CUCINA urbana
CUCINA urbana

CUCINA urbana

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.cucinaurbana.com/home
  • Phone: 6192392222x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Dinner:
    SUNDAY | 4:30p - 9p
    MONDAY| 5p - 9p
    TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY, THURSDAY | 5p – 10p
    FRIDAY + SATURDAY | 5p – 10:30p dinner | 10:30p – 12a pizza + vasi

    Lunch:
    TUESDAY - THURSDAY | 11:30a-2p
    FRIDAY | 11:30a-5p
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American, Italian
  • Executive Chef: Joe Magnanelli
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: URBAN KITCHEN CATERING provides four star, stunning events with menus unique to your occasion. For more information check the URBAN KITCHEN CATERING link on our website www.urbankitchengroup.com or call Alison at 619.239.2222 extension 2. Or if interested in restaurant buyout opportunities, please contact Tiffany Tassano at 619.239.2222 extension 1.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 5th Avenue
  • Parking: Valet
A word from CUCINA urbana
Welcome to CUCINA urbana, a casual Italian American Neighborhood Kitchen and Wine Shop located in the heart of Banker's Hill. The menu highlights the cuisines of various Italian regions with a distinct California ‘farm to table’ flair for which the Urban Kitchen Group has become known. Chef Joe Magnanelli is excited to preview his Italian heritage and create dishes that are fresh, simple and seasonal. Items include: antipasti, artisan pizza, pasta and piatti. Enjoy wine by the glass or visit the Wine Spectator award-winning wine shop and select a bottle from over 100 selections at retail price ($8 corkage fee applies). The space features contemporary elements and vintage artifacts creating the feel of a modern Italian kitchen combined with the history and comfort of an old rustic country farmhouse. A focus on raw, sustainable material is evident with much product coming from recycled/reclaimed local sources.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerHot Spot
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNotable Wine List
  • Diners' Choice WinnerItalian
CUCINA urbana reviews from OpenTable diners
390 reviews since June 3, 2014
Overall Rating4.5
  • Food4.5
    Service4.4
  • Ambiance4.4
    Noise LevelEnergetic
93% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (272)hot spot (204)neighborhood gem (201)special occasion (190)notable wine list (189)good for groups (129)vibrant bar scene (123)romantic (103)great for lunch (56)late-night find (34)kid-friendly (18)great for brunch (11)great for outdoor dining (3)scenic view (3)Show More
  • Great birthday dinner
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    We had a wonderful meal. The squash blossoms were too die for. They brought a special dessert for my daughter's birthday. Excellent service. It is my favorite place to eat!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointed this time
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    The food was excellent as usual and our waiter was fine. We love Cucina Urbana and made this reservation to celebrate my husbands retirement (last day of work!) for "just the two of us". When we arrived, the two hostesses stated that they did not have our reservation even though they new my husbands first name? They barely looked at us and said they could seat us anyway and we were taken to a table next to the waiters entrance. Needless to say, it wasn't wait we had expected.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Post airport pickup of J
    Andy123VIP
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    Late night dine w J, after flying home from San Antonio.. Oops, forgot it was rest week. Limited menus options, no worries. Staff was accommodating. Even waived corkage for sharing.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Anniversary disappointment
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    My husband & I have loved Cucina Urbana for the past 5 years & have always gone to celebrate special occasions, as we did on 09/27 for our 6 year wedding anniversary. I can only say that we were both so disappointed that I don't know if we'll be back for a long time. The service was awful, at one point I didn't even have silverware to eat my food. And I had wanted a second glass of wine with my dinner, but wasn't given a chance to ask. The food was lack luster, especially our dessert and because we were celebrating our anniversary I had wanted to enjoy a glass of champagne as well but instead of being asked how dessert was, I was given the bill. I left disappointed & frustrated that we had spent our anniversary not enjoying ourselves.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Just okay
    WineandDine
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    We came here for restaurant week and had heard such great things before hand. With a reservation they were 20 minutes late seating us didn't offer a refreshment or bread while we waited. The waitress was incredibly rude, we were expecting someone to tell us about the menu choices since this was restaurant week. Instead she didn't offer any description of the choices, didn't ask us for our drink order and walked away mid sentence. The support staff was fairly attentive but by the end of the evening our water pitcher had been removed and was never returned so our glasses were empty, the check was dropped in the middle of desert and we left deciding never to come back because it just wasn't worth it.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Won't be coming here anymore
    Sadfacediner
