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Bencotto Italian Kitchen
Bencotto Italian Kitchen

Bencotto Italian Kitchen Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.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

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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Diner Reviews
  • "If you enjoy shouting across a table of four and being surrounded by loud diners this is the place for you! The decor is industrial = steel and concrete with no soft furnishings to absorb the incessant racket. We had requested a quiet table inside - I don't think such a thing exists! Our waiter was excellent but an over exuberant server kept trying to remove dishes before we had finished. We wanted to mop up every last bit of several delicious sauces. Loved the BYO wine option. The starters we shared were excellent and my main course dish - from the daily menu, extraordinary. I think the others only rated their food as average. The dessert menu looked exciting but we were too full to try it."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "Read several good reviews about Bencotto, so wanted to give it a try. Had an 8:00 reservation on a Thursday night. Table was ready, but no parking available nearby -- had to search 15 minutes to park. Once seated, waitress seemed to have too many tables to serve, as service was VERY slow. Took very long time to receive bread and place order. Server forgot to bring the wine we requested, and had to be reminded not only that we had ordered wine, but what we ordered. The wine arrived AFTER our meal arrived. The food was good but not great. The freshly made pasta was a noticeable difference, but the sauces, and the rest did not meet the expectations set by the other reviews. Would try someplace in Little Italy before coming back."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "the homemade pasta is extremely good and the sauce tastes like my grandma used to make"
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "Food was excellent! The bathroom situation is not ideal for such a busy restaurant. I would not expect to be waiting in line in a back hallway while I should be enjoying my meal. Great staff and service. Noise level was louder than I expected but not an issue."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Great food! One plate of pasta is enough to share. Order many items and share them. You won't be dissapointed. We come here every time we are in San Diego!"
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "This place lacks ambiance and the food was over-salted and lacked flavor. Our waitress replaced the words, "You're welcome. " with "Yah." and although she was pleasant, seemed disinterested overall. Being from out of town, I don't know what the building's previous use was, but little was spent on the remodel. White walls and plastic furniture and a very strange chopped up interior. They tout homemade pasta but unfortunately the four different dishes we ordered were so salty the pasta didn't matter. I would scratch this place off your list despite the rrviews."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "The food was really good. Our table ordered the calamari, lobster sauce ravioli, lasagna, and a beef dish. It was all very good. The atmospher is nice and the staff is excellent. I haven't tried enough of the other restaurants in the neighborhood to say it's better but I would go again. They did personally call me the next day to ask me if I enjoyed my dinner, that was nice of them to add a personal touch."
    Dined on 6/30/2014
  • "We'd heard good things about this restaurant but were sorely disappointed. The restaurant was packed and the noise level made conversation difficult. We started with the truffle soufflé which was dense instead of moist. My husband had the lamb shank which while flavorful was dry and the edges overcooked. I had the squid ink pasta with pink sauce which was very average. The shrimp were flavorless and the sauce bland like a can of tomato sauce with a bit of cream in it. When we got the bill there was a comment from another guest on one of the included coupons that said "osso buco was tough. Needs more braising to be authentic." We just looked at each other and laughed."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "Pasta lovers will love the menu options. Great wine list and good desserts. The place is small and is typically busy."
    Dined on 6/25/2014
  • "I love seafood, so I ordered cioppino. The tomato base had a good flavor, albeit not a hint of seafood. Although the cioppino had a generous amount of fish and shrimp, it was all overcooked. The frozen cioppino at Trader Joe's is better. My date had the tagliatelle bolognese. She thought it was fabulous. We ordered the stuffed squash blossoms from the specials menu, but they were out of them - even though we were there before 6 PM. So, we tried the stuffed, fried olives, which were good."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "Truly great restaurant!!! Food was amazing and service was top notch. Definitely a place to plan in your vacation. If you're local, lucky you!"
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "Excellent food. A favorite spot for Italian. We have never had a bad meal and last night was no exception. I entertained an out of town business colleague and Bencotto was definitley a hit. Exellent Manhattan. Excellent gnocchi. Attentive service. I can't wait for my next visit."
    Dined on 6/16/2014
  • "I've been to Bencotto a few times, but had forgotten how good their pasta is. I will definitely be returning and would recommend to anyone that is looking for a romantic date spot."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "Bencotto was a wonderful experience from the hostess and server to our delicious meal. We tried the fried risotto as well as their lobster/crab ravioli and lamb ragu specials. Everything was timely and quite tasty. The best part of the night was dessert - I seriously think their tiramisu was the best I've ever had. Highly recommend."
    Dined on 6/8/2014
  • "We had an early reservation at 5:00. They let us enjoy a glass of wine before ordering apps only. We were able to have the apps and a second glass of wine before ordering dinner without the feeling of being rushed out. I really appreciated this. All of the food was good. Great wine selection. Patient staff. Wonderful dining experience. "
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "Authentic Italian food, and varied menu complimented by a nice beverage selection. Excellent presentation and attentive, friendly service. Not cheap, but a good bet nonetheless."
    Dined on 6/5/2014
  • "The food was wonderful (squash blossoms stuffed with ricotta were amazing) and service outstanding. Will be back soon!"
    Dined on 6/3/2014
  • "Taking form the Japanese, I use the word umami to classify my whole experience. That includes food, drinks, ambiance and service. Bencotto deliveres Italian umami. Simply excellent. "
    Dined on 5/24/2014
  • "Don't pass this gem up! You will have a wonderful dining experience. Great customer service, delicious food, and elegant environment. Enjoy!"
