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  • Bencotto Italian Kitchen

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Bencotto Italian Kitchen
Bencotto Italian Kitchen

Bencotto Italian Kitchen Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.lovebencotto.com
  • Email: info@lovebencotto.com
  • Phone: (619) 450-4786
  • Hours of Operation:
    Tuesday- Wednesday- Thursday-Sunday: 11.30 am to 9 pm (depending on business)

    Friday- Saturday: 11.30 am to 10 pm (depending on business)
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Executive Chef: Fabrizio Cavallini
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: The second floor mezzanine is available for private parties and events. Available for full and partial buyout.

    We do not charge rent for space.

    "The Olive Tree Room" is an additional private room on the first floor available for private lunch and dinner up to 16 guests.
  • Private Party Contact: Valentina Di Pietro: valentina@lovebencotto.com x

Getting there

  • Cross Street: India Street/Kettner Blvd.
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Valet Parking sponsored by Little Italy Association.
    Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Sunday: from 5 pm to 9 pm
    Friday & Saturday: 5 pm to 10 pm
A word from Bencotto Italian Kitchen

Bencotto offers 100% honest Northern Italian cuisine.

We are proud to offer 15 kinds of different hand-made pasta, fresh and hand-crafted 12 hours a day.

"Bencotto" means cooked well: this is what authentic Italian food is about.
Our menu is based on simplicity. It tastes as it should and would in Italy.

