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The Best Italian Restaurants In Greenville SC | 7 Must-Try Places

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Welcome, fellow food enthusiasts, to a gastronomic journey through the heart of Greenville, South Carolina! 

In this delightful corner of the South, where Southern charm meets a hearty appetite, we’re embarking on a quest to uncover the 7 best Italian restaurants in Greenville, SC.

It’s a culinary adventure that promises to tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving more.

Nestled in the scenic Upstate region, Greenville is not only known for its stunning natural beauty but also for its thriving food scene.

It’s a city where innovation and tradition blend seamlessly, creating a unique culinary tapestry that’s a true feast for the senses.

Italian Restaurants in Greenville

Now, when it comes to Italian cuisine, you might be thinking, “In Greenville? Really?” Oh, yes, dear readers, really! Greenville has a remarkable culinary scene that has been quietly making waves, and its Italian restaurants are no exception. 

These hidden gems offer a taste of Italy right here in the heart of South Carolina.

Picture yourself savoring the perfect al dente pasta, indulging in creamy risotto, and relishing the rich flavors of handcrafted pizzas—all within the warm, inviting ambiance of these Italian eateries. It’s like a slice of Italy magically transported to Greenville.

So, as we embark on this delectable journey, prepare your taste buds for a whirlwind of flavors, textures, and aromas that will transport you straight to the streets of Rome, Milan, and Naples, all while keeping our feet firmly planted in Greenville, SC. 

Get ready to meet the culinary maestros behind these Italian delights and discover why they’ve earned a place on our list of the 7 Best Italian Restaurants in this charming Southern city. 

My Top Three Picks of the Best Italian Restaurants In Greenville SC

Restaurant Top PickOur Rating
Giovanni’s Italian RestaurantChicken Parmigiana5/5
Trio – A Brick Oven CafeHam Florentine calzone4.5/5
Carrabba’s Italian GrillFettuccine alfredo with grilled chicken4.5/5

The 7 Best Italian Restaurants In Greenville SC

Giovanni’s Italian Restaurant

1178 Woodruff Rd #4, Greenville, SC 29607, United States // +18642970999

In the realm of culinary adventures, every so often, we stumble upon a treasure that makes us reevaluate our dining experiences. 

Allow me to introduce you to “Giovanni’s Italian Restaurant” right here in Greenville, SC – a place where the unassuming exterior belies the culinary marvels that await within.

Nestled snugly in a quiet corner of a strip mall on Woodruff Road, Giovanni’s may not scream for your attention from the outside, but step through those unassuming doors, and you’ll find yourself transported to a world of cozy charm and delectable Italian cuisine that’s nothing short of enchanting.

My escapade to Giovanni’s was a journey worth savoring. As I entered, the dimly lit space whispered promises of a delightful evening ahead. The intimate setting set the stage for what was to come.

Chicken parmigiana with cheese and tomato sauce at Giovanni's Italian Restaurant

Giovanni’s boasts an array of Italian classics that will make your taste buds do a happy dance. 

Their Linguine with Clam Sauce, available in both red and white varieties, is a symphony of flavors that transports you straight to the Italian coast. 

It’s a dish that will have you dreaming of Mediterranean shores.

As I perused the menu, I couldn’t resist indulging in their Chicken Parmigiana, a masterpiece of crispy chicken goodness smothered in rich tomato sauce and melted cheese. It was comfort food at its finest.

And then there was the Veal Marsala, a tender and succulent dish that was a testament to the chef’s skill. Each bite was a harmonious blend of flavors that left me craving for more.

One thing to note, though, Giovanni’s doesn’t take reservations, so if you’re planning to embark on this Italian culinary journey, be sure to arrive early to avoid a lengthy wait. 

But let me assure you, even if there is a bit of a wait, you can enjoy the anticipation with a glass of fine Italian wine at the bar.

Jianna

600 S Main St #2, Greenville, SC 29601, United States // +18647202200

Next up, nestled high above the bustling Main Street, overlooking the picturesque Falls Park, is a culinary gem that’s as visually stunning as it is delicious – Jianna, a part of the Table 301 restaurant family, right here in Greenville, SC. 

