Finding Italian Food

AnniVenti  La Trattoria (courtesy photo)

If you have an endless appetite for Italian food, you don't have to leave San Diego to find delicious bites. The local trattorias have mastered the art of authentic-tasting Italian cuisine, offering some of the tastiest house-made pasta, wood-fired pizza, and delectable antipasto. From family-friendly spots serving up old-fashioned favorites to romantic date night destinations with modern interpretations, you'll find everything you need on our list of the hottest ristorantes in the county.

Located in Hillcrest, the farm-to-neighborhood restaurant RustiCucina offers a unique blend of American and Sicilian cuisine featuring only organic, locally sourced ingredients. With Build Your Own Pasta on the menu, you can add your own twist to the dish by selecting any pasta, sauce, and protein to your taste. Choose the chef's Cheese Wheel Pasta tossed tableside in the 36-month Parmesan cheese wheel, which makes it extra cheesy.

To experience the art of fine Italian dining, head to AnniVenti La Trattoria, located in the sunny city of Lemon Grove. The menu reflects the timeless Sicily flavors combined with contemporary twists that will impress all who come in to dine. Indulge in the delicious symphony of flavors with their gourmet Anniventi pizza made with bufala, porcini mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, arugula, and stuffed pistachio crust. AnniVenti was opened by three brothers, originally from Italy, so the food is as authentic as it gets!

If you're looking for something casual yet elegant, then Giaola Italian Kitchen in Carlsbad’s Bressi Ranch is definitely worth checking out! This North County hotspot from San Diego’s famed Grand Restaurant Group and Executive Chef Amy DiBiase tastefully blends the best elements of classic and fine dining. Taste the Italian love in every bite by indulging in the Caprese Summer Roll (the favorite Italian appetizer sushi style), salads with homemade dressings, and traditional lasagna made with seasoned beef, egg, ricotta, mozzarella, parmesan, and marinara. Pizzas and calzones are also available as you’re transported straight to the heart of Tuscany.

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