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  • Avanti Ristorante Italiano

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Avanti Ristorante Italiano
Avanti Ristorante Italiano

Avanti Ristorante Italiano Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.avantipennington.com/
  • Phone: (609) 737-7174
  • Hours of Operation: Lunch: Tuesday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:00pm

    Dinner: Tuesday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 9:00pm

    Friday & Saturday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian, Mediterranean
  • Executive Chef: Vincenzo Severino
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, BYO Liquor, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access
  • Catering: Party trays are available for your event at home or work and requires 24 hours notice. Delivery is available for parties over 25. Avanti has offsite catering space at the Pennington fire house which can accommodate up to 100.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Main Street
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Off-street parking as well as a Municipal Lot available
A word from Avanti Ristorante Italiano
Avanti Ristorante Italiano was opened in 1993 by Chef Vincenzo Severino. Vincenzo’s cuisine is the encapsulation of his passion for food and of his obsession to please his patrons. His inspiration comes from his many trips back to his beloved Sicily, where he breathes in as much as he possibly can in order to translate his journeys into new and exciting dishes for his and Kathleen’s loyal customers. Indeed, many of their guests have been coming to Avanti Ristorante since they opened and some even maintain standing dinner reservations all year round. The attraction is definitely the food, but the pièce de résistance is clearly when Vincenzo comes out of the kitchen mid-evening to greet his patrons who have all become his friends. Dinner at Avanti Ristorante is like having dinner with a group of friends or even family, and this is what makes the experience a most memorable one.Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerItalian
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNeighborhood Gem
Diner Reviews
  • "I hadn't been to Avanti's for a few years. The food remains very good with a varied menu."
    Dined on 8/15/2014
  • "My family and I went to Avanti for our anniversary dinner.We had a great experience service was great alway when we needed our waiter he was there. food was excellent our order came well timed we finished with Banana Foster mmm I love that stuff."
    Dined on 7/27/2014
  • "This was my third time at Avanti but I was very disappointed in the food. The baked chicken dish with cheese and tomatoes was just ok. There was very little cheese and the chicken was pretty dry. The appetizer of shrimp and bruschetta was just so so and the bread in the basket was dry. I also found that the salad dressing was very watered down. We have been to Avanti where it is crowded but this time it was virtually empty. Maybe new owners and new chef? Won't be returning in the near future."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "I was glad to see some new entrees, especially the hazelnut-crusted rack of lamb from the owners other place (La Mezzaluna). Knowing how often I enjoyed it there, I had some anxiety they would be less than what I expected. Not So! While a little different to the taste, it was delicious in it's own way. All in all, a great dining experience."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "We want the old owners back! It is not the same since they sold the place."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Small intimate dining. New owner and staff make you feel right at home. BYOB."
    Dined on 7/9/2014
  • "After a month between visits, I can detect some positive changes in the quality of the food. This is still a 4+ star dining experience. This is pretty much what I say about Michael's restaurant, La Mezzaluna. There are some nice, distinctions between the two and both are wonderful places to dine."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "had the steak special, which was a porterhouse covered in a mushroom and bacon creme sauce. it was one of the best meals i have had in a very long time. "
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "Now under new management and it shows in the food and service. With Trenton losing all of its Italian restaurants, here is a place worthy of the 'Burg' of old. Finally a spot for good , reliable Italian food in a charming old house."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "This has always been a very good restaurant, but I was pleasantly surprised to see that it is now owned by Michael Moriello, who owns the excellent Mezzaluna restaurant in Princeton. Avanti has a more traditional menu than Mezzaluna, but the quality is exceptional. "
    Dined on 6/4/2014
  • "I took my husband here for his birthday dinner. We hadn't been in a long time. We both loved our dinner and our waiter was very nice. Would go again!"
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "Pretty much had the place to myself, today (so much different than at Dinner times) and found the food just as good (4 - 4 1/2 stars). I enjoyed my sausage and chicken Pelligrino, as well as the soup."
    Dined on 5/29/2014
  • "Still my favorite restaurant after 15 years! Everything is excellent, although I'm partial to the Vodka Rigatoni. If you're lucky, Vincenzo will be there to stop by and say hello. "
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "We truly enjoyed our meal - Chicken Lemone and Champagne Chicken."
    Dined on 5/23/2014
  • "Avanti-still fantastic after 21 years. It just gets better and better!"
    Dined on 5/14/2014
  • "I love this place---the food, the service, the atmosphere. Lunch menu with specials is always great with fast service. The meatballs here are proof that God loves us. Dinner is another thing, though. Even in an empty dining room, we were seated elbow to elbow with other people (no kidding, 4 people in the restaurant & the woman at the next table kept bumping my chair with her elbow, not her fault). When crowded for dinner, it gets pretty loud but not unbearable. 1 complaint: there were 8, yes 8, specials for dinner. By the time the server got to the middle of the list, I couldn't remember the first 2 things...at all...and neither could my dining partners. I do love this place, though. The food is amazing. "
    Dined on 5/7/2014
  • "Avanti is one of our favorite Italian restaurants. Normally, the wait staff are very attentive but not this last time. We were served well after other tables that had been filled after we had been seated. However, the food was very good as usual which saved the evening. "
    Dined on 5/2/2014
  • "We have eaten at Avanti's scores of times over the past 15+ years and have never had a poor meal. Good ingredients, good cooking, and friendly service!!!!"
    Dined on 5/2/2014