Allow me to share my recent dining experience at this Italian restaurant that left me utterly enchanted.

As you ascend to the second floor and step onto the patio, the world seems to pause for a moment. 

The city views are nothing short of breathtaking, offering a backdrop that complements the culinary journey you’re about to embark on.

Even before you reach the hostess stand, you’re greeted by a sight that sets Jianna apart – a young pasta chef, meticulously crafting and extruding fresh pasta. 

It’s a subtle yet profound testament to the dedication to freshness that defines this establishment.

Oysters at Jianna

The menu at Jianna is a symphony of flavors orchestrated with seasonal flair. Classic Italian dishes like spaghetti and rigatoni pay homage to tradition, offering a taste of Italy that’s both comforting and exquisite. But let’s talk about the real showstopper – the oysters.

Jianna takes oysters to a whole new level. With a choice between East Coast and West Coast oysters, sourced fresh from across the nation, you’re in for an oceanic treat. 

What’s more, you can pair these briny delights with your choice of Jianna’s homemade hot sauce or the refreshing Moscato Mignonette, both crafted with the same dedication to freshness that defines this establishment.

The ambiance at Jianna is sleek and modern, providing a perfect setting for an unforgettable meal. 

It’s a place where every bite is a tribute to culinary craftsmanship, and every view from the patio is a feast for the eyes.

Carrabba’s Italian Grill

1022A Woodruff Rd, Greenville, SC 29607, United States // +18642139494

Stepping into Carrabba’s Italian Grill in Greenville, SC, felt like discovering a hidden gem in the heart of the city, and I couldn’t wait to share my delightful experience with you.

From the moment I walked through the doors, the welcoming aroma of Italian cuisine enveloped me in a warm embrace. It was a fragrant preview of the culinary journey that lay ahead. 

To add to the charm, the restaurant was filled with the soothing sounds of upbeat jazz music from the 30s and 40s, setting the perfect backdrop for a relaxing and enjoyable meal.

Now, let me introduce you to the star of the show – our wonderful waitress, Shandria. Her service was nothing short of amazing, making this visit to Carrabba’s truly special. 

She was not only attentive to our needs but also had a delightful sense of humor that made us feel right at home. It’s service like this that turns a meal into an unforgettable experience.

Fettucini Aflredo Pasta with Chicken at Carrabba's Italian Grill

As for the food, well, it was nothing short of spectacular. My taste buds danced with joy as I savored every bite of the fettuccine alfredo with grilled chicken

The creamy sauce coated the perfectly cooked pasta, and the tender, flavorful chicken elevated the dish to a whole new level.

Accompanied by a house salad that was a symphony of freshness, it was a meal that left me craving for more.

Carrabba’s Italian Grill is more than just a restaurant; it’s an experience of Italian culinary excellence served with a side of warm hospitality. 

Whether you’re looking for a cozy dinner for two or a delightful gathering with friends and family, Carrabba’s is the place to be.

Basilico Greenville

1175 Woods Crossing Rd #10, Greenville, SC 29607, United States // +18646312737

Have you ever stumbled upon a dining spot that felt like a well-kept secret? I recently had that very experience at Basilico Greenville, an Italian restaurant nestled in the heart of Greenville, SC. Allow me to regale you with the story of my delightful visit to this charming culinary gem.

From the moment I set foot inside Basilico, I knew I was in for something special. While the restaurant itself is small and intimate, it boasts a handful of inviting outdoor tables for those who prefer to dine in the open air. 

The atmosphere is a blend of warmth and charm, beautifully decorated to create an inviting ambiance that beckons you to stay a while.

But let’s get to the heart of the matter – the food. Oh, what a treat it was! As I perused the menu, the scent of freshly baked bread wafted through the air, a sign of the culinary delights to come. 

This bread, served with a yogurt sauce, was a revelation, setting the stage for the culinary adventure ahead.

Pizza at Basilico Greenville

For our main course, we ventured into the realm of Italian cuisine, ordering pizza, wings, and the tantalizing Seafood Diablo

The pizza was a masterpiece, and the Seafood Diablo, as its name suggests, was a fiery delight that had my taste buds dancing. 

While the wings were good, they didn’t quite reach the heights of the other dishes on the menu.

