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cat_snipe t1_j1jxc8x wrote

If you're in SE Connecticut, you can't beat Paul's Pasta for quality and price.


Mutts_Merlot t1_j1kdgkl wrote

You walk in and think... really? This is the place people rave about? And then you shove that carby goodness in your face and you get it.


wholepailofwater t1_j1m0i5z wrote

But for a true Italian experience, Tony D's in New London. Gold standard. Period.


D1a1s1 t1_j1ni8gw wrote

I’ve tried to like Paul’s. Every 5-10 years I go because someone wants to go and it never changes. Good pasta but the red sauce is straight bland. Store bought Raos is better.


redarrow3303 t1_j1knki4 wrote

Funnily enough I just went to this place. I was kind of disappointed with the pasta. I got their spaghetti and meatballs and it seemed really rubbery and not very good. Is that just how homemade pasta is supposed to taste and i’m uncultured?


cat_snipe t1_j1kt6lx wrote

Everybody can have an off day. I've been there many times, and I've stopped in for fresh pasta to go several times. I've never been disappointed.


Guzzy41 t1_j1kyyy3 wrote

Pretty good food i agree, but worst service ive ever experienced multiple times, i refuse to go there because of it


itsmuddy t1_j1l560x wrote

So damn good. I think it’s the only place I go to where I struggle to choose what I want. So many good options that I just love.


justadudenameddave t1_j1k0jyl wrote

Olive Garden hands down, or Sbarro


Daviddoesnotexist t1_j1kw8b8 wrote

Not just any Sbarro tho, you’ve gotta go to the one IN Union Station for the freshest quality ingredients. Like it came out of Nonas kitchen back in the old country 👩‍🍳


marshalltownusa t1_j1mh90k wrote

Ah the Sbarro on the lower level of New Haven’s Union Station is like taking a step into Naples. Best pizza in New Haven imo.


justadudenameddave t1_j1mhd0k wrote

You haven’t had Sbarro until you had the one at the rest stops on the way to JFK in Fairfield


IGameOnMac t1_j208svt wrote

Finest of Italian Cuisine. Tastes like Naples, Sicily, and a hint of Venice in one.


[deleted] OP t1_j1kwqeb wrote


I will live up to me saying that each of the establishments in this thread has their strengths.

Olive Garden for infinite pasta to satisfy the need for gluttony. I hear the breadsticks are good.

Dominos for when you're stoned and drunk and need pizza delivered from the only place open at 1am.

Looks good. 👍


97andCPW t1_j1kc8rj wrote

Cafe Silvium in Stamford


futbol11011 t1_j1lhzyz wrote

100% agree. moved from stamford to stratford a couple of years ago. miss the flexibility to just pop in there on a weeknight and hope for a table!

ETA: A Vucchella in Bridgeport is also wonderful. it’s our fill in for Cafe Silvium when we want amazing italian without risking an hour of traffic.


sarahgracee t1_j1myruq wrote

Came to post this! I can’t speak for most of the rest of CT but cafe silvium is the best restaurant in Fairfield IMO


poorlywrittenriffs t1_j1jvul4 wrote

Adriana’s in New Haven is a great family style place. One other one that I’ve enjoyed but haven’t heard it come up in conversations is Consiglio’s in New Haven as well.


lublinj2 t1_j1kk8ix wrote

Me and my fiancés favorite is Consiglio’s. Food is amazing


Nhpeach67 t1_j1k6d6i wrote

La Tavola in Waterbury


amw05006 t1_j1lzzw2 wrote

I’ve been meaning to try them, always have a collection of absurdly out of place cars considering the neighborhood


Cockydjinn t1_j1jzeal wrote

Roma’s , Watertown. There’s Roma’s and then everyone else


pm_me_cool_plants t1_j1kae8b wrote

I'd rather Carlitos in woodbury. Romas was great a few years back.


DynastyFan85 t1_j1l1bk7 wrote

Was unimpressed with Carlito’s. I prefer Antonio’s in Beacon Falls


pm_me_cool_plants t1_j1m3hx9 wrote

I will try Antonio's this Wednesday! Merry Christmas!


