Del Mar >Il Fornaio - Del Mar
San Diego this is the best italian you can get!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. A good friend of mine had been talking about this place for the longest time. So last night my wife and I tried it out. Wow that's what I have to say. From the moment we got there it was great. We were welcomed the moment we walked in and seated with in minutes on a friday night!!! It was only 6 but still we got a table with a view thats out for this world with no reservation. The server was very friendly and suggested the tasting menu that we had. My wife also got the wine tasting and myself an Italian soda. We both started with the mushroom soup that was so good. next come the pasta I got the ravioli filled with a spinach and cheese mix in a sage cream sauce and my wife the fettucini with scallops, shrimp, tomatoes, arugula and crab. Both were crazy good and the server told us that all the pasta was made there. I tell you, this is the place. Oh, I can't believe I didn't start with this. The bread, what bread, I dare anyone to find better bread around here! I'm telling you, you can't. Now we are at the main course. We both had this rolled chicken breast with fontia cheese and proscuitto in it. they topped it with butter, sage and balsamic. I would have never thought that it would work with the balsamic but man was it good. All this and the chef cameout and talked to us about the dishes and then brought us a tiramisu on him. All in all a night we will not forget and for under $100. We have found our new home for Italian food and strongly suggest that if you want a great night, great food and friendly people( AND YOU DON'T WANT TO BE ROBBED) this is the place.
Excellent food, Ok service..
A little background on my tastes: Neither my girlfriend or I are heavy restaurant people. We rarely go to upscale restaurants. We prefer simpler, family style places or cooking at home. That being said we had a very nice time at Il Fornaio and would definitely return.
The wait for a table was about ordinary, especially for such a busy night ( there was a party or some such in the patio area). We arrived at 7:30, our reservation was for 8pm, and we were seated at about 8:10.
I can't remember the exact dishes we ordered, but I'll try to describe it as best I can. She had Ravioli Alla Lucana, a spinach stuffed Ravioli dish while I had Conchiglie al Pollo, a seashell pasta with chicken. Both were excellent, but we agreed that the Seashell pasta was the better of the two. For drinks she had a Cosmopolitan and I had a cup of white wine. She enjoyed the cosmo, and got another. I'm not a big wine drinker so I had our waiter recommend something. After dinner we shared Crema al Doppio Gusto,a chocolate and custard dessert. This was excellent as well.
The service was pretty slow. We were there a total of 2 full hours, from seating to leaving. Almost 45 minutes of that was waiting for some part of the meal. I believe 30 minutes of that waiting should have been avoided. I understand that there was a big party that night, and that this may not have been normal for this restaurant.
All in all, I would recommend Il Fornaio for diners who prefer a relaxed atmosphere, and want a place they can take their time and enjoy their meal.
The menu is straight from Italy, but the panoramic views of the ocean are so California..
Tall ceilings and the warmth and aromas from the open kitchen characterize the space as soon as you enter the front door. Make your way into the main dining room, and the stunning view of the skyline cannot be overstated. the kitchen bustles--chicken on rotisseries, garlic sizzling--but the atmosphere remains quiet, candlelit and romantic. An elaborate bread basket is plenty to tide you over until one the many hearty, traditional Italian entrees arrive.
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