This is the second time we visited Mare Kitchen. We live in Portland and the first time our SoCal friends introduced us to this gem. This time we visited on our own and again loved it. Great atmosphere, food, and service. Don't let the fact that it is attached to a Holiday Inn Express in Laguna Beach scare you away. You will miss a special place if you do.
Love Momma's meatballs and the eggplant appetizer!
Would recommend for the food ... but not necessarily the service.
upon arrival I announced myself and said I have a reservation the young Hostess said oh ok and did not ask my name or give any ackonledgment really at all .
the patio is the place to be but there was not seating available it was 8PM on a friday night in laguna Beach Calif. the place was almost empty that is not a good sign
The caesar salad was ok but when we asked where the anchovies were they reply is "oh you anchovies that is $3 more "are you kidding me isn't that always on a ceasar ?
the food was ok for me but everyone else liked theirs . the lighting is terrible and this is a place that lights the candle on the table as people are seated if the candles were lit it would have been much better. it was so lax and uncaring this is a tiered place and the attitude shows it . I will not go back
Beyond awful. So sorry Mare has new owner. Not the same place. Went from our fav restaurant to never going again.
Mare cancelled our reservation 30 minutes before we were due to arrive. They said they had a wedding going on. We made these reservations 2 weeks in advance. Very shocking and disappointing. They transferred our reservations to another restaurant which was very noisy and hectic.
Slow services and not attentive
All the food was tasty. My only complaint was they don't have a cocktail list, and attempts to engage the server regarding the bar's ability to make me a cucumber mint lime martini were rather unsuccessful. After some confusion, reticence, and back and forth (it turned out they didn't have cucumbers?), I gave up and got a glass of wine. The Martini That Never Was still appeared on the bill at the end, but it was resolved. All in all a good dining experience -- would return.
The restaurant was empty on. Friday night? Very nice people, we had lemon cielo pasta with Lobster and Squid ink pasta with clams. We ordered a nice bottle of wine..$105!
The service was friendly the food looked great but everything was so over salted... Don't waste your time here it's in a Holiday Inn??
Go to the other store downtown Laguna much better!!
225 for two... 😕
The food was very good but not outstanding. Service was very good and attentive and they offered a nice dessert with a candle for celebrating a birthday. Ambience was deflated a little bit because the restaurant was fairly empty. I'm not sure why because there are inferior restaurants in the area with more people going inside. They need to do something to the exterior to make it more inviting. It feels dark as you first begin to enter the restaurant. The Good Chef certainly deserves more customers than they had that night.
Food was good as always. Service pleasant but very slow. Restaurant was half full on a Friday night in Laguna, not a good sign. Probably not many days left in the life of Mare.
Wow, we couldn't believe we found this hidden gem in Laguna Beach. We love Alessi in Laguna and we love Priozzi in Corona Del Mar, but we can never get in there last minute. They are always so hustle bustle and busy. The food is amazing there but the ambience is noisy. And what do we find, the sister restaurant to those two, hidden in of all places the Holiday Inn in Laguna Beach! Who would ever think to go to a Holiday Inn and find this culinary delight by the same owners and menu as the other two popular hotspots. I hesitate to write this review as I'm not sure we want this secret to get out. Mario was an amazing server, a few months from Italy, and extremely attentive and accommodating. We loved the extensive wine list and the food was amazing, among the best we've enjoyed for these foodies.
We received a call early afternoon, confirming our reservation, and I asked if we could move it up 30 minutes as my family was caught in traffic,(from 5:00 to 5:30, they open @5:00pm) it was fine. When we arrived we didn't have a table, we asked for an outdoor table, and they said they had a party of 40 coming in at about 6:30 and if we could eat in that time it would be ok, not! We then searched for a table to accommodate us (6) by the patio front door, and it was too small , they sat us like 3, 2 and 1. I asked for another small table to be added, and they were not happy to accommodate us, but they finally did after the help kept discussing who should do what, but only after I started getting angry and headed for a small table to bring over, like 10 feet away! all in my party were upset. More people started coming in, and they were more concerned with getting them in,(party of 40+) and then several more parties of like 20,or 30 people. We didn't have a regular waitress most of the time, and I had to ask the bus boy for service most of the time. The portions were small, and the prices were high for what we got. We ordered a cheese and meat platter of our choice, and all of it was run together, it had shaved pieces of meat, with 6 tiny pieces of cheese on it, with a lettuce border, larger than the main items. My pasta primavera with chicken was 1 cup of pasta with a few chunks of meat in it. I am not happy with this place, and would not recommend it for any one. Also the parking was nonexistent, it took 30 minutes for my family to find a parking space, and they had to walk a long ways. We stayed 20 feet away with hotel parking for us. I might add that I made this reservation about 2 weeks before hand! 'nough said!!!!
Chef did not plate the vegetables on their Lamb entrée. The wait staff did not even noticed.
Dining at 5 pm, my wife and I were one of only two couples in the restaurant. One would have thought with many staff buzzing around that the service would have been excellent. It wasn't . It was at times very slow. The food was mediocre at best. I had the beef mini ravioli. The sauce was bitter with an unpleasant aftertaste and the raviolis themselves were pasty . My wife's spaghetti had the same sauce with a mealy veal meatball. This restaurant is not inexpensive and we were expecting much more. It was an anniversary dinner (our 21st) and let's just say it is a dinner best forgotten.
We arrived at MCL and we were greeted by the lovely hostess. Our waiter made the perfect selections for us to diner "family style". The pasta was unbelievable and the sauces were unique and delicious.
Our guests were thoroughly impressed with MCL and we highly recommend it to anyone considering making a reservation.
The food was outstanding. The service impeccable. Jeff our waiter was knowledgable, friendly, professional and overall amazing.
Chef Pirozzi experiment at the Holiday Inn continues to confound us. This is the third time we've visited.
Love the inventive combo of flavor and all round good quality ingredients - even love limited wine selection
Please upgrade your service. Please, else we'll go elsewhere
Our overall experience as good as the food had some real highlights like the lamb stew/soup and the gluten free ravioli. The service was friendly but not as attentive as I would have liked. Our short rib dish as disappointing so would recommend staying with the Italian food options for best experience.
Waited forever at the door for someone to take us to the table. Once at the table, we sat there for 15 minutes and no once ever came to our table. Once the table next to us was seated and offered a drink order, we just left. Never again! First warning sign should have been that this restaurant was in a Holiday Inn! Haha