    Dined on 5/30/2014
  • "The food tasted liike you were transported to Italy. The menu included a huge variety of pasta combinations that you could combine with a sauce of your choice. The pastas are homemade and delectble. The Lamb Ragu that I had is a rare find in American restaurants, my husband's lasagna "melt in his mouth." Service was friendly and deserts marvelous. "
    Dined on 5/29/2014
  • "Bencotta is like a comfortable dining room in a friends home. The food and service have been always outstanding."
    Dined on 2/11/2014
  • "Bencotta was recommended to me as a great Italian place. For me Italian is ALWAYS about the food - which sadly was good, but just that average. The service however was excellent - David was our server - he was engaging, attentive and made the evening very nice. The appetizers were amazing - the Prosciutto was shaved to perfection; we also had the aroncini which were great and then an order of meatballs. We all (party of 4) ordered pasta - the sauces did not live up to the excellent pasta. Bencotta is good in a pinch but I wouldn't seek it out again. "
    Dined on 5/22/2014
  • "I took my fiance for her birthday. The server was good at first then at the end he wasn't coming to table. Had empty waters. He will pass through our table with No eye contact. Also I didn't get my discount for dessert special occasion. "
    Dined on 5/22/2014
  • "Bencotto has been a favorite of our for the past few years. The last time there we felt that the service, food and ambience had lost its edge, but this visit confirmed it. We had a table against a column inside the door that barely accommodated our party of three, despite having made reservations six weeks in advance. A special request for pasta with pesto was delivered wrong, and ended up as a bowl pesto with a few noodles. Enough pesto to serve the entire restaurant. Our waiter seemed uninterested in what was wrong with the order. Not sure that we will go back, but if we do, it will not be with the expectation of the great meal, service and ambience we used to expect."
    Dined on 5/17/2014
  • "We had a very nice dinner, the menu was interesting with unique items. The only negative is that it is not easy to find a parking spot. Also it might get real noisy if they are really busy. It was a very good choice."
    Dined on 5/13/2014
  • "We had a party of 8 who thoroughly enjoyed the food. Most plates didn't have a morsel on them when we finished. If I lived in San Diego, I would definitely go back. Parking on a Saturday night was painful. We found a parking garage for $20. The valet parking was 6 deep. One of our party found a spot on the street 4 blocks away."
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "I have been coming here for 3 years and the food is still good. I live in Los Angeles and when ever I am in San Diego I always come here for Dinner! Great ambience, Great People who work here and Very Affordable!"
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "Food was fabulous and so fresh! Had the squid ink pasta and shrimp, wonderful! Waiter was knowledgeable and friendly."
    Dined on 5/9/2014
  • "Having dined at the adjoining restaurant I wasn't expecting excellence. Bencotto over delivered/ Excellent pasta and eggplant starter. My guest enjoyed the salmon. We will return"
    Dined on 5/7/2014
  • "Excellent food, excellent service. This is THE place we go to when visiting Little Italy, or San Diego in general."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "The San Daniele prosciutto simply melts in the mouth, gnoccho fritto is puffy and flaky, tasting of good oil. Saffron riso fritto is outstanding with its accompanying bolognese sauce. Zucchini flowers were delicately fried, enveloping a fresh cheese filling and nicely presented. The fried stuffed olives Ascolana were nice but need more careful pitting; my husband bit down on one but no damage. I would prefer a stuffing which would fill the olive a bit more and be assertive in flavor, such as ground pork or veal with Parmagiano and herbs. My favorite zucchini flowers are fried simply, in pastella, so one tastes the flower itself. The sbrisolona is outstanding for dessert. Service was attentive."
    Dined on 5/4/2014
  • "My date and I found this restaurant for our prom night, and my experience was far better than I even expected! The meatballs were delicious, the sauces were full of flavor, the staff was pleasant, and the prices were fair. The ambiance was wonderful and the atmosphere felt "cool". I especially loved all of the decor, mainly the trees. Bencotto got our Prom night started, and started RIGHT!"
    Dined on 4/26/2014
  • "Great food, reasonable prices, overall nice place in little Italy."
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "We were a party of 4 for a late lunch on Saturday afternnon. The service was excellent, and the food was outstanding. I would highly recommend this restaurant to anyone who enjoys delicious Italian food. This will be a new favorite place to dine."
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "unfortunately, I really looked forward to dining here. My boyfriend & I went for valentine's day which may have meant sub par service but after all the recognition I'd seen I really expected an amazing Italian meal, being in the heart of little Italy with apparently hand cut pasta (however already being disappointed with appetizers and the overall impression from looking at others' orders we decided to leave). Pizza by the slice seemed better than what we were in for there and as a bonus less expensive. We ate lobster bisque which had chewy, overcooked lobster in it and a fried veggie option that I believe was stuffed with cheese. We didn't finish either, had our wine bagged up, and left. I will not be going back. "
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Only recently discovered this gem, and have already enjoyed three visits. The service is consistently excellent, the homemade pastas are so delicious, and there is a nice wine list. It can be a little noisy in the main room downstairs, but this last time we were seated in a small area just beyond the entrance, and it was lovely. So nice for chatting with friends over a luxurious dinner. The desserts are amazing -- save room!"
    Dined on 4/17/2014
  • "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