Mirko Pasta

If you're a pasta lover, you may want to try out Mirko Pasta in Mobile.  I have heard nothing but good things about this place since it opened.  A few of my friends and I decided to check it out.  I have to tell you, I tried out a lot of the items on the menu and for me, there's both hits and misses.

I chose to order the Beef Carpaccio Cipriani as an appetizer.  It's thinly sliced raw beef with capers and shaved Parmesan.  As you can see, there is literally a mound of Parmesan on top of the beef.  I thought it kind of masked the flavor of the beef.  I thought it also need some salt, more olive oil and more capers.  The capers also kind of got lost in the Parmesan.  Capers are also briny so if there was more of it; I think it would have solved the bland problem.

I am still trying to eat better so I ordered a non-pasta dish for dinner.  I figure since it appeared to be a light meal, I would order a salad as well.  After consulting with my waitress, I picked the Insalata di Spinaci or spinach salad.  It's baby spinach with raisins, goat cheese and a honey walnut balsamic vinaigrette.  It wasn't as good as I thought it would be.  The honey walnut balsamic vinaigrette was ok but needed a hefty sprinkling of salt.  I actually found I had to add salt to almost everything and I have been cutting back!

At Mirko's, you can create your own pasta meal or choose from a signature dish.  I chose the Tuscan stew as my entree since it appears to be the only thing on the menu that is not fried or pasta related.  It's a tomato based stew with a ton of seafood.  I saw shrimp, scallops, fish, clams and mussels in mine.  It's served with garlic "croutons" but it looks more like toast.  As with everything else I had,  I had to add a great deal of salt to bring out the flavors.  I think the fish was tilapia because there's this muddy taste I associate with tilapia.  I have to say I was glad I ordered the salad because that stew would not have filled me up.

My dinner companions all got a "make your own" pasta.  My favorite was my brother's choice:  Apple, Sage and Sausage ravioli with the Salsiccia sauce.  The Salsiccia is an Italian sausage, wild mushroom and cream.  It was delicious.  I seriously recommend this to anyone who tries Mirko.  The ravioli is huge however there's not a lot of it.  I think there was 3 or 4 on the plate.  There's a lot of sauce on this plate.  Mirko give you some bread at the beginning.  I would try not to eat it all and use it to sop up this sauce.  

One friend ordered the spinach and ricotta ravioli with the mare sauce; which is a mixed seafood and shellfish in a tomato base sauce.  It reminded me a lot of the Tuscan stew I was having with ravioli in it.  I did have a bite of the ravioli and it was quite good as well.

She was still hungry after her meal so she ordered the fried calamari and zucchini appetizer in an effort to fill up.  This was a refreshing version of a typical Italian dish.  The batter on the calamari is very light and airy.  I don't think it stuck on the calamari very well though.  The marinara sauce was very delicious.  I didn't like the zucchini as much because it was so oily.

Two other girls decided to share an entree.  They chose a long noodle with Granchio sauce; which is lump crab meat, white wine, diced tomatoes, garlic, olive oil and red pepper.  They decided to add salmon on top for a little extra protein.  The girls did not like this at all.  They let the rest of us have a taste and the sauce was very heavy on the white wine.  Fortunately, the waitress offered the pair a different entree.  She told us the chef make each sauce as it is ordered and sometimes they can be a little heavy handed.  The girls chose the same ravioli and the seafood sauce another friend got.  I thought that was great service.

Mirko makes most of the pastas, except for raviolis, on site.  The best part is that there is also gluten free pastas as well.  The restaurant is located in the Legacy Village shopping center off of Dauphin Street.  Mirko is a franchise.  I thought it was a mom and pop but not quite.  It's not a big place but very cozy.  I went on a Friday evening and a lot of people were casual clothes. 
For a look at the menu at Mirko Pasta, click here.

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