Since I’m not in L.A. all the time, I have my go-to restaurants that I must hit. Il Pastaio is definitely one of those restaurants!
The Shut-Up-and-Give-it-to-Me-Quick Version:
Great Italian food at very reasonable prices (considering it is in Beverly Hills). Service could use a little help, but the food makes up for the lack of hospitality.
Mon – Thurs 11:30 am – 11 pm
Fri – Sat 11:30 am – 12 am
Sun 11:30 – 10 pm
The I-Like-to-be-Wrapped-Up-in-All-the-Details Version:
Il Pastaio is a Beverly Hills staple and some of the best Italian food I have had in L.A. The restaurant is not very big, but they offer indoor and outdoor seating. I prefer the outdoor seating because it feels more open and people watching in Beverly Hills is very entertaining. I think this restaurant is better for smaller groups, five people max. They can accommodate more people, but in general the tables are pretty close together and space is limited.
Seeing as my family has been dining here for years I can attest to the fact that they are not super hospitable. I love when you’re a regular at a restaurant and you know the waiters, they know you, and they have your preferences memorized…this is not that place. I am lucky if the waiter smiles while taking my order. They aren’t rude or snobby, they just don’t go that extra mile to be friendly. That is testament to their good food because regardless of the staff’s attitude, we find ourselves coming back again and again.
What we ate:
- Tortelloni Di Zucca ($15.50)
- Fettuccine Bolognese ($15.95)
I love this tortelloni dish! Everything here is good, but I can’t go and not order this dish. Other restaurants have attempted this, but I find myself comparing it to il Pastaio and it ALWAYS fails to come even close. This dish is homemade tortelloni stuffed with pumpkin and fresh ricotta served in a parmesan cream sauce, topped with sage. The dish has a mellow flavor, but tasty nonetheless. Everything homemade is better so this pasta (along with all of their others) definitely stands out from restaurants that don’t make their own (which is most). The pumpkin makes a big difference, other places make this with squash and I think the pumpkin gives it more flavor and makes the texture extra smooth. The sauce is super creamy and goes well with the pumpkin, and the sage gives it that kick of flavor. The portion isn’t big, but it does fill me up. Not to say that sometimes I’m not tempted to order seconds.
The fettuccine bolognese is my sister’s go to. I would normally say that’s boring, but not at il Pastaio. This homemade fettuccine with meat sauce is very rich and always delicious. The sauce isn’t oily and it is just the right consistency. I also like that the pasta-to-sauce ratio is just right. The dish is not too heavy and is everything you would want in a bolognese pasta.
Other dishes I have tried and would recommend: Trittico salad, lasagna, tiramisu…Everything!
Come back tomorrow to read all about a Sonoma diner that will have you licking your fingers.