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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Best Italian restaurant

Capa Sante at Sotto Sotto. Photo: Elissa Eubanks / Staff

Capa Sante at Sotto Sotto. Photo: Elissa Eubanks / Staff

YOUR PICKS

1) Sotto Sotto

You say, “Sotto Sotto is outstanding by any measure. A bit pricey for some budgets, but worth every penny.”

2) Alfredo’s

3) Provino’s

4) Dominick’s

5) Nino’s

Bevette all'Amatriciana from La Pietra Cucina. Photo: Becky Stein / Special

Bevette all'Amatriciana from La Pietra Cucina. Photo: Becky Stein / Special

OUR PICKS

1) La Pietra Cucina

Dining critic Meridith Ford Goldman says, “Unexpected and totally satisfying, La Pietra Cucina is possibly the most authentic Italian restaurant in the area. Chef Bruce Logue has a deep understanding of Italian cuisine, but his interpretation is his own.”

2) Sotto Sotto

3) Antica Posta

4) Antico Pizza Napoletana

5) La Tavola Trattoria

384 comments Add your comment

Jeff

January 5th, 2010
1:54 pm

“While the chain restaurants serve a purpose for the unimaginative strip-mall crowd, the spirit of this survey is to identify a best restaurant, singular (i.e. A chef or location).”

“Then again, when you see Scalini’s and Provino’s and Maggiano’s, I guess these same posters would say Domino’s has the best pizza.”

At one point in time, Provino’s was not a chain but a single restaurant on Memorial Drive in Stone Mountain. I started eating there when I was about 4 or 5 and it was not a chain. If a restaurant is good enough to become successful over the years and becomes a “chain”, that’s not a discredit but rather a testament that for over 30 years people have been enjoying their food enough to open more restaurants. A big corporate chain is not the same as a small locally owned restaurant becoming successful. Just like the Mellow Mushroom used to have one small restaurant near GT and now has restaurants all over the southeast. It’s because it’s good.

Love me some Figo

January 5th, 2010
1:56 pm

I’m shocked by all the chain restaurants…Figo Pasta is by far the best and freshest.

J

January 5th, 2010
1:57 pm

Lucia’s in Roswell. Homemade Ravioli after the pear and walnut salad and herb butter on hot fresh bread. Mmmmm. I’m hungry.

Ricky Lee

January 5th, 2010
1:59 pm

Franco’s on corner of Piedmont and Cheshire Bridge.

The Arrabiata is to die for.

mission man

January 5th, 2010
1:59 pm

Canton? Acworth? Sugarloaf? Why not list restaurants in Chattanooga and Greenville. I realize people use “Atlanta” interchangeably with the suburbs, but let’s try to keep within a roundtrip dinner drive from Atlanta.

mission man

January 5th, 2010
2:00 pm

Doesn’t Figo have like 4 or 5 locations? What is the cutoff for “chain restaurants?”

KMM

January 5th, 2010
2:02 pm

Bambellini’s in Tucker? I have wanted to like it – a local, mom and pop Italian place. But the food is bland and overpriced, and frankly, the owner creeps me out. Stick to Aldo’s if you want Italian in Tucker.

mission man

January 5th, 2010
2:05 pm

It’s strange to me. Most of the suburbs have their best of guides: Best of Gwinnett, Best of Cherokee, Best of Alpharetta, etc… It would seem rather absurd to nominate Alfredos for Best of Alpharetta, but people have no problem nominating some corporate, chain restaurant on Winward Parkway for Best of Atlanta.

george

January 5th, 2010
2:08 pm

Pricci…………….. For the last decade and then some, the top Italian in the city!!!!!

Mr. H

January 5th, 2010
2:09 pm

In no way ever eat at Aldo’s. See my comments on page 1 of this for a better explanation but when the owner flat out tells you he is defrauding you and then gets in your wife’s face about it, you don’t deserve to have your doors open to the public.

This is straight off their menu:
“Stuffed Mushrooms Mushroom caps stuffed with crabmeat stuffing topped with mozzarella, baked. 6.95″

Notice that it says “crabmeat”. There is no crab in this dish and the owner admitted it saying that real crab was too expensive and instead puts imitation crab in this dish without disclosing taking advantage of customers and then refusing to take it off my bill once confronted with it.

I ordered a grouper special and got a little dry tough piece tilapia for almost $20 as well.

STAY VERY VERY VERY FAR AWAY FROM THIS PLACE!!!!! Don’t believe me, go order the stuffed mushrooms and then ask the owner once you have them on the table if it’s real crab meat that you’re eating.

Mama Mia

January 5th, 2010
2:09 pm

Di Gusto’s in Kennesaw – They have the most incredible mussels and their lasagna is awesome!