Now, let’s talk service. Our hostess, though a bit slow in getting to our table, exuded a warm and friendly demeanor that more than made up for any delay. It’s the kind of hospitality that makes you feel like a cherished guest.

As we concluded our meal, we had the pleasure of meeting the owners, who were as friendly and welcoming as could be.

It was the perfect ending to a delightful dining experience that left me eager to return and explore more of their signature dishes. Give this spot a try; you won’t regret it!

Portofino’s Italian Restaurant

30 Orchard Park Dr, Greenville, SC 29615, United States // +18646277706

Have you ever stumbled upon a dining spot that feels like a beloved institution? Well, I recently had the pleasure of discovering such a place in the heart of Greenville, SC – Portofino’s Italian Restaurant. 

Let me take you on a delightful journey through my visit to this longstanding Italian gem.

Situated on Orchard Park Drive, Portofino’s has been serving the Upstate for over two decades, making it a true Greenville institution. 

As I walked in, I could sense the history and tradition that filled the air, creating an ambiance that felt like a warm embrace.

Now, let’s talk about the heart of any Italian restaurant – the menu. Portofino’s boasts one of the most extensive pasta menus in town, and it’s a haven for lovers of Italian American classics. If you can dream of it, chances are it’s on their menu. From the comforting embrace of Spaghetti & Meatballs to the layers of flavor in their Lasagna, from the delicate pillows of Ravioli to the cheesy delight of Manicotti, Portofino’s offers a cornucopia of Italian comfort foods that’ll transport you straight to Nonna’s kitchen.

Spaghetti & Meatballs at Portofino's Italian Restaurant

One aspect that truly sets Portofino’s apart is their commitment to accommodating dietary restrictions. 

They offer veggie substitutions for many of their dishes, making it a welcoming spot for those with gluten-free requirements. 

It’s a gesture that speaks to their dedication to ensuring everyone can savor the joy of an Italian meal.

As for the dining experience, it’s informal and inviting, perfect for a cozy dinner outing. The full bar is a bonus, offering a variety of libations to complement your meal.

To sum it up, my visit to Portofino’s Italian Restaurant was like a culinary trip down memory lane. 

It’s a place where tradition meets diversity, and where Italian classics are served with a side of hospitality that makes you feel like family.

If you find yourself in Greenville craving a classic Italian meal, Portofino’s is the place to be. 

Trio – A Brick Oven Cafe

22 N Main St, Greenville, SC 29601, United States // +18644671000

Trio – A Brick Oven Cafe, a hidden gem nestled in Greenville, SC. The story of my visit to this charming Italian restaurant is one that’s bound to tantalize your taste buds.

From the moment I stepped into Trio, I was enchanted by its warm and inviting ambiance. The rustic charm of brick walls paired with the tantalizing aroma wafting from the brick oven set the stage for an unforgettable dining experience.

It’s the kind of place where every glance around the room promises a cozy and memorable meal.

Now, let’s talk about the menu – a culinary delight that left me spoiled for choice. Despite its concise nature, it boasts an impressive array of dishes, each one cooked to perfection with meticulous attention to detail. 

It was a delightful dilemma to decide what to order, given the tantalizing options that beckoned from the pages.

Calzone at Trio - A Brick Oven Cafe

My choice for the evening was the ham Florentine calzone, a selection I made with great anticipation, knowing that Trio’s brick oven was sure to work its magic. 

And magic it was! The calzone arrived, perfectly baked to a golden brown, with flavors that danced on my taste buds.

To round off the evening on a sweet note, I shared a churro donut dessert with a friend. It was a delectable treat that left us both raving about its perfection.

What truly sets Trio apart, however, is not just the food, but also the warm and attentive staff who ensure that your dining experience is nothing short of exceptional. 

Whether you’re seeking a casual meal with friends or a special occasion to celebrate, Trio delivers a flavorful journey that leaves a lasting impression.

Limoncello

401 River St, Greenville, SC 29601, United States // +18642637000

For the last restaurant we have Limoncello, a charming Italian restaurant nestled in the heart of Greenville, SC. 

My experience at this culinary gem was nothing short of extraordinary, and I’m excited to take you through it.

