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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

illocalino_photo04Photo: Michelle Bentley

YOUR PICKS
1. Il Localino
You say, “It’s a tough call, but if I look at the place that makes me consistently happy – I’m leaving with a smile and a memory or two – it HAS to be Il Localino in Inman Park. Really good food – it’s not inventive star-chef nuevo-Italian cuisine, it’s the traditional favorites with a dash of inspiration, great ingredients and technical flair – a fun atmosphere, and AMAZING service. The ‘Italian family’ part is totally true – I can’t think of another restaurant I’ve been to where I’ve gotten hugs on the way out. Il Localino is an *experience* far beyond the ken of really just about any other restaurant in town. So, the choice (for me) is easy: Il Localino is Atlanta’s best Italian restaurant.”

2. Sotto Sotto
3. La Grotta
4. di Paolo
5. Pricci
6. La Tavola

dine.0822Sotto Sotto’s Risotto al Funghi (Carnaroli rice, wild mushrooms and Parmigiano Reggiano) is one of many warm, inviting dishes at our choice for best Italian resataurant in and around Atlanta. Photo: Becky Stein / Special

OUR PICKS
1. Sotto Sotto
Chief Dining Critic John Kessler says, “The kitchen remains so remarkably consistent. I know the bufula mozzarella with roasted peppers, anchovies and capers will give me that ‘hello, old friend’ feeling every time because the mozzarella will be milk-oozy fresh and just cold enough to soften on the tongue. That seafood risotto — lush with tender shrimp, scallops, calamari and mussels — finds a place in my heart every time. The Italian wine list remains terrific, and the staff really knows where to steer you, whether you need a glass or a bottle. Yeah, it’s a little loud. Even after owner Riccardo Ullio installed sound-absorption panels however many years ago. But you know what? This is a restaurant worth shouting about.”

2. Vingenzo’s
3. Antico Pizza Napoletana
4. Varasano’s
5. No. 246

137 comments Add your comment

Ramsey

June 19th, 2012
4:08 pm

At my house!

(i hate myself for doing it)

Doug

June 19th, 2012
4:20 pm

Best Italian in Atlanta…di Paolo. No contest.

GaPeachy

June 19th, 2012
4:29 pm

Ok so Italian is my absolute favorite!!
For pizza Piu Bello is amazing and the crust is actually handmade. (Buckhead Kroger plaza)
Best Italian restaurant is Portifino hands down! I had the best Gnocchi i ever ate in my life there, they were liek little pillows, mmmm. (Buckhead, off West Paces Ferry)
2nd for me is Vini Vidi Vici (Midtown)

Baltisraul

June 19th, 2012
4:47 pm

johnny……Chuckie Cheese was a good suggestion, afraid it won’t get many votes. The dancing chef’s are good, nice call!!!!!!!!!!!!

Loren Campania

June 19th, 2012
4:52 pm

Absolutely di Paolo on Holcomb Bridge! Fantastically fresh and amazing wines.

Brenda

June 19th, 2012
4:57 pm

Without exception, diPaolo is the best. From the 4 cheese pizza to the fish and pasta dishes.

Tina

June 19th, 2012
5:46 pm

Di Paolo is the absolute best Italian in Atlanta. One of Atlanta’s best kept secrets until now. I have sent several friends to Di Paolo and everyone loves it just as much as we do!!! I highly recommend it!

Nikka

June 19th, 2012
5:50 pm

Favorite Italian restaurant, hands down is diPaolo on Holcomb Bridge. Consistently awesome, freshly prepared food, great wine list and service.

Marti Vogt

June 19th, 2012
6:07 pm

It is DiPaolo’s all the way. Great service, awesome food and desserts. The half portion idea is great for small eaters. Best buy for the buck! Top notch!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JRL

June 19th, 2012
6:13 pm

Only the best for the best! di Paolo is consistently the best Italian around. There is absolutely no question.

LAB

June 19th, 2012
6:18 pm

di Paolo’s is the best par none!