Rodney

January 5th, 2010
2:11 pm

Il Localino – special place – Alfredo’s and Nino’s are both very good. La Grotta for a change (and to SPEND some change). All are favorites of mine.

TonyT

January 5th, 2010
2:15 pm

Alfredo’s on Cheshire Bridge, easily.

TonyT

January 5th, 2010
2:16 pm

Good call, Rodney- forgot about Il Localino. That place is pretty good.

I still say ALFREDO’S.

JS

January 5th, 2010
2:16 pm

Wow. I can’t believe that no one has said Di Paolo in Alpharetta/Roswell. Best Italian in North Fulton for sure…. I wouldn’t know about Atlanta because why drive downtown when you have better stuff around your house? The menu is even in Italian…good luck pronouncing anything. Creative, quality, fresh seasonal dishes, reasonably priced..not just spag and meatballs.

Did someone really say Feces Pizza? Ewwww…

linzo

January 5th, 2010
2:17 pm

Ecco was pretty awesome.

Steve

January 5th, 2010
2:18 pm

As someone who is part Italian, and grew up with authentic Italian food in the northeast, I would say that Sotto Sotto, Nino’s, Il Localina are some of my favorites.

the chains,well, you might was well call a can of Ragu authentic spaghetti sauce.

Jonas

January 5th, 2010
2:21 pm

Olive Garden in Forsyth county is awesome. Unlimited bread basket and soup. If looking for something more casual (and less price), try the italian lunch buffet at Pizza Hut on exit 24. It’s all you can eat and tastes just like you’re in Italy.

Jim Lesser

January 5th, 2010
2:23 pm

The Maggianos in North Chattanooga is awesome.

Bob from Accounttemps

January 5th, 2010
2:26 pm

Jeff (1:54) – point taken, but as outlets increase in number, quality and individuality often suffer. Same could be said for Carraba’s too, right? Didn’t that start out with just one? “Best”, to me, implies authentic and of the highest quality. Not a “joint” or an American interpretation of Italian food. And, what Italian food? There’s southern, northern, Tuscan and variations on the same. Breading and frying a piece of veal, coating it with cheese and sauce may taste good at any number of places, but it’s not in the same league as Pricci, VVV, Sotto Sotto, Antico Posta, Baroanda and so on. You can get a good pizza at Johnny’s (and and it does taste good), but the pizza at Baroanda is certainly more authentic and, to me, more unique and delicious.

Nathan Moon

January 5th, 2010
2:41 pm

Have lived in the Atlanta area for 7 years now and eaten a LOT of Italian, but it’s still hard to top Scalini’s/Provino’s for traditional Italian and Figo for a more modern spin. Scalini’s makes the most over the top pasta dish known to man, Spinach Tortellini Florentine. Definitely worth a try for those looking for something indulgent. Figo’s raviolis are to die for, and Sandro, who runs the place, is such a trip.

bl

January 5th, 2010
3:04 pm

I’ve been going to Alfredo’s since 1984 or so, and over the last several years it’s gone really downhill. Last time I went there, November 2009, the food was so bad I swore I’d never go back. Just gross.

Sotto Sotto and Veni, Vidi, Vici are the best. Sotto Sotto’s whole roasted fish with olive oil and lemon and VVV’s gnocchi with gorgonzola sauce are dishes I dream about.

Nathan

January 5th, 2010
3:31 pm

I’m beginning to think that AJC should have split this category up into fine Italian and “everyday” Italian (or Italian-American, if some prefer). There seems to be bit of a gulf here between those who favor pasta-based Italian at a casual price point and those preferring fine dining.

Nothing wrong with either, mind you, and both have their merits. But it does seem unfair to compete my favorite everyday spots like Scalini’s and Figo against established powerhouses like Sotto Sotto and Veni, Vidi, Vici, which are rightly recognized and respected.

SusieQue

January 5th, 2010
3:49 pm

Still love Sotto Sotto

Joyce Ann

January 5th, 2010
4:05 pm

Luciano’s in Alpharetta. Wonderful food & always great service.

koko

January 5th, 2010
4:43 pm

La Tavola in the Va. Highlands

Jan Thompson

January 5th, 2010
5:00 pm

La Strada on Johnson Ferry Road/East Cobb

Best marinara sauce and crusty Italian Bread. Owned by former Pricci chef.

'SallyB

January 5th, 2010
5:03 pm

Alfredo’s…Old time restaurant…..old time Italian ambience…Be sure to ask for TONY….The all time best SUPER WAITER!!!!!

'SallyB

January 5th, 2010
5:06 pm

OH…NINO’S, too. ….

