OK, so Spokane might not be a haven for Italian restaurants, but there are a few bright spots. Mission Bistro, for example, delivers pasta cooked to perfection with an excellent marinera sauce. The former, especially, is important to me. Way too many places in town, be it upscale restaurants or quick-fix Olive Garden clones, steers clear of al dente noodles and instead go for mushy goopy messes. Why that is, I don't know. But the fact that Mission Bistro actually cooks their pasta perfectly is enough reason to recommend it for me.
Luckily there's more to the spot than that. Their stromboli -- a dish some claim was created in Spokane (I won't go in to it here, but I doubt what we now call "stromboli" actually was from here) -- is excellent. The crust is piping hot and has a wonderful texture. Dip it in the aforementioned marinera, and you got something good going.
What pushes Mission Bistro into the "excellent" territory, though, is the bread pudding dessert. Many places in town serve good ones, heck both Latah Bistro and Sante do them excellently, but this is probably the best in town. This is the stuff you'd expect a homemade Italian bread pudding to taste like. And that is good, in all its sweet gooeyness.
I don't know if Mission Bistro will transport you straight to the Mediterranean or not, but on the strength of the doneness of the pasta -- which you can also buy in bulk -- and the bread pudding, I'd have a hard time finding a reason not to recommend this spot.
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