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Where to Find the Best Italian Food in Reno? | 10 Best Italian Restaurants In Reno, NV Updated January 2024

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Often overshadowed by its glitzy neighbor, Las Vegas, Reno is a hidden gem—especially when it comes to food. If you’re someone who appreciates a delicious Italian meal, you’re in the right place.

While the city boasts a diverse culinary scene—from sushi bars to farm-to-table joints—today, we’re focusing on a cuisine that warms the soul: Italian. Who can resist the allure of creamy risottos, heavenly pizzas, and pasta that’s cooked just al dente? Not me, that’s for sure.

Prepare to be pleasantly surprised. The Reno Italian restaurants here are so authentic that you might catch yourself talking with your hands and saying “Ciao, Bella!” before you know it.

So, what’s cooking in Reno’s Italian food scene? Well, a whole lot of deliciousness, if you ask me. Whether it’s an intimate date night you’re planning or just a casual dinner with friends, I’ve got you covered. 

In this article, we’re diving fork-first into the six must-try Italian restaurants in Reno, Nevada. Each place we’ll explore has its own unique charm, from rustic dishes that remind you of grandma’s cooking to modern takes that would make even a Milanese chef nod in approval.

Ready to embark on a culinary journey through Italy, but with a Reno twist? Keep reading! Trust me, by the end of this article, you’ll be reaching for your phone to make a reservation in one of the best Italian restaurants in Reno!

My Top Three Picks of The Best Italian Food In Reno

Restaurant Top PickOur Rating
Johnny’s Ristorante ItalianoVeal5/5
La StradaMushroom Ravioli5/5
Zozo’s RistoranteMarsala Chicken5/5

The 10 Best Italian Food Restaurants in Reno, Nevada

Johnny’s Ristorante Italiano

4245 W. 4th St., Reno, NV 89523, United States // +17757474511

You know those restaurants that stand the test of time, becoming almost legendary in the process? Johnny’s Ristorante Italiano is that spot in Reno, and boy, does it live up to its reputation! 

This place has been serving up delectable Italian dishes since 1966. That’s right, 1966! Founded by Johnny and Mary Cassinari, it’s like stepping into a time capsule of culinary excellence, but with a fresh twist that keeps you coming back for more.

From the moment you walk in, you’ll feel elegant yet oh—so—cozy ambiance. It’s the sort of place where you’ll want to dress up but feel completely at home, a perfect blend of upscale and comforting. 

The menu? A mouthwatering journey through Italy’s finest. I had the pesto gnocchi, and let me tell you, each bite was a mini-vacation to the Italian Riviera. Cooked to perfection and oozing with flavors, I had to pause for a moment just to savor it. 

pesto gnocchi Best Italian Food in Reno

And don’t even get me started on the garlic bread. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t consider making a meal solely from it. Crispy, warm, and oh-so-garlicky—it’s the stuff of carb dreams.

But the showstopper, the dish that practically brought a tear to my eye, was the veal. So tender that it practically melted on my tongue. Accompanied by the antipasti platter and a glass of wine that was nothing short of divine, it rounded out a dining experience that was near-perfect. 

I say “near-perfect” only because I couldn’t sample dessert—I was too stuffed!

So, if you find yourself in Reno and want Italian food that will make your heart sing, Johnny’s Ristorante Italiano is a no-brainer!

Bella Italia Restaurant

8155 S Virginia St # 100A, Reno, NV 89511, United States // +17758538844

Tucked away in a modest shopping center lies a delightful surprise for any Italian cuisine aficionado: Bella Italia Restaurant. 

This unassuming eatery, run by a charming husband and wife team, offers a slice of Italy right in the heart of Reno, Nevada. 

From the moment you step inside, you’re enveloped in the warmth and passion they pour into their establishment, making every dining experience not just a meal, but a memorable event.

Bella Italia specializes in traditional Italian fare, serving up dishes that are a testament to the beauty of simplicity and the skill of using quality ingredients to create flavors that sing. 

Their menu, featuring classics like veal, fusilli, and ravioli, showcases the authentic Italian flavors that are often lost in translation in more Americanized versions of these dishes.

The food here is light and elegant, a refreshing departure from the heavier, often chunky interpretations of Italian cuisine elsewhere.

