Bear Bites: Maggio’s Italian Grill gets almost perfect marks

Maggio’s located at 1693 Bass Road offers up great Italian food with phenomenal service.

Justin Baxley

Maggio’s located at 1693 Bass Road offers up great Italian food with phenomenal service.

Nick Wooten, Managing Editor

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When you’re here, you’re special.

Unlike its larger Italian counterparts, the simplicity of Maggio’s is refreshing. You won’t find tacky ornamental work or stereotypical prints of the Tuscan countryside.

There are no frills, but Maggio’s doesn’t need to use cheap tricks. Any trip to this Italian gem will be highlighted by attentive service, intimate ambiance and well-prepared food.

 

THE GOOD:

Service:

The service industry in Macon is one of the city’s most perplexing anomalies. I never know what to expect when I sit down. My trip to Maggio’s was a pleasant surprise. Austin, our server, knew the menu well and was able to suggest several dishes from Maggio’s dizzying array of sauce and pasta combinations. He brought bread basket after bread basket to the table of hungry, rowdy college boys. He filled our drinks time and time again. But he didn’t hover. When a friend said he was disappointed with the restaurant’s macaroni and cheese, Austin had the item removed from the bill. I felt at ease in Austin’s capable watch. It was likely the best service I’ve ever received at a restaurant.

Quality:

Maggio’s pasta choices are superb. The sauces are nothing to complain about, either. The alfredo sauce was rich and thick, but still creamy. The arrablata sauce was by far my favorite. This spicy cousin of the classic tomato sauce was cooked in garlic oil and served with the calamari. The chicken parmesan was lightly breaded. Oftentimes, chicken parmesan served at other establishments are too heavily seasoned, but Maggio’s has perfected the dish. Justin got the alfredo sauce with this dish. The sacrilegious amalgamation was — as much as it pains me to admit — delicious. I’d wish I’d thought of it. The bread, dipped in an Olive oil and vinaigrette mixture, was intoxicating. I finished two platefuls by myself — don’t you judge me.

 

THE QUESTIONABLE:

Calamari:

Some of the calamari pieces were overcooked; however, most of them were cooked perfectly. If cooked too long, calamari becomes as chewy as shoe rubber.

Macaroni and Cheese:

A guest in our party didn’t like the macaroni and cheese. He’s a picky eater, but we weren’t too impressed either. Not a big deal.

 

THE BAD:

Floor space:

Maggio’s wasn’t very busy when we arrived. Still, the tables were so close that we managed to disturb a couple sitting near us. The awkward pair beelined for the furthest table. During rush hours, patrons must feel more like sardines than human beings.

 

WHAT WE WOULD DO DIFFERENTLY:

Eat less bread. We should have gotten dessert, but we were too full.

 

NICK: 4.5/5

JUSTIN: 4.5/5

 

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