Christie Fouts

June 19th, 2012
6:19 pm

BobS

June 19th, 2012
6:24 pm

DiPaolo has the best food and service in all around Atlanta. You can never go wrong.

SH

June 19th, 2012
7:03 pm

di Paolo in Alpharetta is a hidden gem. One of the best in town!

Bryan

June 19th, 2012
7:15 pm

Marci

June 19th, 2012
8:16 pm

Without a doubt – di Paolo!

SD

June 19th, 2012
8:55 pm

No question! The best Italian, certainly OTP (and possibly even ITP!) is di Paolo on Holcomb Bridge Road in the Roswell/Alpharetta area.

Matthew Pierce

June 19th, 2012
9:00 pm

GIOVANNI’S in Austell. I know, I didn’t think the best Italian food in the area would be in a small shopping center way west of Atlanta, but it is. Giovanni has been running the restaurant that bears his name for 5 years now in the same location. He is always there and will probably greet and seat you himself. Not only is the food authentic and delicious, but the service is great. They really try to impress every diner every time. You will not be disappointed.

Matt

June 19th, 2012
9:00 pm

No dispute. SOTTO SOTTO. Ricardo Ullio is the sine qua non of Italian cuisine in this city.

Harriette Hall

June 19th, 2012
9:01 pm

k

June 19th, 2012
9:09 pm

We have tried many. No. 246 and Sugo are our faves!

George

June 19th, 2012
9:31 pm

I lived in Europe for 12 years and ate my weight in Italian in several countries/big cities; i.e., northern Italy, Germany, London (England), Amsterdam (Netherlands), etc. Pasta Max Cafe in McDonough, GA gets my vote. Chef Doug Zitz is a wizard with seafood.

tony

June 19th, 2012
9:37 pm

A great new place, FIRENZE on peachtree parkway, great food,Andrea does original italian food with fresh ingredients.It`s worth a try!!!

Big Bob

June 19th, 2012
9:40 pm

Reggie Ball

June 19th, 2012
9:40 pm

Olive Garden, yo!

Irishwop

June 19th, 2012
9:40 pm

OTP fave’s…Caprese’s Hamilton Mill & I 85 , Napoli Flowery Branch Publix & Pizzeria Azzuri Browns Brdge & GA 400…

janet

June 19th, 2012
9:42 pm

The original Sugos in Roswell. Great service, atmosphere and delicious food.

Chuck

June 19th, 2012
9:46 pm

Get ya some stevi b’s pizza Buffett….slice of Italian heaven. Free refills too!

Leeroy

June 19th, 2012
9:53 pm

di Paolo

The first time I ate at di Paolo was with my parents when I was in my teens. It was a life changing experience. I never knew how good pasta could be. One of my formative culinary experiences. Still one of my top five meals ever.

Phar71

June 19th, 2012
10:04 pm

Have not been to Petra cucina since the chef left, but food there was my favorite.

M

June 19th, 2012
10:13 pm

Sotto Sotto is the only authentic Italian restaurant in town. All others are faux Italian or suburban NYC Italian.

techman874

June 19th, 2012
10:13 pm

I like Nino’s a lot.

Not a cynic or anything

June 19th, 2012
10:14 pm

Without a doubt, the employees at di Paolo are the best ballot stuffers

Christine

June 19th, 2012
10:24 pm

I think that the pasta’s are divine. Especially the free form duck lasagne when they have it.

Drew

June 19th, 2012
10:35 pm

Trattoria 141 and 246

Nick

June 19th, 2012
10:41 pm

If you haven’t made the drive to Di Paolo’s, you’re missing out.

Marco

June 19th, 2012
10:46 pm

Poor Atlanta. The Italian food here is basically horrific. Not enough Italians here to make a dent. What passes for good here is crappola in any other major city in the U.S. (and not some major cities).