Fettuccine Alfredo

Every dish is crafted with care, resulting in a meal that’s both satisfying and a feast for the senses. On my visit, I opted for the Fettuccine Alfredo, a dish so beautifully executed, 

I was left wondering why no other restaurant in Reno or Sparks seems to offer such a delightful option. Meanwhile, my friend indulged in the chicken parm, a choice he raved about throughout the meal, commending its deliciousness.

What truly sets Bella Italia apart is its commitment to authenticity and quality, paired with prices that make you do a double-take, considering the caliber of food on your plate. 

It’s a testament to the dedication of its owners, who succeed in bringing a piece of their Italian heritage to our local dining scene.

La Cucina

3600 Lakeside Dr., Reno, NV 89509, United States // +17758263939

If you love Johnny’s Ristorante Italiano, prepare for an encore performance with a casual twist at La Cucina Italian Eatery! Yup, it’s run by the same Cassinari family that gave us the iconic Johnny’s. 

Think of La Cucina as Johnny’s younger, hipper sibling who’s still steeped in the family’s culinary prowess. Casual but not lacking in quality, La Cucina’s atmosphere hits that sweet spot between laid-back and lively. 

Did I mention they have an outdoor patio? Open in spring and summer, it’s a game-changer for al fresco dining. Sip on some good wine, enjoy the open air, and relish the swift, friendly service.

Alright, let’s talk food. They start you off with bread, but it’s not just any bread. This is bread that won’t do a number on the roof of your mouth; it’s soft and uniquely tasty. Dipped in olive oil and balsamic vinegar, it sets the tone for a meal that is, dare I say it, mouthwatering.

Now, for the main event. The spicy angel hair pasta took me by surprise—in the best way. It had a kick but didn’t overpower the freshness of the pasta. 

spicy angel hair pasta

And get this: They’ve got a ton of gluten-free options. How awesome is that? It’s been a hit every time I’ve dined here, but the fresh-made pasta always steals the show for me.

So, if you’re not in the mood to go full-blown gourmet but still want authentic Italian food in Reno, La Cucina is your spot.

You get the family heritage of Johnny’s but in a more relaxed environment. It’s the perfect Italian eatery to keep things chill without skimping on the quality. Seriously, what’s not to love?

Marcolino’s Italia

254 W 1st St, Reno, NV 89501, United States // +17758001693

From the bustling excitement of Reno’s Food Truck Friday to a cherished spot in the heart of downtown, Marcolino’s Italia stands as a testament to the city’s culinary evolution. 

Witnessing a favorite food truck blossom into a brick-and-mortar restaurant is like watching a culinary dream unfold into reality, especially in an area where casino-bound eateries often overshadow local dining gems.

Going into Marcolino’s feels like discovering a secret haven of Italian cuisine, a “hole in the wall” that whispers of becoming the next big thing in Reno’s dining scene. 

The advice to snag a reservation before Marcolino’s becomes the talk of the town isn’t just wise; it’s essential for any serious food lover looking to embark on an authentic Italian journey.

The service here is a highlight, with staff that make you feel not just welcomed, but truly valued—a rarity that elevates the dining experience. 

chicken parmesan

But let’s talk about the food, because at Marcolino’s, it’s all about the flavors that transport you straight to Italy. The chicken parmesan? Simply unmatched. 

Each bite is a symphony of perfectly breaded chicken, melting cheese, and a sauce that could only be described as a masterpiece. It’s the kind of sauce that lingers in your memory, setting a standard that few can meet.

Then there’s the garlic bread, a seemingly simple side that Marcolino’s turns into an essential taste experience, and the cannoli, oh, the cannoli! 

Each one is a piece of Sicilian heaven, a perfect finale to a meal that feels like a warm Italian embrace.

With friendly and personable staff adding to the restaurant’s charm, it’s no surprise Marcolino’s has journeyed from food truck fame to a beacon of fine dining within a year. 

As I left, already planning my next visit, I couldn’t help but wonder where Marcolino’s will be in five years. 

If their current trajectory is anything to go by, we’re all in for an extraordinary culinary adventure.

Mario’s Portofino Ristorante

1505 S. Virginia St., Reno, NV 89502, United States // +17758257779

This spot is old-school Italian, and I mean that with the utmost respect. Think booths that look like they’ve been lifted straight from a Rat Pack hangout and decor that screams ’60s chic but in a way that’s charmingly vintage.

So, what’s the vibe? Picture being enveloped in a warm hug the moment you walk through the door. Everyone from the staff to fellow diners makes you feel like you’re part of the family. 

