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Italian Restaurant Rec in Calgary?

  • k

Hello all! I'm pretty new to the board, but I was wondering if anyone would have a good reccomendation for Italian food. It's for a family gathering, so ambience is a factor. I was hoping for something mid-priced (no Capo's here sadly...). We were originally going to La Brezza, but they're booked out for the evening.
Many thanks!

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  1. Il Chianti on 20 Av NW
    Abruzzo downtown
    Pulcinella in Kensington
    Sandros off Edmonton Trail

      1. For family dining - I would definately reccomend - Buon Giorno Ristorante Italiano
        823 17th Avenue SW.

        1. I personally do not have much good to say about Abruzzo, but I can heartily recommend Da Guido.

          Da Guido!!

          2 Replies
          1. re: formerlyfingers

            Some girlfriends and I would like to dress up and go out for dinner next weekend. Would we be out of place at Da Guido? Our attire will be closer to "Sunday best/afternoon wedding reception" than "prom."

            1. re: aktivistin

              You will be fine. Da Guido doesn't really have a dress code per se, but I wore jeans and a sweater once and felt out of place. The decor is chandeliers and ornate furniture.

          2. I would second Buon Giorno's, great ambience and food.

            1. I had lunch at La Vita e Bella on Friday and was quite pleased with it. It's a small place, with excellent food and pleasant service. The veal cannelloni that I had was delicious and our waitress was a dead ringer for Olive Snook.

              La Vita e Bella
              401 12 Av SE, Calgary, AB T2G 1A5, CA

              1 Reply
              1. re: timuruski

                La Vita e Bella is pretty good and quite reasonably priced. Buon Giorno is my favourite mid-range italian, I go there lots. If you want to stay north of the river, La Villa Firenze is close to and in a cute little house like La Brezza. It was pretty good, but it's been a few years since I've been.

              2. It sounds like you would love Il Gallo Nero - A nice combination of attentive service, wonderful food and a lovely (but not ornate) atmosphere. It is on 17th Ave (old Alberta Wood Products location) west of the Stampede grounds. We had a memorable meal there in January with friends. It is recommended on some previous boards as well. The atmosphere and food are more upscale than either Il Centro or Buon Giorno - (but we like these too for an informal family meal).


                1 Reply
                1. re: canuckmum

                  i would say il gallo nero is priced more in the high end than mid-range for italian food. i had dinner there last christmas, and while competent, i've had better italian meals for less money elsewhere. My date's appetizer had a peculiar metallic taste to it, and i didn't much care for the TVs above the bar, as far as atmosphere goes... Sugo, which is similarly priced, does a much better job. Villa Firenze when i was there last (a year and a bit?) was much cheaper for about the same quality food and service (less the metallic tasting appy).

                2. I was about a heart beat away from making reservations at Da Guido, when another family member (the one who said he wanted italian!) made reservations at Forbidden City instead. So...my thoughts as follows...(be forewarned!)

                  We ordered the six person set dinner, and started with a cold cut like platter. It was beef, duck's feet and chicken. Pretty good, everything was fairly fresh, but a tiny bit over salted. Scallop soup was next, again, slightly over salted, which seems to be the running theme throughout the night. A spinich like vegetable dish (I never know the English equivalent...) was the best of the night - tender and fresh, really felt like they put some effort into that dish. An egg/shrimp dish was really good too...the egg is made to taste like crab. Pretty good overall, although I think I've had better from Silver Dragon and the much missed Shan Tung.