DynastyFan85 t1_j1mn9c9 wrote

You can’t go wrong with any of their dishes. Their Lobster Baked Penne is to die for. I’ve never had a bad meal here. The lady who runs the place is really great.


oldbigbones t1_j1kam8c wrote

Skappo - the grandmother in the back literally comes out and thanks you for coming


Lyrehctoo t1_j1ks516 wrote

That reminds me of Marino's in Middletown. You would walk right into the kitchen to pick up your order from a little old Italian grandma. It closed ages ago and the family tried reopening sometime in the last few years but it didn't compare.


Academic-One-9135 t1_j1kttwo wrote

I almost forgot about that place. Their parmigiana’s were the best


MikeCass84 t1_j1kwdop wrote

You know they came back maybe 2 years ago, but did not last that long in Middletown.


CompasslessPigeon t1_j1kp5tx wrote

Yep. Know the owners, great people. Great food. Never had a bad meal there


Kleveryo t1_j1krmlu wrote

Cafe silvium and it’s not close


Lower-Blackberry-716 t1_j1k4zei wrote

La Marea in Old Saybrook


Diego1107 t1_j1k8k34 wrote

The best I’ve had is between Cantina Cafe Ristorante in Middletown (small family style) and Brazi’s in New Haven. Although there’s definitely not a shortage of great Italian restaurants in CT.


Aves44 t1_j1kad09 wrote

Love Cantina. Food is amazing


jmt258 t1_j1kee5l wrote

I’m surprised not to see mention of Tony D’s in New London. Traditional Italian dishes executed at a very high level. I shouldn’t go there anymore I usually eat enough to injure myself.


SamuraiPanda19 t1_j1kbjm7 wrote

Not the best, but Log Cabin in Clinton definitely gives you the most


sld06003 t1_j1kblhq wrote

My mom's house!! Obviously! Jk.

saw Adriana's... that's really good. Luce in Hamden. Pellicci's in Stamford. We were really disappointed by Goodfellas in new haven, a lot of people do like it.


cjinct t1_j1kc62a wrote

Check out DeNovellis in Rocky Hill and Portofino's in Kensington


MoooooveOva t1_j1ke8qy wrote

Portofinos definite hit or miss over the years


SixToesLeftFoot t1_j1ls1y2 wrote

As of late, closer to the miss. Sadly too, as it was spot on for a while.


noced t1_j1jr067 wrote

Trattoria de Lepri in Ellington


Mutts_Merlot t1_j1kdkr7 wrote

Yes!! This place flies under the radar but is excellent.


goofy_grape62 t1_j1lmqti wrote

I live nearby and frequented Cafe de Lepri many times with friends. Great place.


TarbenXsi t1_j1kobl7 wrote

For "Drop in and Take Out" kind of food - Liuzzi's in North Haven. They not only have an amazing deli counter, but sell all kinds of prepared foods as well as basically any ingredient a good Italian home cook needs.


Anthony_Succtano t1_j1kk50l wrote

Zeneli’s on Wooster St. in New Haven is probably the closest to authentic Italian in Southwestern CT. The brothers who own the place are from Napoli. The menu is pretty small and the portions are more in-line with European dining. They mainly have pasta and personal pizzas.


Guy_Buttersnaps t1_j1kmaqe wrote

Didn’t realize they had anything besides pizza. I’ll have to check them out for pasta some time.


zgrizz t1_j1jlbb6 wrote

Fine dining? Carbone's (Prime, with the main restaurant closed. Kitchen for still authentic less formal)


HockeyandTrauma t1_j1keu5n wrote

Materia in bantam, and like 6 places in New haven.


updownsidewayz t1_j1km0q4 wrote

"best italian food" is always debateable, what are you looking for? casual sit down? date night place? fancy/trendy? any particular regional food because northern and southern italian varies quite a bit... anyway I see a lot of great places already suggested so I'll throw out a dark horse, Zina's Cucina in marlborough, maybe not the absolute best in ct but great for the area


eclectictooth t1_j1l3xxl wrote

I feel like I just recommended this place in another thread, but Gepetto's Osteria in Torrington. Absolutely worth the drive if you're anywhere near Litchfield county


LloydChristmas666666 t1_j1jqe7h wrote

Carbines prime is great but it’s more of a steakhouse feel/menu. The scallop risotto is 🔥. Salute in hartford is also good but I haven’t been there in a while.


