The Best Italian Restaurants in Southern California
LOS ANGELES, Sept. 18, 2007 (KABC-TV) (KABC) -- Pizza, pasta, proscuitto?
When it comes to Italian food, the menu can be endless.
There are a lot of Italian restaurants around Southern California, but only a select few can earn a spot on the top seven.
Italian is always a favorite, no matter how old you are, and the top seven restaurants in Southern California cater to just about everyone and every price bracket.
The much anticipated opening of Osteria Mozza from celebrity chef Mario Batali has been worth the wait.
"As one Citysearch reader put it, this restaurant has knocked the Italian dining scene in Los Angeles on its head, it is amazing," says Tara de Lis, Citysearch.
Reservations are taken a month out for the beef tagliata, the ear pasta with sausage and swiss chard, and the whole roasted orata.
"You tend to see that a lot in Italy, where they like to wrap things in either fig leaf or grape leaf, and I thought it would be a great way to showcase a fish," says Matt Molina, Executive Chef of Osteria Mozza.
No reservation? You might be able to grab a seat at the mozzarella bar and watch restaurateur Nancy Silverton in action.
You only have to go as far as Il Grano in West L.A. for great Italian.
"This is the, one of the top Italian restaurants in Los Angeles for seafood," says Tara de Lis, Citysearch. "Chef Sal Marino is known for his nightly crudités specials, which are sashimi-like slivers of fish. There's also excellent pasta dishes."
Angeli Café serves up Italian in a casual setting.
"An unpretentious environment with really good food that's simple, that everybody can enjoy, at a price people can actually afford to go more than once every six months," says Evan Kleiman, Angeli Café.
"It's great, it's comfortable, it's affordable, it's kid friendly," says Tara de Lis, Citysearch. "Yet the food is rustic and interesting, I mean, you get dishes like gnocchi made with ricotta instead of potatoes, rosemary chicken, your fish stew. Really delicious."
Valentino in Santa Monica celebrates its 35th year in December.
"We're still around because we love what we do," says Piero Selvaggio, Owner of Valentino. "We're still around because people love us. But, in terms of food, we really had to kind of re-invent what Italian food perception was."
"It's a big favorite for special occasions, anniversaries, birthdays, a great place to bring people from out of town and impress them," says Tara de Lis, Citysearch.
Impress your friends with starters like the culatello, or "king of proscuitto," roasted veal, and a porcini mushroom tortino. Entrees include the candlestick pasta and veal cheeks. Make sure to leave some room for a traditional cannoli or decadent gianduja.
Rounding out the Citysearch top 7 Italian restaurants are La Dolce Vita, Angelini Osteria, and La Sosta Enoteca.
In Orange County, check out Antonello in Santa Ana.
And in the Inland Empire, head to Mario's Place in Riverside for some tasty Italian food.
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