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Givanni's
Givanni's

Givanni's Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.givannis.net
  • Phone: (319) 338-5967
  • Hours of Operation: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00 pm. Late Night Bar Friday and Saturday 11pm-12:30pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian, American
  • Executive Chef: Isaac Onofre
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, View, Wine
  • Catering: Our sister restaurant The Bread Garden caters all items on Givanni's menu.
  • Private Party Facilities: Upstairs area seats up to 50 people. Parties of 30 or more are considered a private party. Semi-private parties have no rental fee but minimum spending is required.
  • Private Party Contact: Manager on Duty (319) 338-5967

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Clinton
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: 3 parking ramps located within one block of the restaurant.
A word from Givanni's
Givanni's offers the highest quality steak, seafood, pork and chicken. We also serve only home- made pasta and each dish is made fresh when ordered. Complement your entree with a glass of wine from our extensive wine list.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNeighborhood Gem
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Diner Reviews
  • "We had an enjoyable and tasty meal, grant it more Americano than italiano. A little overpriced, they would do better in a college town if they toned their prices down. They even made our favorite cocktail, Negroni, after we explained it is equal parts of Vermouth, Gin and Campari, though the serving was 1/3 what you normally get in Italy."
    Dined on 8/10/2014
  • "We went for our two favorite dishes. Chopino and Pasta La Jolla Very disappointing....my chopino tasted almost like the sauce was from a jar. Sauce for La Jolla was not like expected either. We did tell our waitress at the end because she was insistent about the food. We did not want to offend her as she took very good care of us as a waitress. We will not be returning."
    Dined on 8/7/2014
  • "Givanni's never fails to impress me. The crostini appetizer was unique and yummy. The Gnocchi entree has the best sauce ever. And the creme brulee was perfect. We will be back, again, many times."
    Dined on 8/2/2014
  • "Great place for a group to enjoy good food couple with an ample bar."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "My wife and I love Givanni's for special occasions. The food and service are always fantastic."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Everything we tried was delightful. The complimentary in-house-baked bread was flavorful with a moist crumb and a good crust; the roasted beet salad extraordinary, even for a person like me who doesn't normally care for beets; the mussels done to perfection and memorably flavorful; the pasta caprese marvelous, with just the right touch of heat from the red pepper. This is the sort of restaurant you beat a path to."
    Dined on 7/8/2014
  • "My first time there. The food was great, our server was excellent and most of all - it was quiet! We were a party of 6 and we could actually have a conversation and hear each other. My pet peeve is restaurants that have the music so loud that it is hard to hear what people at your table are saying. I will definitely go there again."
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "Givanni's is one of my favorites in Iowa City. Change of ownership only made the menu even better. Celebrated my 33rd anniversary over there and the owner was kind enough to treat us for dessert on the house. Will definitely go there again."
    Dined on 7/4/2014
  • "To the bartender: Here's how you make a Manhattan. Three shots whiskey, one shot sweet vermouth, pour over ice and shake. Add a cherry, strain and serve. The drink is not heavily diluted with water nor is it served over ice. How can a person tend bar who can't make a Manhattan? It's just one step more complicated than a vodka tonic! Food--okay. Service--very friendly but often AWOL. Water refill? Check? I guess they can get away with this in a college town."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "I have ordered the gnocchi for years - my favorite dish. I haven't been at the restaurant for a few years and ordered it at my last visit. Sadly it didn't taste anything like it used to. I guess they changed the sauce. Very disappointing. I will have to find a new favorite dish. Everything else was delicious, however."
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "We was sworthy and reserved but a great waiter. He was not abnoxious and checked on us fairly ofen. The food came out surprizingly quick. If I had more money I would go there more ofen."
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "The food was okay - not great, the taste was unimpressive. Some meals were overcooked others were cooked okay but pretty plain. We had higher expectations for our first experience at this restaurant. The final bad experience was lukewarm coffee for dessert! The wait staff tried to provide us a good experience, but the food was not something we would come back for any time in the future."