Academic-One-9135 t1_j1kudtz wrote

Salute is a great place and I love to support the owner. Jimmy’s one of the nicest guys in the business.


[deleted] OP t1_j1kwvg4 wrote

Love both Salute & Carbone's Prime. Great places.


austinin4 t1_j1ke8xi wrote

Bruin appetito in canton is low key amaze balls. You’d never expect it given the vibe of the place and part of the state.


updownsidewayz t1_j1klfud wrote

buon appetito is pretty good, wouldn't say the best italian in ct, maybe avon/simsbury/canton area, the menu is a bit odd and outdated though believe food is made-to-order; chef-owner Hoa was head chef at Hot Tomatoes in hartford until it shut down around 2013ish


sharipep t1_j1kosvh wrote

Mario the baker in Stamford ❤️


Academic-One-9135 t1_j1kum8l wrote

I used to love Carbone’s in Hartford. I was sad to see that they closed


therealdrfierce t1_j1lw9td wrote

When I was in high school my mom used to take me for a special dinner once a year. (Late 80ss early 90s). Great memories. Don’t remember the name of the fish but would always get the chicken with hot peppers.


TaifighterCT t1_j1mwz1y wrote

They have one in Bloomfield. Went for a repast, loved it!!


Scubalou83 t1_j1kf42s wrote

San Marino in Waterbury is my favorite.


handsomedevil1972 t1_j1kntm3 wrote

The Venetian in Torrington. Best veal ever!!! 👍👍👍


Bravely_Default t1_j1kt666 wrote

Zaza in Stamford or Amici's in Shelton for a restaurant.

A&S in Fairfield or Gaetanos in Stratford for a deli.


Jackers83 t1_j1m1dos wrote

Amichis, ya not bad. I liked their food.


murdermaro98 t1_j1kf8ez wrote

Restaurant de Sophia in Stratford OR amicis in Shelton


Jackers83 t1_j1m1n3x wrote

Where is De Sophia?? In Stratford. Thanks


murdermaro98 t1_j1mjv0i wrote

1479 Barnum Ave. small old school/classy family owned place. Haven’t had a bad meal from there yet


Jackers83 t1_j1ne7ez wrote

Oh awesome. I deliver mail in town there. I’ll have to check it out. Thanks.


ITeachMunchkins t1_j1kwkzx wrote

I’m sure not many people have heard of it, but Italia in Norwalk is fantastic! The prices are reasonable and you get a good amount of food. It’s my favorite Italian restaurant. It is also fairly close to the Merritt Parkway and is easy to get to. The only downside is parking can be a challenge.


HawkDesigner8128 t1_j1lvmui wrote

I think I was there years ago if it’s the one that’s in a strip mall of sorts? If so, I absolutely loved their chicken Marsala which was in a red sauce. Every time I went back I’d order the same thing.


Daviddoesnotexist t1_j1kx0bo wrote

So depends what defines best for you. A lot of what you’ll find in CT is more Italian-American red sauce joints, or stuff reminiscent of what you’d find in Italy in like the 70s. I can’t speak to ALL of CT, just New Haven - but some of the more truly authentic spots here are Skappo, L’Orcio, and Pasta Eataliana (my least favorite of the three though).

Nothing wrong with a red sauce joint, and the ones people have listed are all delicious (I think for me it’s Consiglio’s in that category)


MundaneLavishness716 t1_j1kz1g8 wrote

Gabriels in Westport and Valbella in Greenwich for upscale fare, both have some very good food. I did 5 years in Boston eating North End and 6 years living in Manhattan and Staten Island so have had some legit Italian and its pretty easy to duplicate if you have a little cooking skill, good ingredients, and a few recipes to guide you initially. I like the Hazan books, you can make some restaurant quality stuff with their recipes, then adapt them to what you like. A lot of places in CT you are getting overcooked pasta with watery sauce, even the above mentions miss the mark sometimes but Ive had some dishes from them worth learning to make. TLDR Italian is not hard learn to cook it yourself.


