Mancini's & Philly Sandwich Co
- arizonagirl May 14, 2007 04:09 PM
Stumbled upon this place by accident but I'm so glad I did. They are from the East coast and they are serving the real thing. The menu consists of both complete Italian dinners (yes, soup or salad are included) and authentic Philly sandwiches. The owners are from South Philly and they know how to make good food. So far I've sampled the following:
roast beef sandwich
roast pork Italiano
bowties with crabmeat
linguini with mussels
All of which were delicious. the place is brand new so they are still working on finalizing some additional menu items. One of which is going to be cannoli.
If you're in the mood for authentic philly food give this place a try. I don't think you'll be dissapointed.
They're located at 5626 W Bell Rd 602-439-2285.
We also stumbled on this place a couple weeks ago, at dinner time. It had been open for only about a week, and was nearly empty. I was hoping for lighter pasta that did not involve heavy red or cream sauce, but didn't find anything like that on the menu, so I ordered linguini with mushroom cream sauce and asked the waiter to request the kitchen to go very light on the sauce. I would have hated to see how much went on the normal order because this had to be a 2,000 calorie entree. My husband ordered lasagna, which actually was rather on the light side.
However, as we finished our meal a woman came to our table and asked for comments, and she turned out to be the wife of the chef/owner. We told her we had been taken aback when the waiter brought out pre-fab powdered cheese when my husband asked for some Parmesan, and she seemed surprised and said they could have given him freshly grated pecorino. (Who knew? Ask for Parmesan, and you get the canned stuff. Maybe you have to ask for freshly grated cheese and see what arrives?) Then I told her about my hope for lighter pasta, and she beckoned her husband to the table, and they told us that although the menu features items that they think would be considered popular, they are glad to make anything upon request. They were very eager to please, and said we could even bring in a recipe and they would make it for us.
We told them we had laughed at the card on the table that listed one of the desserts as something like "banana cream sprinkled with coconut pie," and they said this had been a last minute desperate printing, and showed us the replacement that read more correctly "banana cream pie sprinkled with toasted coconut." They are trying to get things right and work out the kinks.
Since this place is only about six blocks from our house we will definitely give them another try. I plan to ask if they can make a light pasta primavera using whatever fresh vegetables they find in their walk-in, and see what happens. We asked if they live on the West side and they said they live in Scottsdale, so we thanked them for opening in an area that desperately needs some creative, independently owned, non-chain restaurants. A mile or two further down Bell Road there are crowds waiting to get into the Olive Garden and Chili's, so we are hoping some of them drive a little further east and give this place a chance to grow.
We just went to Mancini's this Saturday and it was a real love/hate experience. I ordered the Clam and Linguine which was awesome. The Mrs. had a salad with a salad dressing she loved. It was Garlic Balsamic. I really thought the food was about as good as I have ever had. One of the Mancinis was the hostess as well and she was very attentive. I think I saw her more than my waiter. But, that is about as far the "love" part of this story goes.
The first thing that went wrong was the realization that they ran out of bread. This is an Italian restaurant. What do you mean you ran out of bread on Saturday night at 7:30pm!!! That is inexcusable. Next, our waiter was very poor. While he was well adept at apologizing, he wasn't so great at filling glasses, or showing up much at all. Very substandard service. The impression he left on me is that he has never waited tables before. When he did show up again at the end of the meal, I asked for a cocktail. I did see him go to the bar and ask the bartender to make the drink but because the bartender didn't have one of the ingredients, he decided to just ignore my order!!! Dude, I know there are three ladies at the bar who seem to be into you but do your job first. He seemed to be as much a rookie as my waiter and I was pretty steamed at this point. Finally, after someone other than the bartender made my drink I asked for the check. 30+ minutes later we finally got it after I had to get up and find it and bring it to my table. Geez!
The food was very good. However, the service was so bad that it completely overshadowed what should have been a great experience. Come on Mancini's. Service is so important to a small restaurant like this. It should have been so much better and the staff had all the chances in the world but I could have gone next door to Carrabas again and had a much better night with the Mrs. We won’t be back and we cannot recommend it either.
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