Susan

June 19th, 2012
11:01 pm

For authentic coastal Italian…in a true family run place that tastes upscale but remains casual….try Amalfi’s in Roswell ( used to be Salvatorres Tratoriatil Sal’s nephews bought in). Named for the Amalfi coast where this family run place has it’s roots. Nothing pre made or bottled he…everything is so fresh! Try the calamari…the anti pasta, the swordfish special, the grouper, the lasagna, the veal saltambuca, the side of cabbage is amazing….the desserts are homemade by the great uncle…chef Anna runs the kitchen….you must try it out….

debbie

June 19th, 2012
11:10 pm

Di Paolo in alpharetta hands down. Worth the trip otp you won’t be disappointed

Mrs. D

June 19th, 2012
11:19 pm

Brio’s in Buckhead

Steve

June 20th, 2012
7:15 am

Hands down Di Paolo in Roswell is the best. Pricci,Sotto,Alfredos-they are all very good
but can’t match the innovative and tasty food served at this little gem off Holcomb Bridge!

Laura

June 20th, 2012
7:23 am

Charles McDowell Jr

June 20th, 2012
8:39 am

di Paolo’s Italian Ristaurant is the BEST. Year in year out, meal after meal the best food service and wine list.

Dyrwlf59

June 20th, 2012
8:47 am

I have dined at La Grotta, La Tavola (although it has been a few years), Sotto Sotto, Pricci and Alfredo’s and in my humble opinion, Di Paolo on Holcomb Bridge is the top choice in town. Their combination of seasonal, fresh ingredients prepared simply, yet executed to technical perfection is the essence of Italian cooking. They also have numerous Wine Spectator Awards of Excellence and their service is always on point. Second place for me has to be Antica Posta in Buckhead on E. Paces Ferry–their grilled Octopus, Risotto and chicken-under-a-brick are spot on and remind me of restuarants I have visited in Tuscan villages like Bagni di Lucca and the Cinque Terra. Sorry, but anyone that nominates any chain restaurant (including BLRG) has simply not been exposed to real italian cooking–believe me, it ain’t always about the tomato sauce and spaghetti.

Dennis

June 20th, 2012
9:12 am

I’ve taken several people there and all rave about it. Outstanding taste sensations.

Pegi

June 20th, 2012
9:19 am

Di Paolo, of course!

Monica Ricci

June 20th, 2012
9:25 am

DiPaolo has been the best Italian in the city for years yet they continue to innovate and raise their own bar. Definitely worth a trip to the ‘burbs!

Giulio

June 20th, 2012
9:54 am

There is no decent Italian restaurant in this city. Take it from someone that was born and lived in Italy most of his life. Italian cuisine is regional and seasonal in nature. It is simple and is based on the greatness of locally grown products. And locally grown products are not the ones you decide to grow because you like them. Locally grown products are the ones that have grown naturally in those places for hundreds of years. I have dined at every italian restaurant in this city, including all the ones mentioned in these reviews like di Paolo (there is nothing Italian about it….come on chicken with pasta? Are you kidding me?), La Grotta (probably the best if I have to choose one) Sotto Sotto Pricci etc. It’s not that the chefs are not talented, but the flavor of the ingredients is just not there. And stop comparing your favorite place to some Tuscan village restaurant. There is no comparison. You either have no taste buds or have never truly tried food in an Italian village.

Do yourself a favor. Stick with the farm to table and southern fare. At least you have a chance.

Anne

June 20th, 2012
9:54 am

La Grotta!!!!

David

June 20th, 2012
11:35 am

It’s a tough call, but if I look at the place that makes me consistently happy – I’m leaving with a smile and a memory or two – it HAS to be Il Localino in Inman Park. Really good food – it’s not inventive star-chef nuevo-Italian cuisine, it’s the traditional favorites with a dash of inspiration, great ingredients and technical flair – a fun atmosphere, and AMAZING service. The “Italian family” part is totally true – I can’t think of another restaurant I’ve been to where I’ve gotten hugs on the way out. Il Localino is an *experience* far beyond the ken of really just about any other restaurant in town. So, the choice (for me) is easy: Il Localino is Atlanta’s best Italian restaurant.