Bencotto offers two different eating environments: guests can either enjoy their meal at our “kitchen-esque” bar downstairs, or they can relax in the intimate low-ceiling dining area upstairs. The décor creates a clean and sophisticated atmosphere, where old-world charm and warmth blend with contemporary appeal.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerItalian
Diner Reviews
  • "Bencotto was very busy on a weeknight. Lots of noise and people. Food was good to excellent, with especially good pasta. Service was fine, and the overall experience is fine."
    Dined on 4/10/2014
  • "Bencotto Italian Kitchen was an excellent dining experience. I made online reservations and when we arrived, we were promptly seated. Within 3 minutes the waitress was there asking if we had been there before. Since it was our first time, the waitress began to explain the specials and the popular items on the menu. She was very knowledgeable and listened to all our questions. She then took drink orders. We did have to wait a few minutes (another 5) for the bread and drinks to come but it was worth the wait. The bread was good and plentiful. The appetizer was stuffed zucchini and it was excellent. Our orders came shortly after finishing our appetizer and the food was excellent. I highly recommend Bencotto."
    Dined on 4/8/2014
  • "Contemporary, modern feel to an Italian restaurant. Gnocchi verdi with salmon sauce was delicious! Bread & (bland) olive oil to dip it in were not particularly tasty."
    Dined on 4/6/2014
  • "This time I have to say the experience was not as good as previous ones. Our appetizer was cold; the pumpkin ravioli were drowning in sauce; Just not up to par."
    Dined on 4/3/2014
  • "Amazing food, interior, service. So good, we went back for more the night after!"
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "The specializes in home made pasta. I had ravioli stuffed with crab with a lobster cream sauce. My wife had a pesto gnocchi. They were both simple perfection. For dessert we shared a pistachio semifredo that was one of the best desserts I have ever had. I'm looking forward to coming back to try the rest of the menu."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "Overall. Great experience. Amazing food. Outstanding service and exceptional food preparation time. Our meals were brought out less than ten minutes after we ordered. Simply great."
    Dined on 3/21/2014
  • "All the pasta that the four of us tried was excellent but the pesto was the best I've ever had. The ravioli was also exceptional - the thinnest pasta wrapped around an amazing filling. Not to be missed!"
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "Just right. We really liked the pasta and alternative toppings. This place is definitely one of SD's best Italian options and as you know, we have MANY Italian restaurants."
    Dined on 3/13/2014
  • "I'm a big foodie, and often find it difficult to find places in SD that truly have great food. I'm from Boston, a town that had phenomenal food in all directions. Been to Bencotto several times, the restaurant never disappoints. I would recommend this place to PASTA LOVERS. Portions are good, pricing is reasonable for the quality of food. Pasta dishes will run you around $16-20ish dollars, but again, I would much rather pay a little more to enjoy what I'm eating. Tried some of their appetizers, all very good but have yet to try any of their"meat dishes". Great place for a glass a wine on the weekday (if you can find a spot to squeeze in FYI..you NEED to make reservations at this place). The ambiance is great, very simple, modern and chic."
    Dined on 3/12/2014
  • "Honestly, I was truly looking forward to an excellent meal. I did not get it. The eggplant, and particularly the thick red sauce on it, was far too salty, and tasted like it might have been processed in a factory before it was canned. The squid ink pasta was better, but definitely not excellent. The main waiter assigned to our was not adequately available (and I am someone who usually wants to be left alone more than tended to) and just had a strange attitude. There was another waiter, with a hipster moustache and a great smile, however, who eventually jumped in and was quite pleasant. Wine list is not impressive. We had a similar experience at this restaurant's sister about a year ago."
    Dined on 3/9/2014
  • "Hostesses were rude when we arrived 10 minutes before our reservation, saying they can only seat us closer to our reservation time, even though we were simply checking in. They then seated us 20 minutes after the reservation time and nobody came to our table for quite a while. They weren't apologetic at all and made it seem like they were doing us a favor by getting us a table. I had heard it was a great place but all of our plates were pretty ordinary. Nothing special."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "Sat outside on a warm day and had a great sunset so can't say what it is like on the inside. Food above average for Italian. Wine too expensive but that's getting to be the norm."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "The food was good, not over the top like their PRICES, outrageous! There is no lunch menu, if you go for lunch you are paying dinner prices. The waitress took our order, but our food was delivered and serviced by the busboy because our waitress also seemed to be working the bar. We felt this was very strange. Our waitress showed up again at the end with the bill to work on "her" tip (?)! Strange!"
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Had been trying to go here for over a year and it finally happened - def lived up to my expectations and then some! Was really in the mood for chicken but decided to get a pasta instead and so glad I did. Literally the best pasta I've ever eaten! I got ravioli and the husband got lasagna. Both so delicious and the pasta just cooked perfectly! So fresh, no box pasta will ever compare. Service was quick, friendly, and on point. Constantly trading out used plates, glasses, cutlery for new ones and some great recommendations on the wine list. Oh and don't forget to have dessert! The semifreddo cafe mousse was to die for! The fact that its partially frozen makes it taste like gelato. Heaven!"
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Really enjoyed the food! Very, very fresh Caesar salad. Great pasta. Nice experience overall."
    Dined on 1/9/2014
  • "We enjoyed it so much we cancelled another reservation so we could return. The gnocchi stuffed with Gorgonzola is a must have!"
    Dined on 2/25/2014
  • "We were excited to go based on ratings, a recommendation & menu. The menu sounds great but was an overall forgettable food experience (flavourless). The highlight was the marinara sauce on the meatballs, which is a basic anywhere. Had better food at 'holes in the walls'. Perhaps the chef didn't try the tasteless food before putting it out of the kitchen! Will remember it in the 'won't go back' way..maybe we hit an off day."
    Dined on 2/21/2014
  • "This was our first visit to Bencotto. This Little Italy eatery is attractively decorated with a stylish urban ambiance, but the menu was limited and--I'm sad to say--our entrees were disappointing. The shortribs were dry and overcooked. The cioppino's fish was not fresh and the amount of seafood was lacking, though the broth was nicely seasoned. As we looked over what other diners chose it became apparent that the house specialty was the pasta, on which we heard positive commentary. Service was attentive, pleasant, and timely. Prices were moderate and wine list was sufficient. I think we will try Bencotto again for pasta but--based on this first try--I'd say there are better options for your money in Little Italy."
    Dined on 2/4/2014
