good italianamerican food, mediocre service, great little place, superb staff, great ambiance, decent small portions, fresh veal picatta rocks
Italian NJ transplant in search of neighborhood Italian food.
My husband and I are from Northern NJ and were bummed about moving from Hoboken, NJ to L.A. knowing that it was going to be hard to find a great neighborhood Italian restaurant. So far, this restaurant is the closest to it. I recently had dinner here this past Sunday with my husband and my parents who were visiting. We ordered the Fried Calamari appetizer, which was great. Not greasy nor chewy, very tender. My mother ordered the Veal Saltimbocca, with a side of Fet. Alfredo (found it very interesting that not all meat/fish dishes came with a side of pasta with marinara, instead some of the entrees are served with a side of Fet. Alfredo) which at first was great. Again, not chewy and tender. But when I had the other half of her dish (I ordered Chicken Piccata but instead they gave me Veal, which I returned to the kitchen) the piece that I had was very chewy, it wasn't overcooked but the cut of veal itself was tough. My father ordered the Spaghetti with Sausage & a side of Meatballs which was delicious. I didn't try the sausage, but I did try the meatball which was very tender and HUGE. My husband ordered the Chicken Parm which was great and I had the Chicken Piccata, which I had boxed to take home. The Chicken Piccata was good, not over cooked and decorated with fresh lemon slices and parsley. Their sauces were tasty and delicious. Even the Fet. Alfredo was great.
We all had dessert, too. My Mom had the Creme Brulee, my Dad had a dish of Vanilla ice cream and my husband and I both had the spumoni. The spumoni was nothing great and I would not recommend nor order it again. It looked and tasted like cheap ice cream, very similar to Edy's/Dreyer's spumoni.
I would highly recommend this restaurant if you're looking for simple Italian home cooking. Fill up on their apps and main courses and skip dessert. Service was great (made reservations on a Sunday for 7pm and it was PACKED), food was delicious and the jazz band was a nice touch.
Food Great...Service Ehhh. I have lived in Playa del Rey my entire life and if I got a nickel for every time I passed by this place without going in, I would have enough money to put a down payment on a house in Chula Vista. The problem is that the exterior decorations are so unbelievably cheesy that you couldn't possibly imagine that they actually served up a decent meal inside. But the fact is, the food is pretty darn good. If you go any time Thurs - Sun in the evening you will usually have to wait....and when I say "wait," I don't just mean for a table, I mean for your food as well. The service there leaves little to be desired. Though I will say this, they serve up one of the best eggplant parmigianas I have tasted in a long time. The marshmallow fluffiness of the eggplant has just the right amount of chewiness, and it pretty much melts on its way down. Their pizza is thin and made with a foccacia-like dough which is good enough that you wont see any remnance of crust on the plates of the people who order it. I would definitely recommend this place for dinner, but not if you are looking for a quick bite.
Best Tiramisu!. Cantalini's is a great local spot. The penne with marinara that is served with the veal parmigiana was so-so. But the veal was excellent. The homemade tortellini is excellent! To top it off the tiramisu is the best I've ever had. Make sure you order the homemade pastas if you can. It's much better than Caffe Pinguini down the street.
Great Cioppino and everything else, free Valet. Best kept secret in L.A.. At the end of Culver Blvd. in Playa Del Rey, is one of the most charming, fine Italian dining experiences at affordable prices in Los Angeles. Cantalini?s Salerno Beach has a style and presence all its own. Lisa makes you so comfortable you feel like you are eating at the home of a good friend who can really COOK!!! Try it and you?ll love it, we do, frequently!
Great food, wine and location!. The food is terrific and the wine list has all the Italian favorites...but the best part is the family owned and operated feel. Small neighborhood resaurant near the beach in Playa Del Rey. Valet parking available since there is little street parking. A great local haunt!
Editorial Review. In addition to pasta and seafood, this Playa Del Ray spot also provides catering and private event services.
Nice Beach area Italian Food. We really like the basic ambience mixed with Homemade above average Italian food. Very good Tiramisu.
Romantic, Delicious. My wife and I love this spot for a night away. The food really is fantastic, and the ambiance is wonderfully romantic without being stuffy.
Old School Atmosphere. Good food. Mediocre service. Hearty portions. Very casual. Cozy area. Have a drink next door afterwards.
Great Italian Food Just Like Grandma's. This is a great place for Italian food just like Grandma's, with a few modern twists (and great pizza although most people don't know it!). The service is really great and you can tell it's a real place run by real people, not some impersonal "Eye-talian" chain or something. Seriously, try the pizza.
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