Now, for the food! I kicked off my culinary adventure with a Caprese salad. Simple? Maybe. Delicious? Absolutely. A classic done well sets the stage, and Mario’s did not disappoint. 

seafood risotto

But hold on because the seafood risotto is a showstopper. I’d go as far as saying it’s an opera of flavors and textures, from the perfectly cooked rice to the succulent seafood. Add some cheese? Why not? When in Reno—scratch that—when in Mario’s, do as the Romans do.

Let’s talk drinks, shall we? Whatever concoction they’re mixing up behind that bar, it’s doing the trick. I mean, what’s an Italian feast without some fine vino or a killer cocktail? 

Now, brace yourselves for dessert. The panna cotta is like the mic drop at the end of a jaw-dropping concert.

Word to the wise: Mario’s is a hotspot, so reservations are highly recommended. Trust me, this is one chapter in Reno’s Italian food story you won’t want to skip!

Romano’s Macaroni Grill

5505 S Virginia St, Reno, NV 89502, United States // +17754489994

Romano’s Macaroni Grill is a place where the clatter of plates, the hum of conversation, and the warmth of an open kitchen converge to create an inviting atmosphere, unusual for a restaurant of its size.

On a night out in search of authentic Italian cuisine, I found myself drawn to this spot, enticed by its reputation for small plates, pizzas, pastas, and an impressive selection of wine. 

The ambiance struck me immediately—a cozy vibrancy set against the backdrop of jazz tunes that added layers of comfort to the sprawling space.

Comparisons to similar dining establishments are inevitable, yet Romano’s Macaroni Grill stands out for its commitment to quality at prices that defy expectations. 

Chicken Marsala

The food here is a revelation, a step above the rest, consistently delivering on flavor and satisfaction.

The evening’s meal began with a classic Chicken Marsala, each bite infused with the rich, earthy tones of Marsala wine and mushroom sauce, followed by a crisp, refreshing salad. 

However, it was the Key Lime Cheesecake that stole the show, a perfect balance of tart and sweet, serving as the crescendo to a symphonic dining experience.

But beyond the food, what truly sets Romano’s apart is the service. Attentive, warm, and impeccably timed, the staff ensures every moment feels exclusive, transforming a simple dinner into a memorable occasion.

La Strada

345 N. Virginia St., Reno, NV 89501, United States // +17753483401

Let’s talk about a place where you might want to put on your finest attire and make it a date night to remember. I’m pointing my gastronomic compass toward La Strada, nested like a hidden gem within the Eldorado Resort Casino. 

Fancy? You bet. Stuffy? Not a chance. La Strada marries sophistication with warmth in a way that only an Italian restaurant can.

From the get-go, you’re welcomed into a space that oozes elegance but maintains an intimate charm. You feel like you’re part of an exclusive club—but a really friendly one, where everyone knows the secret handshake is just a fork poised for some divine eats.

Okay, let’s dive straight into the dish that I still dream about, the Mushroom Ravioli. I can see why people rave that it’s one of the best in the country. Each ravioli is a cloud-like pocket of earthy, rich flavors, practically melting on the tongue.

mushroom ravioli

And for my fellow carnivores, the Lamb Chops are a must-try. Pan-seared to perfection and served with cremini mushrooms and a demi glaze that should probably have its own fan club.

Ready for a sugar high? Don’t skip the Tiramisu paired with coffee Espresso gelato. It’s the dessert equivalent of a standing ovation. I’ll even go on record and give both the food and the service a resounding 10 out of 10.

Since we’re talking about a hot ticket in town, reservations are pretty much mandatory. Believe me, a table at La Strada is a Reno Italian jackpot you’ll definitely want to hit!

Romanza

2707 S Virginia St, Reno, NV 89502, United States // +17756897474

Located within a realm where starry frescoes, flickering torches, and classical statues set the stage, this restaurant promises an evening not just of dining, but of enchantment.

The ambiance of Romanza is a prelude to the culinary symphony that awaits. On a night that promised much, it delivered beyond expectations. 

The cocktails, particularly the lemoncello tini, were a delightful harbinger of the flavors to come, blending tradition with a touch of modern flair.

