings below)

This is technically "fine dining", but it has none of the sparkle of other fine dining places in the area, perhaps because it's a national chain.

Allow one hour (no dessert).

About $30-40 per person including 50% off a bottle of wine (Mondays), no dessert, gratuity not included.

The 50% off bottles on Mondays is an okay deal: they mark-up most wines 250-260%. So, if you take a bottle of Moet Imperial NV that you paid $38 for at Total Wine, pay the corkage fee of $20, that's $58 for a bottle for which Mia Francesca's will charge you $100 ($50 on Mondays). So, take a bottle with you unless it's a Monday.

I liked the pizzas here better when they first opened: I think they were thinner and crisper than they are now.

Loved the lentils with spinach and goat cheese appetizer. Good, hearty, healthful dish.

About my ratings:

Only fine dining establishments can garner five stars. Until TripAdvisor realizes that a fast food joint cannot possibly be ranked equally with a $100 per person place, I need to draw the line somewhere. If we were only talking about the quality and presentation of the food, it would be a different story. But, as we know, TripAdvisor's rankings take into account the entire dining experience.

Therefore, I divide restaurants into three categories (and I wish TripAdvisor would do the same):

1) fast food and "fast-casual" (no table service )

2) casual and "posh casual" dining (table service)

3) fine dining (linen napkins, no plastic cups, no TV's in dining room, typically more expensive than casual dining)

Fine dining can earn a max of five stars. Casual dining can earn a max of four stars. Fast food can earn a max of three stars.

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

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