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "We eat at Givanni's each time we travel to Iowa City. The service and food are always outstanding. It is one of our favorites, and never fails to impress."
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "I went to Givanni's with my wife and daughter on a Friday evening at 6:00pm. The outdoor seating was packed and so was the bar. It was a bit noisy. We ordered the calamari appetizer first, and it came out quickly. It was served on a large plate, which mostly contained the sauces - there was very little calamari on the plate. We ordered Filet Mignon, Cioppino, and Chicken Parmesan for our main course. The Filet Mignon tasted good, but it was drenched in sauce. The pasta in the Cioppino and Chicken Parmesan were both overcooked, and drenched in way too much sauce. My wife and daughter were unsatisfied. Overall, we thought the quality of the food was sub-par. "
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "I have always loved the ambience of Givanni's, although I will admit I haven't been there for a long time. There are many great places to dine in Iowa City. My family member wanted to go to Givanni's to celebrate his birthday. I was disappointed with the service mostly. We were given bread to eat and dip, and no bread plates. It took a long time to get a server to greet us and ask about drinks. In general, the service was anything but special. The food...same. Not really special, like I remembered from before. In particular, the presentation was not what I remembered. It is a bit dark. Just a little more light would be nice. I don't will think of Givanni's as a place to celebrate special occasions in the future."
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "We hadn't been there in years and when we left, it left us wondering why! It was so enjoyable... from the cocktails to the food, and to top it all off, the service was great! We are already looking forward to our next visit!"
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "We've been going to Givanni's for 13+ years and have always loved it. Our dinner meals were excellent this time as well, but we were extremely disappointed by the meal for our child. He ordered chicken fingers for $6.00. There were three chicken fingers, each of which were about the length and width of putting your first two fingers together. Not only that, they seemed to have a fishy flavor to them. Plenty of fries, which were good. Our server was very friendly and attentive. We only mentioned our complaint to the hostess as we left."
    Dined on 4/5/2014
  • "By far the best Italian food restaurant in Iowa City as well as one of the top three restaurants in Iowa City."
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Unfortunately, Givanni's has taken a turn for the worse. I've loved Givanni's for almost as long as it has been open and look forward to eating there for special occasions. Not anymore. It has been overrun by loud, rude college students, poor service, and is no longer a fine dining experience. Regretfully, I will not try Givanni's again. There are other upscale Italian restaurants here that do a far better job at providing a pleasant dining experience."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "It seems as though portion sizes have decreased. Definitely less sausage in the pasta dish, fewer garnishes/extras on other dishes. The bread for the table is not the quality that it used to be. We found the service to be very slow. We ordered a second glass of wine midway through our meal and did not receive it until our meal was complete. We were told they were short on wine glasses because of a wedding upstairs. We have been there before and heard slow service attributed to a rehearsal dinner upstairs. It would seem if the reservations are made, then management should plan accordingly to accommodate all of their guests. Still good; however, seems to be declining."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "We had steaks that were first rate, prepared to perfection, presented so they looked and tasted delicious. I've never had a bad meal or experience here."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Quality of food has deteriorated significantly since the change in ownership. At our last meal the appetizer, fried mozzarella, was served lukewarm and was cool before we finished. The entre, walleye special, was over cooked so much so that it was burnt around the edges and then served with a mound of potatoes that were severely over salted. There was no other flavor apparent other than the salt. The dread, once a treat at this restaurant , is thinly sliced, dry and tasteless. All in all very disappointing compared to years past and definitely not worth the price."
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "This restaurant is one of my favorites in the Iowa City area. We love to come here in the summertime and dine outside. In cold weather, the inside is charming. The food is always good. We have always had a great expereience here."
    Dined on 2/6/2014
  • "I ordered the Vegetable tower before but was disappointed with it this time. As I remember before there was a large portabello mushroom and several vegetables in the tower. This was mainly large slices of winter texture tomato, crisp red onions. (There were other veggies too but not the usual quality.) The wine however, was excellent!"