The cuisine at Romanza is nothing short of exemplary. The Antipasti, a vibrant array of Salami and Cheeses, Mediterranean Olives, Vine-Ripened Tomatoes, and Arugula, lightly kissed with Extra Virgin Olive Oil, was a celebration of textures and tastes, inviting us to explore a mosaic of Italian flavors. 

The Saffron Fettuccine then graced our table, its light yet richly flavored strands of pasta weaving a tale of culinary craftsmanship.

Duck Breast

But it was the roasted Duck Breast that emerged as the evening’s masterpiece. Stuffed with Tart Apple, Italian Sausage, Ciabatta Bread, and bathed in a Cranberry-Port Sauce, each forkful was a revelation, a perfect balance of savory and sweet, of tradition and innovation.

Dessert was no less magnificent. The Tiramisu, with its layers of espresso-soaked ladyfingers, mascarpone, and cocoa, was a fitting finale to a meal that felt like a journey through the heart of Italy.

The service at Romanza mirrored the excellence of its dishes—warm, attentive, and engaging, elevating the dining experience to one of genuine connection and joy. 

It’s rare to find a place that not only promises luxury but delivers a sense of warmth and welcome with such grace.

Romanza, with its blend of romantic ambiance, exquisite cuisine, and impeccable service, stands as a beacon of Italian dining excellence. 

It’s a venue where each visit feels like an escape, a momentary departure from the everyday into a world where every detail is dedicated to pleasure, celebration, and delicious food.

La Famiglia

170 S. Virginia St., Reno, NV 89501, United States // +17753241414

Say “ciao” to La Famiglia Ristorante Italiano, a spot that manages to be both laid-back and oh-so-elegant. 

Now, I don’t use the word “tradition” lightly, but La Famiglia, a family hospitality restaurant, embodies it in every sense.

Picture an Old-World-inspired menu that could rival your Italian grandma’s recipe book, a wine list that reads like a sommelier’s dream, and an ambiance that immediately makes you think, “I’m gonna like it here.” And you will. Trust me!

The moment of truth comes when you take that first bite. For me, it was the Beef Carpaccio. Fresh, thinly sliced, and seasoned to perfection. It’s the sort of dish that makes you pause and appreciate the culinary artistry at play.

As for the entrées? Allow me to sing the praises of the special Ciopino and a Caesar salad that’s anything but ordinary. The Ciopino brims with the kind of deep, seafood-infused flavors that leave you scooping up every last morsel.

Beef Carpaccio

 And the Caesar salad? It’s the understated backup singer who totally deserves their own solo.

Now, a word on the wine. La Famiglia’s wine list is like an Italian treasure map, where X marks the perfect pairing for your meal. I found a gem that elevated my dinner from great to unforgettable.

So, the verdict? High marks all around for food, ambiance, and service. At La Famiglia, you’re not just a customer; you’re part of the famiglia. And once you dine here, you’ll definitely want to keep it in the family!

Zozo’s Ristorante

3446 Lakeside Dr., Reno, NV 89509, United States // +17758299449

If you’re after an Italian eatery that feels like you’ve just stepped into a rustic Roman trattoria, then look no further. Welcome to Zozo’s Ristorante—Reno’s ultimate foodie sanctuary. 

The vibe here? Cozy to the core. Think exposed-brick walls, a relaxed atmosphere, and service that makes you feel like the guest of honor at an Italian feast.

Let’s cut to the chase—the food is jaw-dropping good. Generous portions? Oh, you better believe it. Our waiter was a culinary Sherpa, guiding us through the menu with expertise. 

We kicked off the feast with their appetizer, Lobster Ravioli. Folks, this was the real deal. Perfectly cooked, gorgeously presented, and bursting with rich lobster goodness.

Marsala Chicken

Now, I’ve got to talk about their bruschetta—served warm! If bruschetta had a glow-up, this is it. 

Moving on to mains, I was caught between the Marsala Chicken and the Calamari Steak. So, I tried both. Zero regrets. Each bite was like a mini-vacation to the Italian countryside.

So, if you’re looking for your new “it” spot in Reno for Italian fare, Zozo’s Ristorante has got to be on your radar. It’s not just a meal; it’s an experience, one that’ll have you rushing back for an encore.