First things first, let’s talk about the ambiance. Limoncello is an absolute paradise for both indoor and outdoor dining enthusiasts. 

The restaurant exudes an inviting atmosphere that beckons you to sit back, relax, and savor every moment. 

Personally, I’m a huge fan of dining on their patio; there’s something enchanting about enjoying Italian cuisine amidst the open air.

Now, onto the main event – the food. Limoncello’s menu is a treasure trove of Italian delights, and my visit started with a tantalizing array of antipasti. 

Fried Calamari, Ricotta Toast, House Meatballs, and Fried Mozzarella were just the beginning of our culinary adventure. 

Each dish was a symphony of flavors that threatened to overshadow the main course.

Cannelloni at Limoncello

But fear not, I persevered, and it was well worth it. The scallops served with herb mascarpone risotto, crispy broccolini, and lemon butter were a revelation. 

The flavors melded together in perfect harmony, creating a dish that left me longing for more.

As I perused the menu, I couldn’t help but plan my return visits. The cannelloni, pappardelle, and capellini on the pasta menu beckoned, and the promise of house-made pizzas was too enticing to resist.

To end our unforgettable meal on a sweet note, we indulged in cool and refreshing gelato for dessert. It was the perfect conclusion to a culinary adventure that left us utterly satisfied.

Limoncello, part of the Larkin’s organization, is a shining star in Greenville’s Italian dining scene. They’ve truly outdone themselves with their contribution, offering a dining experience that’s nothing short of outstanding.

FAQs 

What are some must-try Italian dishes in Greenville, SC?

In Greenville, SC, you absolutely have to try the Spaghetti Carbonara at Giovanni’s Italian Restaurant. It’s a local favorite that’ll transport your taste buds straight to Rome!

What’s the best time to visit these Italian restaurants to avoid long waits?

To avoid long waits, it’s a good idea to visit these restaurants a bit earlier than peak dinner times, typically between 5:30 PM and 6:30 PM. Arriving early ensures you’ll have a better chance of securing a table without much of a wait.

Do any of the Italian restaurants in Greenville offer outdoor live music or entertainment?

While most Italian restaurants focus on creating a cozy dining experience, occasionally, you might find live music or entertainment at some of the more lively spots in Greenville. It’s a good idea to check their websites or call ahead to inquire about any upcoming events.

Wrapping Up: The 7 Best Italian Restaurants In Greenville SC

As we conclude our culinary journey through Greenville, exploring the 7 best Italian restaurants this charming city has to offer, there’s a sense of satisfaction that comes from savoring the flavors of Italy right here in the Upstate.

Each of these establishments has carved its own niche in the vibrant Italian food scene, adding its unique flair to the mix.

From the savory pasta dishes that transport you to the heart of Rome to the wood-fired pizzas that capture the essence of Naples, the Italian cuisine in Greenville is a delight for the senses. 

Whether you’re looking for a romantic date night spot, a family-friendly eatery, or a cozy outdoor dining experience, you’ll find it all in this culinary haven.

What truly stands out is the warm hospitality and attention to detail that accompany every meal. 

The friendly faces and inviting atmospheres make dining at these Italian gems an experience to remember.

So, whether you’re a local in search of your new favorite Italian haunt or a visitor looking to indulge in the flavors of Tuscany, rest assured that Greenville’s Italian restaurant scene has something to offer everyone. 

From classic comfort food to innovative twists on traditional dishes, it’s a journey of taste and tradition that’s bound to leave you craving more. Buon appetito!

Want to try other great dishes in South Carolina? Check out our other delicious guides:

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Susan Gioia

Thursday 7th of December 2023

You must like only “American Italian” interpretations of Italian food. The restaurants you featured really have nothing in common with true Italian cuisine. There are only two real Italian restaurants in Greenville. They are both owned by Italian chefs born in Italy. Ristorante Bergamo and Trattoria Giorgio. Give them a try. Your list might then have some credibility.

LouAnn

Wednesday 6th of December 2023

You totally missed Sciortino's Trattoria & Pizzeria at 3734 Pelham Road. The food there is terrific! The owners are from New York and make the best Pizza and all their meals are cooked to perfection. They should definitely be on your list!

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