I'm a self-professed car nerd (though my girlfriend would also profess that if you don't believe me), so I don't take my car just anywhere. Since moving to KC, I'd gotten my car serviced at Northtowne Mazda, since that's where I bought it from. Their prices were fair but when I had them price some bigger jobs, the prices started looking a bit high. I talked to an acquaintance of mine that's a service tech at Superior Lexus (so he knows his stuff) and he recommended Northtown Auto Clinic.
I sent an email through Northtown's website and got a call back a day or so later from Northtown's owner. He had a couple follow-up questions and then sent me an estimate via email. The estimate was lower than the Mazda dealer so I went with them. The work was completed beyond my satisfaction and Northtown is now my official mechanic.
It's hard to say they fixed a specific problem on a car better than another place, but I can tell you what makes them different than lots of places, that makes them stand out to me. On multiple occasions, I've asked them to do something and been told, "we could do that work, but you don't need it yet." They turn down easy sales of extra work and that has earned my trust. Car repair isn't always as simple as "this is broken so replace this part" and, for tough problems, they've recommended different testing solutions to me, rather than just replacing parts and hoping the problem goes away. That's the mark of a true mechanic to me, rather than just a parts-replacer.
The only two negatives I have are that they do not work on Saturdays and don't have loaner cars, things that bigger shops and dealers do have.