  • "The restaurant is a great find. It is tucked away behind the barbershop in downtown pennington. The food was unbelievable and so was the service. You will find specialty dishes that you will not find in most other Italian restaurants. The owners will greet you as you enter the restaurant and also check to make sure everything is great with your meal. Everyone is very knowledgable and helpful with the menu. It is decorated to give you a very comfortable feeling. The outside patio seating looks great and will be opening shortly and I look forward to eating outdoors. Reservations are recommended as there is limited seating but worth the trip. "
    Dined on 4/24/2014
  • "It was an excellent dinner on Vince's last evening, here. I lunched here when it was a brunch/bookstore, then it was an Indonesian restaurant, and for the past 21 years, I have dined here a few times a year. I never recall having a bad meal. Good luck to Michael who will be taking over. I eat at his Princeton restaurant frequently (always pleased with their food and service). I'd think there won't be too much difficulty in maintaining the very high standards that Chef Vince established many years ago."
    Dined on 4/24/2014
  • "I made reservations with 2 co-workers to celebrate her good health. We had a nice corner table as requested and were seated on time. I ordered something that was not on the menu (it was a special that I had once before) The waitress was very accommodating and quickly recalled the name of the dish after I described it. She said "we can certainly make that for you today". My friend also ordered it and she said it was delicious. My other friend asked for a dish to be modified and it came out exactly as she requested. We had a wonderful time and were not rushed out. Coffee was fresh and the service was outstanding. I highly recommend this restaurant for lunch! I have not been here for dinner yet but will definitely try it one night. "
    Dined on 4/22/2014
  • "Great food and service vodka rigs simply recommended. A must try...."
    Dined on 4/16/2014
  • "We have been enjoying Avanti's since it opened in the Pennington area. The owners , chef and staff have consistently delvered an outstanding experience over many years. It offers great ambience, friendly and knowledgeable service, and consistently great food. By far the best Italian restaurant in the area (Antimo's Kitchen in Hopewell is also great, but smaller and less formal) and is great either if you are there with a large group or if out for a quiet dinner for 2. Thanks to all: the owners, chef, and staff !"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "Great food, great service, love the coziness of Avante'! Absolutely wonderful! "
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "Avanti is our go to spot for whenever we get a chance to go out for dinner. The food is always excellent and the owners and staff are wonderful. You can't go wrong here!"
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "Food was not only delicious but abundant. Nicely decorated interior. Excellent service. Will be back, next time with some friends."
    Dined on 3/20/2014
  • "We've been going to Avanti's for years and are always satisfied. The staff acknowledges us when we arrive, even if we're not at their table. Kathleen always warmly welcomes us also. It's a great place for dinner and to see local folks we don't run into that often."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "This was a very good dinner; soup, salad and a delicious pasta entee. It was all very high quality with the usual excellent, attentive service."
    Dined on 3/4/2014
  • "Offers a diverse menu of Italian classics. Carbonara was good, much better with more seasoning. Would definitely come back with my wife for another date night dinner, special occasion or otherwise."
    Dined on 2/26/2014
  • "This place was BYOB and had great food. I had Veal Toscano and the appetizer I had was really good. I think the service could have been more attentive, specifically in regards to refilling my drink (water & ice tea), but other than that, the service was good."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Food was delicious and our waiter was energetic and personable."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "My husband and I enjoyed a lovely, delicious Valentine's Day lunch at Avanti's. It was our first time at the restaurant. The ambiance was wonderful, complete with elegant, delicate decorations for the special occasion day. My immediate thought was that I'd like to return to the restaurant at nighttime for a dinner date. The food was very flavorful and just right in portion size. We had an enjoyable lunch and I look forward to dining again at Avanti!"
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Really enjoyed everything, my only complaint was that I asked twice to have my wine opened and the server never obliged. I came with a White and a Red, red was opened, but she did not open the white. After 2 inquiries, I gave up and just drank the red. Other than this, which was probably just an oversight, I would definitely go back. The food was great, romantic atmosphere, and great variety on the menu"
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "I've had lunches and dinners here; always +4 stars on the food. This last time was no exception. The roasted chicken was really great."
    Dined on 2/6/2014
  • "Tried this restaurant after hearing many many fantastic reviews about food. Food was absolutely great and best part of the experience. Everything we ordered was excellent! Restaurant is very small but quaint in its own way .. hence, very noisy (tables very close together). Only real negative was the service. Our waitress was an older woman who looked like she hated her job and just wanted to go home. Owner came over to table later to greet us which was nice. Then he and the entire staff sat down to eat dinner at a table in the main dining room…granted we were the only ones left in the restaurant but …. Overall, I have mixed emotions about the experience. Would go back again for the food alone and hope for better service experience."
    Dined on 2/1/2014
  • "Consistently fabulous. Our favorite "go to" spot. Never disappoints."
    Dined on 1/24/2014
  • "The fish special was excellent. The white fish was cooked to perfection."
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "The food options for a small place were excellent. The salad with the meal was just enough - not too much not too little. The meal portions for lunch were fantastic. Even the list of desserts were enjoyable. We ordered a few and shared amoung the 6 of us for lunch."
    Dined on 1/17/2014
  • "Avanti is welcoming and cozy. The staff is gracious. My friend and I wanted to catch up on each other's lives before dinner and our waitress gave us all the time we needed before ordering. We shared an appetizer of mussels mezzaluna; it was incredible, the broth had basil and tomatoes in it and we could have made a meal of the mezzaluna alone. The chef likes rich cream sauces. The brandy cream sauce over chicken was good but so rich I took half home. There are plenty of lighter saute sauces to choose from if you're not in the mood for crream. The fish dish choices look very good, but are pricey. Overall, though, the cost is very reasonable and the quality is very good. BYOB"
    Dined on 1/15/2014
  • "Great Italian in a cozy setting. BYOB. Service is always great. And the lighting and ambience makes it special."
    Dined on 1/10/2014