Nexrender t1_j1luvnb wrote

Olive Garden in Waterford! Unlimited soup, salad, and breadsticks?! AND I don’t have to get my colon prep from CVS? Sign me up! I feel like family already!



Prestigious_Series28 t1_j1m569y wrote

It’s Bricco in West Hartford. check the Connecticut restaurant association website… or New York Times review…


artemia26 t1_j1kkdgw wrote

Tarantino in Westport


littleA1xo t1_j1l0881 wrote

mancuso’s in fairfield is reaaaally good


wossquee t1_j1l1h1k wrote

Strega in Milford is really, really, really good. I love their Neapolitan pizza, it's some of the best I've ever had. The pesto lasagna was amazing too.


skybro1996 t1_j1lv2s6 wrote

Pagliacci’s in Plainville! My favorite in the area


Breezy0587 t1_j1lyrzd wrote

Ciao ristorante in Thomaston is top notch!!


caring_impaired t1_j1m13gx wrote

I like 'A Vucchella in Bridgeport and Skappo in New Haven


Jackers83 t1_j1m1w0t wrote

Is Nina Tratorria still open in Waterbury?? Delicious.


EditBayFive t1_j1kae7c wrote

Antonio’s in North Haven. Their lasagna is my favorite.


CompasslessPigeon t1_j1kpcee wrote

Skappo, consiglios, goodfellas, and tre scalini all get lots of recognition around New Haven. L’Orcia is supposed to be great too but I haven’t been to attest to that yet.


Joggingmusic t1_j1m1hob wrote

Pagliaccis in plainville for folks who live in central CT.


Justfuru t1_j1m3vhj wrote

il Pomod'Oro Restaurant & Pizzeria in East Lyme. Go back to it again and again.


curbthemeplays t1_j1mdy8m wrote

Old school red sauce joints: Biagetti’s in West Haven, Tutti’s in Westport, River Street in Milford.

More upscale/authentic: L’Orcio and Pasta Eatalia in New Haven. Strega in Milford. Grano Arso in Chester. Biagio’s in Stratford.

Deli’s: Gaetano’s, Strega Market, Provenzano’s, Nica’s


Loophac t1_j1miy11 wrote

Ria’s in Waterbury is my new fave.


ctannr t1_j1n77ux wrote

when i lived in rural CT, i found a few decent italian joints....i'm sure they're not heavy hitters but they were definitely delicious:

Portofino's (NB/Berlin).
Amici's, Maxamilla (Avon).
First & Last (multiple locations).
Pizza: Angelina's, Luna's (WH).


mrnyeah t1_j1oi2hu wrote

Adrianna’s in New Haven is tasty


jweb1015 t1_j1ozijh wrote

olive garden is always solid and several locations scattered around ct


Genevieve_Brock t1_j1q3fcr wrote

Cafe Bravo in New Haven. Fresh pasta daily and their gnocchi is to die for


lostskier t1_j1qd28n wrote

Quite expensive and fancy but it's called Il Palio Restaurant in Shelton which is a southern town. Very nice area so don't worry about getting shot because Shelton borders Bridgeport. Delicious food for nights out.


Imaginary_Anxiety875 t1_j1qx3ol wrote

Good fellas New Haven!! Latovala Waterbury!! Damelios Waterbury!!


jweb1015 t1_j1sa35q wrote

cugino’s or viron rondo


DCFATKID t1_j1wrcrc wrote

The pasta primavera at domino’s is the best in the state


[deleted] OP t1_j1l902z wrote



redcapmilk t1_j1l4wfw wrote

Do you mean Italian or Italian American, because Italian American is trash.


asspirate420 t1_j1kdphq wrote

Homemade, go to stop and shop, you yourself some store brand macaroni and some jarred sauce and then ask the butcher for his finest cut of gabagool, mix all that shit up on the stove and add some mozzarelli cheese and bobs you’re uncle


[deleted] OP t1_j1ky67m wrote

But if you're doing homemade.. do it good. It's worth being able to cook good.

