The first time I visited Casa Mia Deli & Cafe was three years ago (time flies!!). Some colleagues and I headed there for a workday lunch but it was too crowded so we left since no seats were available. To ensure the success of my second visit, Y & I planned for a Monday early lunch at 1130am, and prayed that everyone was having Monday blues and not heading out for lunch. People were probably still half asleep at work so it did not even get crowded way into lunch time.
Casa Mia is unusually hidden despite being located in the core of Uptown Waterloo. Housed at the dead-end corner of Father David Bauer Drive, adjacent to Sole, it is hard to “accidentally pass by” this cafe if you do not already know about it.
Our family wants to welcome you and your family to “Casa Mia” and provide you with a variety of European deli meats, cheeses, gourmet foods and a fantastic Sushi Bar from our family owned and run premises. Come sit and relax in our café, while enjoying the best espressos and cappuccinos in town.
I like their website – very clean page with all the information you need.
It feels like a scaled-down version of Vincenzo’s, without the fresh grocery section. Let’s take a tour starting from the left side of the entrance!
Specialty chocolates for sale.
There is a wide variety of Asian condiments available due to the sushi bar.
Yes, there is a sushi bar. Watta Mia serves a wide variety of Bento boxes with the standards like 8 pieces Rainbow Maki ($10.95), Red Dragon ($11.95) or the attempt at creativity with Waterloo Maki ($10.95) – California roll topped with salmon.
Beside the sushi counter is the huge deli counter. They offer grilled paninis ($6.75) and sandwiches ($5.75). Make it a combo with soup/salad for about $2 more. There are numerous other items such as pulled pork and quiche available as well.
You have to order at the sushi/deli counter. Then, they will provide you with a receipt and all payments go to the far right corner of the cafe – coffee counter!
Yup, pay for all your food here, not just the cappuccinos. The cafe section has a good assortment of homemade pastries.
On the Table for Maple:
- Cappuccino ($2.95 reg, $3.75 large)
- Grilled Panini – one meat, one cheese, one vegetable ($6.75)
- Assorted Sashimi Combo – 10 pieces ($10.95)
Double shot cappuccino.
I am always wary when places advertise themselves having the BEST XXX, which in this case, the “best espressos and cappuccinos in town“. Tsk tsk tsk. Self-praise is international disgrace. Hence, I felt a little bias and negative against the coffee even before I tried it.
Consistency and persistence of foam:
Foam should be smooth, silky and free of bubbles. Judges will evaluate under the surface with a spoon for total perception of consistency throughout the drink.
The taste balance should be a harmonious blend of the sweetness of the milk and the espresso as a building block. The drink should not be too milky: a distinct taste of espresso should be present.
Surprisingly, this cup was just spot-on. It was so velvety and smooth, creating a calming sensation as the perfect blend of espresso, milk and foam slid down my throat. I was totally blown away! This little coffee counter at the corner of Casa Mia is probably the MOST hidden amazing coffee spot in Waterloo.
Cheers aside, it felt extremely weird having to eat sushi after drinking coffee. We really did not think this through.
With pineapples, berries, and melons. Just an overall odd combination with the odd sushi bar in a deli cafe.
To test out the quality of fish, we got the assorted combo with four pieces of salmon sashimi, and three pieces each of tuna/red snapper. Our expectations were kept really low as Casa Mia is really more of a deli/cafe/store rather than a sushi restaurant. The salmon sashimi was alright, but the red snapper and tuna were rather tasteless and still slightly frozen. The blandness of the fish could be also due to the deep cappuccino flavour I was still digesting.
Coffee and sushi – not a good combination.
I chose chicken, provolone and red peppers. They have a huge cheese selection (for sale) beside the deli, resulting in some lovely provolone in the panini. No alternative bread choices available so probably not a good place for those who prefer other breads/gluten-free. Although small, it was undeniably a solidly good panini. I would suggest getting the combo of soup/salad as this was hardly filling for Y.
Casa Mia has a more intimate setting than Vincenzo’s, with its owner frequently coming around to check if everything was alright. As I mourn for the loss of Matter of Taste in Uptown Waterloo, I am so glad to have found another go-to place for my cappuccino cravings.
Teeheee. Couldn’t help but to order another!
An overall lovely place with great variety of offerings for a quick-lunch. Coffee is unbelievably amazing.