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    30 minutes wait after our reservation time before being seated. Hostess/bussers/bartender were great, our server was terrible. Didn't check on us, didn't run food, abnormally long wait before picking up check. Barely spoke to us at all the entire night. The entree (short rib par.) has gotten significantly worse than years before. More salty and less subtle red wine flavor. Virtually no meat in the dish as well.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not Our Favorite
    LuLuVIP
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    We had heard such wonderful things about this restaurant so we decided to try it during restaurant week. The decor is lovely and lively - however, the food was overzealous in being eclectic for Italian food. We should have chosen the pizza - we had the sea bass and rib eye. The bass had way too many white beans and had a breading on it - not so good. The rib eye was just that - rib eye - could get that anywhere. The cheese plate had one blue cheese on it and the rest was some kind of ricotta in a little bowl and some fruit concoction - not good! Disappointed overall.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • cucina
    cafedinner
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    We have been to this place several times and it was always good. This time was different, the food was bad. I had the short ribs and it was mostly fat on the short rib. I major disappointment, especially since it was my wife's birthday.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Sony
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Great choices for Restaurant Week lunches. I chose the $23 option and as a vegetarian I was elated to be able to have their carbonara pasta dish without the usual ham! Excellent Kale Ceasar Salad too.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Cucina Urbana
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    Had a 7:30 reservation during restaurant week which is always fairly difficult to accommodate at CU. Had an awesome table in the middle of the wine pantry where the noise level seemed significantly lower then the main dining hall. Surprisingly quick service, some of the better cheese/salami plates in SD, and a great restaurant week menu made this a great place to treat my father and younger sister for restaurant week. Would highly recommend Cucina Urbana to anyone who has not tried it. They also have a North County location now too.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Solid choice
    Shefri
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    The food here is very good and prepared with attention to taste, freshness and presentation. We enjoyed the truffle parmesan fries which were very crispy, the way fries should be. I had an outstanding entree of short ribs over pappardelle which was very nuanced with lovely fresh pasta. My husband was a bit less enthusiastic about the duck over polenta, although it was good. It is a bit on the noisy side for me although many may just find it to be just a vibrant vibe. I would definitely return and do not hesitate to recommend it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great food, Greater service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/23/2014
    I had completely forgotten about restaurant week and wanted to take my friend out for her birthday, luckily I was able to make a reservation last minute (thank you open table Gods) and the night was saved! Arrived on time and were sat within a few minutes by the very professional and friendly host. The person who walked us to our table was also very nice. Our server Kemper was great! He was very knowledgeable about the food and was able to narrow it down for me, as everything looked amazing. He always check in between courses and our wine/cocktails glasses were never empty, our water glasses were never empty either! Kemper brought out some gelattto and a champagne toast for my friend! How lovely! A happy birthday it was indeed. Thank you!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very good food
    laurels
    Dined on 9/23/2014
    The pizza and ragu boards are fantastic here. We came during restaurant week and prefer the options of the full menu, but it was still good. It is always a bit loud, but I still like the ambiance. The service is always very good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Anniversary Dinner
    Boltswin
    Dined on 9/23/2014
    Had an excellent meal. The ambiance was excellent for us, not too stuffy, but not too load either. Our server was very friendly, but made us feel like he was forgetting a couple of items we ordered. This was our first time visiting the restaurant, so it may be just how the meal flows there, but seems like a cheese appetizer we ordered should not have come out with our entrée. Not a big deal, but I felt like if I hadn't asked when it was going to be served we would not have received it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 9/22/2014
    Food was great, but we were seated for 25 mins before our server even came to the table. After ordering salad, pizza, and dessert it took about 20 mins per course. If patience is not your strong suit or are very hungry, I recommend trying some place else.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Tasty food and drinks
    coiptic
    Dined on 9/22/2014
    Yet another great experience at Cucina Urbana! I love their pizzas--thin crust with just enough give and just enough crunch--and the fun twists on typical toppings. Will be back for more!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Not worth it.
