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May 14, 2007 12:52 AM

Mirabelle - big disappointment

We had a wine disaster there awhile back. We ordered a bottle of white wine (pinot grigio). It had a real zinger of a bad taste. So much so, it made us wince. This was when it was first poured for my husband to taste. He had me try it, too. We said there was something wrong with it.

The waitress took it back, and then she came back out with it and said the manager/owner said it was fine. She poured it out. We looked at each other surprised, but thought - OK, this is strange.

We periodically tried it, but it just didn't open up. Our appetizers arrived, and we mentioned that the wine still wasn't good. The manager/owner came out, swilled a bit of the wine, and said that it was fine. He also said that we wouldn't be getting another bottle from him. So we left without touching the appetizers.

I hope he enjoyed that bottle.

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  1. WOW... that is nothing like any of my experiences at Mirabelle. I have enjoyed many client lunches there, with exceptional service. Also, along with three friends, I've taken two different series of wine tasting classes. The management and staff have always been very professional.

    I know that after an experience like that, it is difficult to give it another try. Why don't you consider going for lunch? The prices are lower and the menu is nice. My point is, it's a smaller investment if you walk away and never come back. The primary point - this is the very first negative impression of Mirabelle that I have heard and I've been dining there since they first opened. If you have a GOOD lunch experience, maybe you'll be able to forgive the bad and have a very nice restaruarnt to enjoy...

    6 Replies
    1. re: Rene

      I would think it would be pretty difficult to convince oneself or someone else to return to a restaurant-for lunch or otherwise-after an experience like that.

      1. re: Twill

        I agree, as I stated "I know that after an experience like that, it is difficult to give it another try".

        I try to keep to the "three strikes and you're out" rule with a restaurant that I want to like... but that's just me. If I've read and heard from those whom I respect, expereinces entirely different from what I experience, I'll assume there was a hic-cup. If that assumption is correct, I'll have another destination of choice. If it's not, I'll have the satisfaction of knowing that I gave them a fair chance and am not missing anything.

        1. re: Rene

          I'll generally give a restaurant a second chance for fudging a dish or screwing up an order or simple bad service, but in this particular case, the manager/host seems to have approached the situation with a fair bit of malice, which is pretty inexcusable, IMO. And in the case of upscale restaurants-which I think it's fair to categorize Mirabelle as-there's certainly a higher bar set for service than at most eateries.

          I haven't eaten at Mirabelle, so it may very well be that this is a completely isolated incident. But it doesn't instill confidence, and this topic shows just how important it is to make a good impression on every customer; you never know which of your patrons may be posting their experiences in the public domain.

          1. re: Twill

            I'm blown away reading this!! I've eaten at Mirabelle many times and enjoyed it. But I have to say if anything like this ever happened to me, either at Mirabelle or any other place, I would never go back again. Ever.

            1. re: austx03

              Yeah, I can see how it might be hard to give a place "three strikes" before writing them off, when they didn't even give you, the diner, "three strikes" before writing you off.

              I actually thought this original post was possibly a parody of the similarly titled "Wink - big dissapointment" thread. Forgive me biggles for thinking so.

              1. re: Nab

                It's not really a parody, but I didn't want to add a reply to the wink thread. It would be unfairly punishing Wink for something that happened at Mirabelle.

    2. So, biggles, what did you pay for, if at all? Or did you just walk out - not particularly a bad idea in this instance, IMO. Unfortunately, they probably never even missed you.

      I never returned to Mirabelle after a visit on an evening during which the service was lousy. Granted, they were crowded and busy, but still, the service was unapologetically bad. My guess is that they may be suffering from a combination of good food, deficient personnel and an over-abundance of snobbish, meek customers - a situation in which the customer is often expendable.

      1 Reply
      1. re: avi

        We didn't pay for anything. All we had consumed were periodic sips of pretty bad wine from a couple of wineglasses.

        The waitstaff was actually quite kind. They seemed very embarrassed about the behavior of their boss.

      2. Amazing...I've eaten there several times and have had good experiences. I certainly don't blame you...bad wine ruins a good meal. Rude service ruins it even more. I've also eaten across the street many times at Mesa Ranch. Really cool place with an interesting menu that features some wild game entrees. You should try it some time if the Mirabelle neighborhood is convenient for you.

        1. The original comment has been removed
          1. I was at Mirabelle for lunch a couple of weeks ago and also had a bad experience, though this time it was the waiter who gave us terrible service! He was absolutely rude! We were a party of 8 or 9. Maybe thinking that the tip would be automatically included, he figured he didn't need to do us any favors. Luckily, he did not include the tip. We all paid separately but the waiter decided to pocket $20 in cash that was meant to go towards the food bill. We eventually sorted it out, but he could not have been any more contemptuous! I was quite disappointed since I usually enjoy this place tremendously.

            1 Reply
            1. re: texasgirly

              We have eaten at Mirabelle's twice and the food has been really good both times, but the service wasn't great the first time. We had much better luck with our second visit there.