Best Italian Restaurants In Reno, Nevada: To Visit List

1. Pasta Fresca

  1. Cuisine: Italian
  2. Location: 6135 Lakeside Dr #138, Reno, NV 89511, United States
  3. Price: $$
  4. Rating: 4.8 out of 153 reviews

2. Calafuria

  1. Cuisine: Italian
  2. Location: 725 S Center St, Reno, NV 89501, United States
  3. Price: $$
  4. Rating: 4.5 out of 171 reviews

3. Casale’s Halfway Club

  1. Cuisine: Italian
  2. Location: 2501 E 4th St, Reno, NV 89512, United States
  3. Price: $$
  4. Rating: 4.6 out of 737 reviews

4. DOPO Pizza & Pasta

  1. Cuisine: Italian, Pizza
  2. Location: 18 St Lawrence Ave, Reno, NV 89509, United States
  3. Price: $$
  4. Rating: 4.6 out of 125 reviews

5. Skipolini’s

  1. Cuisine: Italian, Pizza
  2. Location: 13971 S Virginia St, Reno, NV 89511, United States
  3. Price: $$
  4. Rating: 4.2 out of 963 reviews

6. Paisan’s Old World Deli & Catering

  1. Cuisine: Italian, Deli
  2. Location: 6550 Longley Ln Suite 110, Reno, NV 89511, United States
  3. Price: $
  4. Rating: 4.6 out of 611 reviews

7. Pinocchio’s Bar & Grill

  1. Cuisine: Italian
  2. Location: 5995 S Virginia St, Reno, NV 89502, United States
  3. Price: $$
  4. Rating: 4.5 out of 680 reviews

Frequently Asked Questions About Italian Food In Reno: Foodies Also Ask

Why is Reno considered a good place for Italian cuisine?

Reno may be known for its casinos and the “Biggest Little City” vibe, but it’s also a hidden gem for Italian food lovers, offering some of the best Italian food I’ve ever tasted.

The Reno Italian food scene here is rich and diverse, blending old-world traditions with innovative twists. It’s a culinary roulette where you almost always win!

What kinds of Italian restaurants can I find in Reno?

The spectrum is broad and delicious! From family-run spots like Johnny’s Ristorante Italiano to the upscale elegance of La Strada inside Eldorado Resort, you’ve got options. Whether you’re craving hearty pasta dishes, gourmet pizzas, or fine Italian wines, Reno has got you covered.

Are there gluten-free Italian options available?

Absolutely! Places like La Cucina Italian Eatery offer a variety of gluten-free dishes so you can enjoy Italian flavors without the worry. Gluten-free pasta, anyone?

Do these restaurants offer vegetarian or vegan options?

Yes, most of Reno’s Italian joints are happy to accommodate vegetarians and often vegans, too. From plant-based pasta dishes to meat-free pizzas, you can still experience the essence of Italy without the meat.

Do I need to make reservations?

Some of the more upscale or popular spots definitely recommend it, especially on weekends. If you’ve got your heart set on a place like Mario’s Portofino Ristorante, it’s a good idea to book ahead.

Wrapping Up: Where to Find the Best Italian Food in Reno

So, there you have it, folks—a whirlwind tour of Reno’s absolutely irresistible Italian food landscape. The “Biggest Little City in the World” might be renowned for its glittering casinos and electrifying nightlife, but let me tell you, the culinary scene is no less dazzling, especially when it comes to Italian cuisine.

 What makes this place truly stand out is the variety and authenticity on offer. Whether you’re looking for a casual spot to chow down on some spaghetti with the fam or seeking a romantic evening enveloped by soft lighting and the aroma of truffle oil, Reno has something to suit every taste and occasion.

Now, if you’re like me, part of the joy of eating Italian food is the vibrant atmosphere that usually comes with it. And Reno delivers on that front, too. Reno’s Italian dining isn’t just about filling your belly; it’s a full-on experience. 

Think curated wine lists, warm and welcoming staff, and spaces designed with the kind of charm that’ll make you want to linger over that last sip of espresso just a little bit longer.

Don’t forget that Italian cuisine is as much about the ingredients as it is about love and tradition. From freshly made pasta to organically sourced vegetables, you’re not just eating a meal; you’re partaking in a culinary story that spans generations.

 As you can probably tell, I’m more than a little passionate about this topic. So, take my advice: don’t let the neon lights of Reno distract you too much. In between the slots and the shows, make sure to pull up a chair at one of its many Italian eateries. Your taste buds will thank you!

While in Reno don’t miss out on activities that will help immerse yourself with the city (hurry while they’re hot!):

Check out my other guides:

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