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[DFW] Best traditional Italian food?

I have a dilemma - I hope you Chowhounds can help!

My grandparents are coming into town from California. Their favorite food is Italian, but every place I've tried to bring them in the past few years has been too eclectic for them.

Ideally, I'd like to find a place that's quiet, and has all the old standards (MUST have Veal) - but very well done, and VERY attentive service (My grandmother will be much more accepting of a restaurant if she is treated like a queen).

I'd like it to be a bit fancier than "Two Guys from Italy", but I don't want to break the bank either since this will be a large group (so no Bice). I'm open to a chain as long as it's good.

They used to love Il Sorrento, so if there are any places similar, that would be ideal.

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  1. Do you have a location preference? What about Sweet Basil in far north Dallas, Midway @ Trinity Mills? I've eaten there a couple of times, service is very polite and it has a bit of an old fashioned feel.

    You can see a menu on their website: http://www.sweetbasilitalian.com/

    1 Reply
    1. re: donnaaries

      My father is in Plano and I live around the 35/Oaklawn area - so anywhere around or between the two areas will work.

      I checked out the Sweet Basil website - they look a bit too casual for the occasion.

    2. What about Daniele on Oak Lawn? Its a very pretty restaurant and they are extremely attentive. I would suggest trying to look them up on here. They have some good reviews.

      1 Reply
      1. re: simply_victoria

        I've considered Daniele - mainly because I'd like to try it. I checked the menu - it's too far removed from the Italian that they would expect. Also, the prices are a bit too high for this occasion.

      2. Being part Italian myslef hasn't helped me much in finding Dallas restos like you describe but here goes:

        I haven't been to this place yet but I've read nothing but good things about it and it's run by someone who knows what he's doing.
        Alessio's il Ristorante
        4801 Bryan St
        214-824-2200

        Good food and service in a nice room. It plays to the Parkie crowd and has been in business for a long time, always a good sign.
        Il Sole
        4514 Travis St., Suite 201
        214-559-3888

        I've not been to this place but it looks like it's got potential.
        Grotto Ristorante
        2222 McKinney Ave
        214-954-4461

        Never had a bad meal here and the service has always been good but it can be busy and a little noisy.
        Penne Pomodoro
        11661 Preston Road
        214-368-3100

        Been here twice recently and it's still a good dining experience with that Lower Greenville vibe.
        Terilli's Restaurant
        2815 Greenville Ave
        214-827-3993

        Places to avoid: Buca di Peppo, Cafe Italia, Campisi's, Carrabba's, Dolce Oliva, Nero's, Prego

        3 Replies
        1. re: Scagnetti

          I would avoid the Grotto. It is an Italian version of Landry's Seafood. Out of the previous selections I would choose Alessio's. The others are very ordinary. What about Acadoro Pomodoro, Taverna or Adelmo's?

          1. re: sl1

            What did you eat when you went to Grotto and what did you not like about it?

            The OP IS looking for ORDINARY (not mediocre) Italian food and if they loved Il Sorrento, they certainly wouldn't have a problem with the places I suggested, especially Il Sole.

            1. re: Scagnetti

              Definitely agree to avoiding Campisi's, I think it's quite overpriced too.

              What do you guys think about Siciliano's in Richardson? It's on Buckingham and Shiloh.

        2. Bellini's, on congress right off oak lawn, has all of the things you need. once you get past the exterior, it's quite nice. haven't been there in a couple of years, but as i recall, they make their own complimentary house garlic bread.

          http://www.guidelive.com/portal/page?...

          1. I've had some excellent meals at Ferrari's in Addison: http://www.ferrarisrestaurant.com/

            And the service has always been friendly. I even got to hang out in the kitchen once!

            1 Reply
            1. re: Raynickben

              Yes, a bit north, but good one RNB.

              TT