By Tracy Dietlin

Sometimes a restaurant’s name can be deceiving. That would be the case with The Slice Restaurant.

Until last week, when I had the pleasure of dining there I had always thought it was “just” a pizza place. Much to the contrary, it is actually a full menu, Italian restaurant, and a very tasty one I might add.

My husband and I went on a busy Thursday night when the wait staff was bustling about making sure to attend properly to each table. We were seated immediately and given menus and water, along with a wine menu. We shared a bottle of cabernet while enjoying the basket of fresh bread that was placed before us.

We decided to split a Caesar salad while trying to make the big decisions on our main entrees. The lettuce was crisp and the dressing not overdone, which I always appreciate.

As we perused the menu there were so many items to choose from that I asked our friendly waiter, Pablo, what he recommended,  as I was trying to decide between the vegetable lasagna, salmon risotto, or build my own pasta with the meatballs and marinara. He suggested the salmon risotto and described it in delicious detail. Then the owner, Jack Srebnik, came over and talked me into the meatballs, but with the Bolognese sauce, which is what I chose. Who was I to argue with the owner?

And of course Jack was right on point. The sauce was delicious on top of the penne that I selected for my “build your own pasta” dish. The best way for me to measure an Italian restaurant is how good their meatballs are. These were flavorful, tender and moist. I definitely made the right choice, but I look forward to returning to try the salmon risotto that Pablo boasted about.

My husband went for the “build your own pasta” also, and decided on the fettuccini alfredo, with sausage and asparagus. I insisted on a bite of the sausage and it was tasty enough for me to want to go back and try a sausage pizza.

Even though we were full, I had to try the tiramisu. The moist texture and the frosting on top made it one of my favorites.

There are a few things that I must point out that impressed me about dining at the Slice: freshly grated parmesan cheese on top of my pasta, all sauces are fresh (with the exception of the marinara) and are made to order on the spot, the service is great and the prices are affordable.

The Slice is a restaurant where you can bring the whole family, dine with friends or enjoy a date night out.  While they don’t have fancy white linens, the quality of the food and service reflect a restaurant that does. I appreciate a delicious meal with a quality wine list that doesn’t gauge my pocketbook.

I also must note that Jack goes to each table to check on every diner like they were a guest in his home. He also is the co-owner of Maracas Mexican restaurant next door, and it was interesting to watch him go back and forth during our time there to give the patrons at both restaurants the same attention. Almost every diner there called him by name, but more importantly, he knew their names.

I highly recommend The Slice located at 72775 Dinah Shore Dr. in Rancho Mirage, conveniently located right off the 10 freeway at the Monterey exit by the Rancho 16 theatres. 760-202-3122.

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