    Disappointed
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    With all the glowing reviews, we were excited to try Cucina Urbana. The atmosphere is comfortable and there is plenty of action. The food, however, is truly mediocre. We had the kale caesar which was bland and goopy. I had the puttanesca with shrimp on angel hair. The pasta was mushy and the sauce unremarkable. My wife had the cod which turned out to be the only good dish. My cheese plate had one piece of cheese on it and then some other unrecognizable items. Our server did not know the food very well and forget about the wine. When we told him our reactions to the food, he seemed truly uninterested. I cannot recommend this restaurant.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Average food
    kris
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    From the moment we stepped into the restaurant to when we left it was very lackluster and blah. The hostesses did not treat us with anything but indifference, they may have been too busy having a personal conversation. The waitress came to our table and her voice was a whisper, in a noisy restaurant it was very hard to hear her. Onto the food, the first time we visited Urbana when it was newer and a hotspot the food was much much better. This time it was bland unexciting and average. I doubt we will go back, there are too many new and more exciting spots to try.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Perfect choice before theater
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    Amazing creative decor matches the innovative menu! They also have a shuttle that drops off at The Old Globe Theater!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good
    tignino30
    Dined on 9/18/2014
    We like the food and the place is beautiful. However, the lack of attention for the server made the experience ok. She could have been more attentive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best meal we had in San Diego!
    healthyfoodieVIP
    Dined on 9/18/2014
    Cucina Urbana was highly recommended to us, and I'm so glad we made it in during a recent trip to San Diego. The food was amazing, and was the best meal we had on our trip! We had some of the best prosciutto ever on the charcuterie board, and fell in love with the homemade jams served alongside the cheeses. Our mains (whole fish and rib eye) were cooked and seasoned perfectly. And the fig semifreddo dessert was so unique and tasty! I'll be back next time I'm in town, for sure.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Winegeeks & Cocktail Afficianados
    JessicaVIP
    Dined on 9/17/2014
    We stopped in with a friend visiting from Boston, and found so many choices we could easily still be there! Our cocktails were refreshing (Summer in Milan), original (Stranded Sicilian with smoked pineapple gin), and classic (Cucinegroni). The stuffed squash blossoms rank among the best I've had, and we ordered bread to soak up the dressing for the beet salad. The Librandi Gaglioppo, an offbeat red wine we drank with dinner, paired perfectly with our mushroom pizza, bucatini, and risotto. We nearly passed on dessert, but opted for a walk after trying the roasted strawberry fregolata and the even more amazing chocolate nutella zeppole with passion fruit creme.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Dinner
    Eggbert747
    Dined on 9/17/2014
    Unfortunity the AC was not working well. Very hot inside. Food and servince was good as usual. Had trouble finding a non-Italian wine that was reasonalbly priced and decent. Will definitely bring my own wine in the future. Hopefully the weather will improve, and the AC will be working next time
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Culinary excellence!
    ehb365VIP
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    Our second visit to Cucina Urbana. Our server Antonio remembered exactly how I liked my cocktail without me saying a word. His suggestions and attentiveness was impeccable. Our guest were vegetarian, gluten free and one has a serious allergy to nuts. The staff made sure our preferences/food allergies were duly noted. The food was amazing, arrived at precisely the right time. Antonio's knowledge of wine and recommendation was spot on! I have pretty discerning taste. Great experience!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • So Glad We Went Here!
