First bite… quite good. Last bite… borderline disgusting. That ever happen to you? ‘Cause it just happened to me.
Pick for the evening… Mandolin Aegean Bistro*. This Mediterranean shop offers a Greek-Turkish menu with appetizers, salads, sandwiches, and (heavier) entrees. I had read good things about their fries + yogurt combination, so definitely wanted to try some. I ended up getting the Grilled Halloumi Cheese Sandwich with Turkish Chorizo, which came with fries on the side. Yay! A small side of yogurt was an extra $1. Fine, no biggie.
In case you were wondering, Halloumi is a semi-hard, brined white cheese that’s made from a combination of goat’s and sheep’s (and sometimes cow’s) milk. Because of its high melting point, it’s actually relatively easy to fry.
The first bite of the sandwich was pretty tasty, but sadly, it went downhill from there. There wasn’t anything super exciting about cheese — and IMO, cheese is usually pretty exciting — and the Turkish chorizo was really salty. I mean REALLY salty. Ate dinner more than four hours ago and am still thirsty. Won’t lie… had a semi-difficult time finishing the meal.
I probably shouldn’t have waited until the end to eat the french fries because they got kind of soggy and limp. The oil they were cooked in didn’t seem to be the freshest. Despite dunking the fries in the yogurt (which was actually pretty decent with its subtle sour cream flavor), there was no salvaging them. I had a bit more than half before tossing — and that was only because I always feel bad about wasting food. Unfortunate. Very unfortunate. Especially since I ❤ french fries.
Rating, you ask? Below average, maybe okay.
I will say though, that the ambiance was cute and the service was excellent. They have a covered patio seating area with vegetation and lanterns, and the waiters and even busboys were very nice and personable — but not obsequiously so — which was great! Kudos there, Mandolin!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I am going to go have another cup of water…
4312 NE 2nd Ave
Miami, FL 33137