Eagle-eyed readers who drove past Mirko Italian Restaurant at Towers Mall this morning noticed a big change: The sign now says the place is called Fresco Italian Restaurant.
That’s because co-owners Randy Sowden and Mike Boggins decided to disenfranchise from Mirko, an Atlanta, Georgia-based company.
“We felt like we had a difference of opinion about what needed to happen to make the restaurant successful,” Sowden said. He said they could not come to an agreement with the Mirko folks so they decided to strike out on their own.
Diners will see some changes, but Sowden and Boggins hope those changes will make the restaurant better. They said fresh pasta, sauces and other recipes will still be made in-house but the recipes are different from what they were under Mirko. For example, the Fresco lasagna is now made with Mornay sauce instead of bechamel (the difference is that cheese is added to Mornay sauce) and with both spinach and egg noodles instead of all spinach sheets.
The white bean dip that came with rolls at the beginning of the meal has been replaced with an olive oil and herb dip, and the rolls, which many complained were too dense, have been replaced with lighter rolls that are baked in-house, Sowden said.
He stressed that the restaurant is now 100 percent locally owned and the staff this week is the same it was last week when the place was called Mirko.
Mirko originally opened in October, but this change has been in the works for a while. If you go to Fresco, let us know what you think.
In other restaurant news, Star City Coffee House on Brambleton Avenue in Roanoke has closed. Read more and comment on The Storefront blog.