Executive chef/owner serves excellent fare in a friendly setting
When my husband took me to a surprise pre-birthday dinner recently, I was very happy to discover we were going to Mimi’s Table Tallahassee. Aside from ordering takeout, I hadn’t had dinner inside Mimi’s since the pandemic started.
The restaurant, owned by executive chef William Lawson, has been one of our favorites since it opened in 2018.
The setting is relaxing and friendly but it has a more intimate feel with white tablecloths, candlelight and fresh flowers (thanks to William’s wife Holly). Young servers are attentive and helpful, able to answer questions about the dishes.
My husband and I were even impressed by the hand sanitizer William has put at each table. It’s in a sleek container filled with a jade green mixture that Holly makes, so it’s soft and smells good. It’s reassuring but not ugly.
We took one bite of an amuse-bouche (French for mouth amuser) – pulled barbecue pork with an Asian sesame slaw – and I was reminded right away what I have been missing. On this recent visit, we dove into a basket of delicious bread and butter. (Our server asked if we wanted it and our answer was of course, ‘yes!’).
We love fried calamari but rarely order it because it’s usually a disappointment. Not at Mimi’s. Our appetizer brought a large plate of the lightly breaded squid, rings and tentacles, just the right amount of crispness, mixed with fried artichoke hearts and peppers. It’s served with a perky fra diavolo dipping sauce but you won’t feel bedeviled (sorry I couldn’t resist).
There are lots of other tempting appetizer options such as wild sea scallops, smoked fish spread, charcuterie, salads and our other choice, the hearty potato soup. We savored the creamy, smooth purée of potatoes and vegetables (onion, celery, shallots) spiked with smoky pancetta and a hint of white truffle oil and garlic.
For a palate cleanser, we had a dollop of cooling mango sorbet with a bite of fried plantain, a flavorful combination.
We were nearly full by the time we dove into our terrific entrees of Tuscan chicken, which was always one of my husband’s top choices. It’s browned to a perfect golden crust with a fragrant lemon caper sauce, served with mashed potatoes and green beans.
I had the seafood grill, a huge serving with shrimp and sea scallops on a bed of grilled corn kernels, chopped onions, tomatoes, peppadew pepper and roasted red potatoes with arugula and a light white wine sauce. The dish was garnished with a hefty scattering of fresh lump blue crab.
Mimi’s has a good selection of wine, port and beer (including Proof Brewing Company‘s Eightfive-0 and La La Land) but we opted for the “I Need a Vacation” red Sangria with a blend of red wines and citrus juices. It was light and refreshing.
I couldn’t figure out why my husband was insisting on dessert, but when our Key lime pie arrived, he brought out a candle and lit it to wish me Happy Birthday. I won’t wait until another birthday to dine at Mimi’s again but it sure helped make this one a special occasion.
Details: Mimi’s Table is at 1311 Miccosukee Rd.; 850-999-8406. Hours: 5 to 9 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday. For more information about Mimi’s, also see our story/review at tallahasseetable.com/mimis-table-restaurant-review/