Mama D's Italian Kitchen in Newport Beach - it's to die for! We ate here on Friday night after we got settled in at the Fairmont and headed to a cabana poolside for a couple of hours to watch the moon come up. While getting ready for dinner, I suggested pizza. Bizarre, considering the fact that I'm not normally a pizza person. And, being near the ocean, you'd think I would have suggested sea food, which is much more up my alley. Alas, for some reason, pizza sounded good to me that night. (I get the real craving for it maybe once or twice a year.) So, my husband whipped out his handy dandy iPhone and yelped local Italian restaurants. Mama D's and another were two that struck his fancy. I decisively said, "No, Let's go to Mama D's. It's closer and the name sounds cooler." So, we headed to Newport Blvd. and found the infamous Mama D's.
My husband let Jenna and I out to go in and get a table while he parked the car. We were quickly greeted by a very nice hostess who immediately offered us a piece of bread and sat us. Jenna declined the bread. I indulged! Delicious!! My hubby came in just seconds after we sat down. He was greeted by one of the owners who guided him to our table. Then our super sweet server, Lauren, greeted us, showed us the menu, asked if we had ever been to Mama D's before, and told us she'd be back with our drinks and a surprise. We all wondered if we'd heard her correctly and what surprise she could be bringing us. She brought us our drinks and then took our order. We ordered a create your own 4 topping pizza: pepperoni, olives, mushrooms, and eggplant. (Kinda weird combo, right? It was heavenly...I assure you!!) We also added a salad consisting of simply cucumber, fresh tomatoes (like melt-in-your-mouth delicious tomatoes), celery, and olive oil & vinegar. Lauren brought us our salad first and a few minutes later she brought us our surprise. It was a plate of homemade cheese raviolis. Holy moly! I think those were the best raviolis I have ever had!! Finally our pizza came out and my hubby told Miss Lauren that it was Miss Jenna's b-day. There was no way we could eat all of our food, so we asked for a box. Lauren came back with a box and a plate of homemade chocolate chip cookies. I was SO full, but we each tried a little of the cookies. Yummy! So, then, out of the corner of our eyes we see Lauren coming back with a group of people. She rounded up her fellow co-workers and a group of patrons and they sang Happy Birthday to Jenna as Lauren plopped a bowl of spumoni ice cream (one of my favorites!) in front of her and another waiter had Jenna pick a prize out of a miniature treasure chest. (She got a card personally signed with messages from every employee and a redeemable card for a free appetizer on her next visit.) Can you say PHENOMENAL CUSTOMER SERVICE?!?
Holy Cow!! Mama D's knocked our socks off! I couldn't find a single bad thing to say about this place. It's wonderful! As we walked out of the restaurant, Jenna, my husband, and I discussed what an enjoyable time we had just had - and good food to boot. I said, "If Disneyland is known as the Happiest Place on Earth, then this quite possibly may be the FRIENDLIEST place on Earth!"