Jodi and I were looking for a restaurant on Opentable for a dinner on a Friday. We decided to book a table at Cara Mia, an Italian restaurant in Hell's Kitchen. We passed in front of it few times, so I thought we should give it a try. I admit that when we arrived, I has a bad feeling; it might be the fact that one of the staff members was outside, trying to convince people to come for dinner...
It is a big place, but, I thought it missed some charm that you would find in places like Rosemary's or Abbottega. The service was also not that great: it was slow and not because of the kitchen, but simply because the staff was not really paying attention at what was going on in the dining room. And trust me: the bill came faster than our food!
They brought us a bread basket after we ordered our food. There was focaccia as well as country bread in it, that we ate with some olive oil.
For the appetizer, we shared the calamari arrosto or roasted calamari with wild mushrooms.
The calamari was good and there were lots of mushrooms...and garlic. It was a nice start, despite the amount of garlic.
Then, we decided to order some house made pasta. Yes, Cara Mia offers house made as well as store bought pasta and it makes sense that they mention it on the menu. Jodi ordered the parpadelle that were served with portobello, porcini and shiitake mushrooms in a garlic and olive oil sauce.
On my side, I chose the cavatelli with bolognese sauce.
I definitely preferred the parpadelle that were cooked al dente and would have probably been great with the bolognese sauce, the cavatelli being a bit doughy. I was a bit disappointed to say the least, as I was really looking forward for fresh pasta.
We finished our meal with the tiramisu that was not good: it was dry and had an off taste.
It was a disappointing dinner at Cara Mia and I do not think I would go back anytime soon. I should have gone to La Masseria located few blocks from there!
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