    Dined on 1/28/2014
  • "I love Givanni's. The food is always amazing and the quiet, romantic atmosphere makes it the perfect date spot. Our waiter wasn't as good on my last visit, which is odd because their service is usually perfect. As long as this was a one night thing and not a trend, I will be coming back every chance I get!"
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "It is a nice atmosphere even though we were the only ones there for a while. You leave hungry because portions are small. They look elegant but small for our taste."
    Dined on 12/21/2013
  • "Good food. Nice people. Attentive service; but not overbearing."
    Dined on 12/8/2013
  • "We were excited to take out family and friends while visiting Iowa City. Givanni's provided just the right combination of high-quality food and service for a great evening. A variety of dishes were ordered and all were excellent."
    Dined on 11/22/2013
  • "We were in Iowa City for a football game and wanted to step up the dining experience beyond the sports bar & student favorite scene. The food was excellent, the service was even better. And we really liked the unusual Pappageorge Hymes interior design and the original art work on the walls. If you find yourself in Iowa City, this restaurant is worth a try."
    Dined on 11/22/2013
  • "I thought the food was well prepared and arrived at our table in a timely manner. The ambience was dark and the food was hard to see, at least at our table. Part of the enjoyment should be the visual presentation of the food, which is lost in the dark here. The noise level was high, as the music was a constant drowning of the club genre. I am sure it is meant to be "hip" but I do not recall seeing a dance floor anywhere in the space. I would not hesitate to go back if asked by someone, but I would recommend trying out different place first."
    Dined on 11/16/2013
  • "The food was fabulous and the atmosphere cozy and friendly. Prices were reasonable. Wine list better than expected for a small restaurant. We will definitely return."
    Dined on 11/14/2013
  • "We have lived here for nearly 25 years and have always enjoyed the excellent food--Italian or not. Adding to the excellent food, the service is consistently top notch. Being given the opportunity to taste a wine selection (from a good list of offerings) is a nice service."
    Dined on 11/1/2013
  • "The food was good, however the service was extremely poor. There was insufficient wait staff working and it really impacted our dining experience. The previous reviews commented on this but we went anyways. I would suggest going else where if you value quality service."
    Dined on 10/25/2013
  • "To expensive for what it is. Iowa City needs a better selection of resturants."
    Dined on 10/24/2013
  • "Five of us went out to dinner at Givanni's and all of us liked our meals. The service was very good and we enjoyed the ambience."
    Dined on 10/24/2013
  • "We went to Givanni's for a special occasion and the food and service were excellent. It is one of our favorite restaurants in Iowa City. We have been part of large groups or just the two of us and each time was a great experience."
    Dined on 10/19/2013
  • "There were plenty of choices in this extensive menu, and the presentation of the food was creative and colourful. I found the beet salad to be fresh and delicious. My steak was also tasty, but not as rare as I had ordered. My husband's chicken Marsala was also over cooked, but, again, tasty. Our dining partners very much enjoyed the fish they ordered. The creme caramel was especially creamy, with just the right amount of crunch. The staff was friendly and helpful."
    Dined on 10/13/2013
  • "What can I say? My wife and I went to Givanni's before a concert at the Englert Theater. Granted, it was early, but the staff was excellent. The manager was very cordial and professional. The food was outstanding. It is was the second time we have eaten there and it will become our must-stop for dining when back in Iowa City."
    Dined on 10/6/2013
  • "We make it a point to enjoy Givanni's each time we are in Iowa City! It is a favorite of ours! The food is excellent; service is great and the ambiance is cozy. We're faithful about making reservations and have never had a problem getting in. You haven't been to Iowa City if you haven't dined at Givanni's!"
    Dined on 10/5/2013
  • "Givannis has been a favorite of mine for years. Givannis always gives us professional service, excellent food and menus, and a casual yet upscale ambience. It is a wonderful spot in downtown Iowa City."
    Dined on 9/28/2013