'SallyB

January 5th, 2010
5:11 pm

OOPS! Forgot La Grotta!! Fabulous…every time !!!

Bob from Accounttemps

January 5th, 2010
5:24 pm

Nathan (3:31pm): Best is best and no distinction should be made on price or style. That said, in a city that rates Einstein’s as having the best bagels and Moe’s as having the best Mexican, I’m not surprised at the posts here. Folks need to get out more and take advantage of what this metro area now has to offer. I don’t ding these establishments for being chains, I ding them for having simply average food.

Lynn

January 5th, 2010
5:33 pm

My very italian husband (from New York), absolutely LOVES Alfredo’s on Cheshire Bridge Rd. – It’s a hidden treasure! We love it’s wonderful food and atmosphere. Every time we’ve been there it’s been packed, whether weekends or weeknights. We’ve tried Maggiano’s, Provino’s, Olive Garden, Carraba’s and many others. Alfredo’s RULES!

Matthew

January 5th, 2010
5:33 pm

Ippolito’s…… the best rolls EVER…put those little puff ball rolls from Provino’s to shame

TheHill

January 5th, 2010
5:59 pm

We’ve been here for 12 years; we came from St. Louis where they have “The Hill” – an Italian community with tons of little Italian family restaurants. There are no restaurants in Atlanta like that that we have found yet. Provino’s is where we go when we’re desperate for pasta – it’s not that great, but it’s not bad and it’s close. Veni Vidi Vici is where we go when we have a gift card because it’s pricey – especially for pasta. Sotto Sotto has good food but the last time I was there it was loud and snobby. Dominick’s is good in both Norcross and Lawrenceville and is probably the closest to the type of atmosphere in an Italian family restaurant.
1) Veni Vidi Vici
2) Dominick’s
I’m sure there are lots of Italian restaurants we haven’t tried – Alfredo’s sounds interesting, so thanks for your input, everybody!

Gman

January 5th, 2010
6:06 pm

If u dont pick Alfredo’s, u don’t know where it is or have never been there – nothing else comes close for authentic Italian

Christina

January 5th, 2010
6:24 pm

Sugo and Casa Nuova

tom

January 5th, 2010
7:04 pm

“Capri Italian American Cafe” in Tucker

Ocee

January 5th, 2010
7:06 pm

Vengenzio’s in Woodstock. Nothing else is even close.

Pasta Fool

January 5th, 2010
7:14 pm

Sotto Sotto on Highland in Inman Park. Cozy, Charming, Great value and the best service.

82much

January 5th, 2010
7:15 pm

Chianti in Conyers is the best! Their tiramisu is better than any I’ve ever had in Italy or in NYC (and I’ve had plenty). Of course, it may be a shock to the AJC that there actually are restaurants outside the perimeter on the east side of town!

Hendu

January 5th, 2010
7:32 pm

Alfredo’s. All male staff. When is the last time a man messed anything up?

A

January 5th, 2010
7:36 pm

Sotto Sotto is by far the most authentic and La Pietra Cucina is by far the most creative. Both are tied for my personal #1 favorite.

Rectal Bleeding

January 5th, 2010
7:43 pm

Ippolito’s is a joke. They serve their wine in juice glasses. It’s crowded and noisy and most of the customers are obese.

I miss Cognitos that was on Piedmont Circle…..

Lorelei

January 5th, 2010
7:51 pm

Antica Postica! Amazing Tuscan restaurant: http://www.anticaposta.com/

P

January 5th, 2010
7:52 pm

Nino’s, Napoli’s, Ciao Bella, but my favorite was Dominicks in Rome….Italy

Michael

January 5th, 2010
7:53 pm

Alfredos on Cheshire Bridge

Dixie

January 5th, 2010
7:55 pm

Alfredo’s followed by Bambinelli’s! If you go to a chain for Italian you had might as well just open a jar of Ragu.

Justmy2cents

January 5th, 2010
8:16 pm

Vincent’s or Di Gusto…I find all the ones adding the “I’m Italian, or my spouse is Italian” comments amusing…just because you may be Italian, doesn’t mean you have good taste :o )

Luciano

January 5th, 2010
8:23 pm

I’m originally from Buffalo, lot’s of Italians there, and my Brother In-Law is 1/4 Italian. If you want true Italiano style Italian food, it’s hard to beat the Ippolito’s in Snellville.

I Love Italian

January 5th, 2010
8:25 pm

Not sure if they are still there, but Capri that was over in the Norcross/Tucker area. Mom, Pop and the kids (specifically, I remember Joseph). They were AWESOME! Mama made the best tirimisu, and Pop the best cream of mushroom soup. Yummy!