  • "After eating at the highly acclaimed Bencotto Restaurant on Saturday, February 15th, I would probably sum it up by saying that I had a decent meal but wouldn't eat there again. As an Italian-American who grew up in NY/NJ, I felt that there was no "Italian Atmosphere", and that they were trying to hard to be the "It" trendy place. I had the cheese sampler and proscuitto appetizers (2 separate items) which were very small portions, so small as if I was eating in a French restaurant! They have decent wines by the glass...The highlight of my meal was clearly the home-made pasta which was excellent, although not enough in itself to make me want to experience Bencotto over again."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "Food was very good. The white sauces for the pasta could have been a little bit more flavorful."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "They calamari in a light broth is to die for. So popular, reservations are a must. Try it, share several dishes, you will be sure to find your favorite."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Enjoyed our time in Little Italy/San Diego. This find of a gem was fantastic and worth the taxi cab away from the convention area. Taxi back to hotel was easy to find as there are many cruising around Little Italy dropping off or picking from the many restaurants in the area. We went on a Friday night, had reservations and did not have to wait long. The hostesses and our waitress were very friendly and accommodating. We liked that they continuously cleared our table and refilling our water....never had to ask. The food was excellent. I had the squid ink homemade tartalle, It was to die for. For someone who was not hungry when we arrived, I sure cleaned the plate pretty well...spotless :-) Highly recommend this restaurant."
    Dined on 2/7/2014
  • "Little Italy has many Italian restaurants to choose from, "something for everybody!" I recommend Bencotto's as one you don't want to miss! The service, food, energy, and ambiance make for a memorable dining experience! My wife and I have now been back on 3 different occasions and each time come away with a smile on our face!"
    Dined on 2/11/2014
  • "Everything we ordered was outstanding! Our waitress made great recommendations as well. The pastas are out of this world and brought us back to living in Italy. Highly recommend this place to anyone looking for great Italian food!"
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "All dishes were superb except the pumpkin ravioli which was a disappointment. Wine was excellent as well. Loved the appetizers...fried olives and zucchini flowers......great!"
    Dined on 2/6/2014
  • "Everything we had was excellent. We liked the idea you could combine pasta, sauce, and meat or fish of your own choosing. Our waitress was from Northern Italy near Trieste and gave us a good suggestion for an espresso stop in NYC closer to our home. The special wine of the day was so good I wrote down what it was...."
    Dined on 2/2/2014
  • "We love this place. Went on Sunday before the opera. We've been several times before and never had a bad or even average meal. There is a small sidewal patio that is nice also. Only downside we have run into is being put on the upper level inside and it's hot and noisy upstairs. I think they only use that space when it gets crowded."
    Dined on 2/2/2014
  • "Went here for sons birthday, he's wanted to try this place for a long time. Very briefly food was very good, service was not... We never were told the specials, service was beyond slow which was disappointing since there was not that many people there. We waited over 10 mins after we sat down before we even placed a drink order. Everyone in our party ordered a basic pasta dish which took over 30 mins from order to service. We where never offered a desert menu until we asked for the check. We just got tired of waiting."
    Dined on 1/26/2014
  • "Food is mediocre, I felt like all the dishes lack flavor."
    Dined on 1/29/2014
  • "Our first time dining at Bencotto. It was a very good-excellent meal. The service was top notch! Looking forward to sharing this gem with friends."
    Dined on 1/28/2014
  • "The pasta was a highlight. We didn't care for the olives stuffed with meat appetizer we had, but are confident that there are other good choices. We found it a bit dry, over fried, and an odd flavor combo. The sauces were all excellent and both the fettuccini and ravioli we had were perfect."
    Dined on 1/24/2014
  • "Where do I begin? Our waitress Giada! Bellisimo!!!! Outstanding, friendly, attentive and very knowledgeable. Four of us for dinner. Two had the lasagna, two split the ravioli, I had the gnocchi with pesto and the house meatballs. Food was SUPERB!!!!! Nice wine list by glass and bottle. Back waiter for Giada, I neglected to get his name, was EXTREMELY attentive with bread, water refills, etc. Can't say enough good things about the place. Atmosphere is contemporary and not what one would expect from an Italian restaurant....but the food is so good and service excellent that we almost went back the next night. But...only in SD for 3 nights so had to try someplace different. Do go you will not be disappointed!!!!!!"
    Dined on 1/23/2014
  • "Excellent menu selections. Very friendly and efficient service. Atmosphere is a little cold and noisy but you know that going in."
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "This was our third visit and the last. The food is interesting but the authenticity of an Italian gem is non existent. We were seated and then ignored. Our waitress would be a more appropriate professional at Denny's. No class, no food knowledge, no social skills. The squid ink pasta was very good along with eggplant although both my husband and I were uncomfortable for a few hours after eating. Too bad we won't return; we expected a much better experience. We tried to explain upon leaving, the host people were disinterested."
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "We sat at the bar, the bartender was great, but the people who brought our food out seemed really inexperienced. They would try to hand me a requested extra plate, when I was holding another plate of food. Just set it down? Also mispronouncing food items and just seemed generally clueless."
    Dined on 1/16/2014
  • "I received a gift card to Bencotto and hadn't heard of before that. My girlfriend and I went and we were blown away. The decor is hip and cozy at the same time, they really utilize the space. The service was quick and efficient, our server friendly and knowledgeable. The food. was. amazing. We can't wait to go back!"
    Dined on 1/15/2014
  • "Bencotto has everything you're looking for in little Italy, an abundant wine list and freshly made pasta are only the highlights of the menu. Keep looking and you'll find fresh salads as well as chef created specials. The.Gnocchi is absolutely wonderful and you will notleave hungry. The chairs are plastic, and shaped by modern style, and you can't wait to get out of them after dessert. Great choice for a special occasion or a nice night out."
    Dined on 1/11/2014
  • "Whenever we come down to San Diego we make it a point to come here. Three of us had great meals, but the 4th had lasagna that was burned. Not good! Not the usual standard of Bencotto. Come on guys, you know not to serve burned food. Also our server was a little hard to find at times. Just really busy, they probably needed another one upstairs to help out. We'd still go there again but our friends who live in San Diego won't."
    Dined on 12/27/2013
  • "Had a great dinner here the other night. Good prices for the wine. Excellent Risotto Balls to start followed by fresh gnocchi that was some of the best I have ever had. The dessert menu looked amazing -- but there was no room left! Definitely would recommend"
    Dined on 1/2/2014