    TheBostonAnthonyVIP
    Dined on 9/11/2014
    Our server, Sarah, was outstanding. She realized we were out of town, first-time diners, and she walked us through the menu, answered all our questions, and laughed at our jokes. She had impeccable timing, never let our glasses get empty or our table get cluttered... and it made for a wonderful experience! She was such a positive, fun local and we really appreciated her all-around service excellence. The ricotta gnudi and foccacia with rosemary honey butter were both show-stoppers. The pizza was good but to be fair we're picky about pizza. The sauce was oddly sweet, almost too sweet. Quality meat toppings. Great crust! My wife's green garlic tagliatelle carbonara was excellent. The lasagna looked and tasted beautiful - a melange of meats!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Vrey loud music
    Noisy2
    Dined on 9/9/2014
    The music is very loud and it is hard to have a conversation. The music is chosen by the staff and does not have the clientele in mind. It should be instrumental. When someone is singing it is very distracting. Most of the people at Cucina for lunch are business professionals. They are not interested in rocking out!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Unusually bad experience for Cucina
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/8/2014
    We had a couples major food issues... There were no tomatoes on our "heirloom tomatoe" salad and the milk on our latte was curdled and sour. The waiter resolved both issues but seemed bothered. We asked for a beer list mid way through dinner which we never received.
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A great place
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/2/2014
    You will thank your self for going here. Great place!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great dining experience
    James
    Dined on 9/2/2014
    My only drawback is it took me two years to get here. Really like the menu and food was great. Service was fantastic.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Steve
    Dined on 9/2/2014
    We were celebrating my wife's birthday. The food was outstanding, but the service was even more exceptional! The complimentary desert and flutes of champagne were an unexpected (and very thoughful) treat at the end of our night! Thanks for making my wife's birthday such a fond memory!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • your Service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    I noted on line reservation that this is the surprise 40th birthday celebrations, we order to deserts you can't even put a candle on it. The restaurant manager walk passed us twice didn't even say hello. You did not make our party feel special at ALL. if you did, we would stay drink more wines. we had to rush out of their to go somewhere else. I will not celebrate any special occasion there no more. Your service is horrible!!!!!
    Special Features:
    notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • As always great service, and food.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    The food is so well priced and is always amazing. The service is usually on point and we always leave very happy with our experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, kid-friendly, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Simply the Best
    fitfoodie
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    My partner and I had visited Cucina Urbana a year prior to this visit upon a suggestion by a colleague while we were on vacation. It was quite possibly the best restaurant experience we had ever had and we could not wait to come back. A year later, it was just as spectacular. The food, ambience, service, everything is stellar. Now that we live on the west coast, hopefully it won't be a year before we visit again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great place to be
    Jules
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Really love this place. Always been told to try and finally did. I'm glad I did. Great ambiance, great food, great wine. Plan on goin a lot more now.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Spot
    JPReviews
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    We always love coming to this spot for date night. The food and ambiance are great! I highly recommend Cucina Urbana!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good food, reservations are a must!
    Lucy
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Cuccina Urbana is a hot spot here in San Diego, we were fortunate enough to get a same night reservation for 4 Friday night. We were seated right away, noise level is insane on a busy night but the ambiance and food is great. My only and biggest disappointment was feeling sort of lied to about the wine of my choice, I decided to start off with a bottle of bellacart brut and was told it was sold out...Well, it wasn't! I saw the bottles when I left and felt deceived by this as I was upsold to a different champagne. When I left I told a gentleman at the front how disappointed I was by it. Not sure if this is common for them to not honor their wine list in such a deceitful way. With that said, the restaurant has a great selection.
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • why would no one speak out?
    GrobeVIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Going to SD and what a fun and exciting place. Everything on the menu rocks. Staff are on point as is the food.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Cucina Exellente!
    dcapoVIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Amazing food, wine and great waiter/service. Love the wine pricing concept. Chicken liver pate' great and being gluten free got yummie crackers. The fresh fish was wonderful and simply prepared....Gluten Free pasta Amatratriaciana made me realize how much I missedDefinitely will go back when I am back in San Diego
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2004
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Friendly waiters, interesting menu, wonderful food
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • MalonekaVIP
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    Exceptional and creative menu with fresh ingredients. Ecoxcellent service. Server well versed on menu and wine list. We will be back!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.