Get yourself a can of san marzano whole tomatoes (28oz, big can . Reccomend Cento. )

1 pack of your favorite spaghetti ( If you don't have a favorite - Barilla or an imported Italian brand. )

1 whole pack of bacon, diced (1cm)

1 onion ( I like adding onion and garlic, but it's not necessary. )

2-3 cloves of garlic , crushed with the flat of a knife

1 cup of shredded italian cheese blend ( Mozz, Parm, Romano, Provalone or whatever you like. Needs Parm though. )

Olive Oil


Red Pepper


Start up salted water for your pasta.

Dice the bacon. Chop the onion into about 1cm pieces. Crush the tomatoes in a bowl with your hands (FFS don't use a goddamn blender). Mince the garlic.

Fry up the bacon in a sautee pan with plenty of olive oil till the fat renders. Throw in the onions. Fry them up until they start to brown. Throw in the garlic when the onion's browned, cook for about 30s. Dump the tomatoes in the bacon/onion mix. Season with Salt, Red Pepper to taste. Add the cheese. Turn down low.

When the water boils - Cook the spaghetti for 2 minutes UNDER the cook time.

Scoop out a laidle of water from your spaghetti pot. Drain the pasta, return to pot, add water back in. Dump all the the sauce in the pasta, stir good, warm it for about 2 minutes.

Eat like you're in effin Rome and enjoy it!

( Or just do this: )


googs185 t1_j1kozts wrote

My house!

In all seriousness, though, all the Italian food in the US is really Americanized (although I guess this goes for every international cuisine), even the restaurants owned by actual Italians (most are not). Even the high-end ones that everyone just HAS to get a reservation for.

They cater to the American palate-such as putting cream in Carbonara (an absolute no-no in Italy, but Amercans love cream!). Alfredo is not Italian (another creamy dish). Italians NEVER, EVER eat spaghetti with meatballs (or any type of meat with pasta-they are separate courses).

Italian is arguably the most common cuisine available, but nothing beats a home-cooked meal made the real way. Go to Italy and taste the difference.

Source: am Italian.


Mutts_Merlot t1_j1kwlt5 wrote

Carbonara is egg. That's it. Restaurants in Boston's North End have received that message but few places in CT have followed suit.


googs185 t1_j1m2gv0 wrote

Yes, egg yolk! There is no cream in carbonara.


Jackers83 t1_j1m1lj2 wrote

It’s finished with a some egg yolk, tempered into the cream. Sure


googs185 t1_j1m2k04 wrote

Carbonara does NOT call for cream. That was an addition to appease American palates. The egg yolk is carefully cooked lightly so it doesn’t cook enough to become like scrambled eggs, then pecorino, salt and pepper. That’s it. No cream to speak of.


Jackers83 t1_j1m6gn5 wrote

It’s just modernized with some cream. I understand traditional recipes, but some things are better over time.


googs185 t1_j1meyz1 wrote

It’s Americanized. Any Italian chef wouldn’t dream of putting cream in carbonara. Tradition is extremely important. The cream overtakes the delicate flavor. But hey, if you like cream in your Olive Garden carbonara, go for it.


Jackers83 t1_j1nlpju wrote

Lolls. Olive Garden. Nice dude. I’m sure you’ve made your bones working every position in a commercial restaurant. I hear the “Good Housekeeping “ had some fire recipes. Good luck.


googs185 t1_j1oraql wrote

I’m Italian. As in an Italian citizen. Eaten at countless restaurants on Italy. Never claimed to be a chef but I know how good is made there.


Jackers83 t1_j1orf9k wrote

That’s wonderful. Good food is great, and is interpreted differently.


kashmir_stg t1_j1jp2jk wrote

Cruelty free….

Three Girls Vegan in Guilford


B6304T4 t1_j1ke03k wrote

Since you provided an answer to a question nobody asked, do you have an option for a good veal parmagiana, preferably maximum cruelty if at all possible?