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  • Ideale

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Ideale Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.idealerestaurant.com
  • Phone: (415) 391-4129
  • Hours of Operation: Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:30 PM - 10:30 PM, Friday - Saturday: 5:30 PM - 11:00 PM, Sunday: 5:00 PM - 10:00 PM
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Carte Blanche, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian, Pizzeria
  • Executive Chef: Maurizio Bruschi
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Delivery, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: Please contact us for more information.
  • Special Events & Promotions: We will open for large parties at lunch. Please contact us for details.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Vallejo
  • Public Transit: 1. Columbus Ave & Green St - (0.09 miles )
    2. Broadway & Grant Ave - (0.09 miles ) — Muni
    3. Columbus Ave & Broadway - (0.09 miles ) — Muni
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Ideale
"For an authentic Roman holiday without the airfare, this undiscovered North Beach gem is worth seeking out."
(Zagat)A bright, colorful Italian restaurant, Ideale is the modern version of a traditional Roman trattoria. It is "festive and boisterous...la vera cucina italiana."Ideale has been bringing a slice of Rome to North Beach for over 20 years with it's highly acclaimed chef, Maurizio Bruschi. Maurizio hails from four generations of Roman chefs, lovingly taught by his grandma, la Nonna Serafina. The pastas and breads are all homemade and the ingredients are hand-picked daily. The 2011 Zagat guide gave Ideale a 24 for food and wrote that the "Italian fare is the real deal...one of the few no tourist eateries in North Beach..excellent pasta and pizza..the service makes you feel like a friend..a delightful experience." Ideale has won numerous awards, including being listed in Zagat's "Best Italian Restaurants in America" and The Chronicle's "Best Pasta in North Beach."Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Diner Reviews
  • "Branzino was over-cooked, grilled vegetable entree insufficient quantity for a meal, and none of the dishes were hot enough. Place feels past its prime."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "We have been dining at Ideale for many years, but hadn't dined there for several. Were quite glad that they were still in business and were just as delicious. Enjoyed the burrata and the carpaccio for appetizers and loved the delicious lamp chops."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "Great place, excellent food-everyone cleaned their plates. Service is excellent, all the waiters are Italian!!! Beautiful salads, pasta is a MUST, excellent entrees. Save room for dessert, the panna cotta is the best. The atmosphere is welcoming, outstanding food and service. Ideale has it all....and handsome waiters too!!!!"
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "For the food, I can highly recommend Ideale! However, the service fell short and the noise level was excessive. The staff was not attentive. Despite having made a reservation, when we entered the restaurant we waited for someone to notice us even though it was early and few tables were full. As the restaurant filled, the noise level rose significantly. (It had previously been noisy due to the staff. Perhaps they raised the bar for noise.) By the time we ordered dessert, our order was very nearly "thrown" on the table. It was off putting and left me feeling that I would not return, even though the food was well prepared. For me, the price did not fit the experience."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "We love this place. It is small and charming. When you are there you could easily pretend you are in Italy. The food is as good or better than most Italian restaurants we visited in Rome and Tuscany. Have the Ravioli Di Zucca you will not be disappointed."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "This was a great find. It was recommended to me from my bosses that had been going there for years. The ambience is quaint, and even though the tables are close together, you still felt you could talk to others at your table without straining. The wine list was superb, and the staff was very attentive. The best part about this restaurant was the price point for the quality/quantity of food that we received. Most of the dishes were under $25 and healthy portion size. I cannot wait to go back on my next visit to SF."
    Dined on 6/23/2014
  • "Our waiter was charming and very accommodating, the food was extremely fresh and delicious. wonderful figs with prosciutto, zucchini, and tomato and buratta appetizers were wonderful pasta and mixed grilled fish also delicious...........very authentic Italian and delicious."
    Dined on 6/23/2014
  • "Recently had dinner at Cafe Ideale, and I was very impressed. The ambiance is great, the server was friendly and welcoming, and the food was perfect."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "I first had dinner at Ideale around 20 years ago when I went with a native Italian who pronounced it very good. It's a solid mainstay in North Beach, serving food a cut above the tourist-heavy pasta houses on Columbus. It's not perfect -- the service can feel a bit rushed and some of their dishes are just OK -- but it's good. Things I've had that I've liked: antipasti plate; grilled calamari salad; pastas; saltimbocca. One thing I did not care for was the special squash blossom pizza -- the combination of delicate squash blossoms and very strong anchovies didn't really work. But they get points for using squash blossoms. This is a good choice in North Beach."
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "When we want a dependable Italian dinner without too much hype and fuss, this is our regular place!"
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "I find the Italian restaurants hit or miss in North Beach and we enjoyed Ideale."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "The owners have succeeded in creating a Roman restaurant in North Beach. The food is outstanding. There is a well-stocked bar and superior wine cellar. The waiters are friendly and super helpful with great recommendations on wine and food. The space is perfect for quiet dining."
    Dined on 6/10/2014
  • "This is my go to North Beach Italian spot. Like true Italians if you ask them what is the best they will be excited to share the secrects of their food. I have never been disappointed. They also carry some bigger italian wines which are very nice."
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "Service was just o.k. (although the place was very busy). Fish was overcooked (dry)."
    Dined on 5/30/2014
  • "Wonderful Italian food (fine dining-more than just pizza and pasta) served by real Italian waiters. the night we were there, even several customers spoke Italian. Very pleasant atmosphere with Italian posters and paintings by local artists. Customers generally dress 'business casual'. "
    Dined on 5/28/2014
  • "We have been going to Ideale for at least fifteen years. It is a gem! The quality of food that you would expect from a "big deal" Italian restaurant but in a neighborhood trattoria with no pretension. Go!"
    Dined on 5/28/2014
  • "Best Italian in the city. A north beach hidden gem."
    Dined on 5/17/2014
  • "This has been one of our favorite restaurants for a couple of years. Until last Saturday, we've never had a bad experience. The appetizers (the grilled calamari and prosciutto and pear) were excellent as always, but our entrees were mediocre to bad. The paparadelle was just not right - it was undercooked, not al dente and had a weird taste. The lamb ragu didn't have much lamb and the sauce was blah. My husband had the saltimbocca and the veal wasn’t tender, the prosciutto/cheese was the best part of it. We had to ask the waiter for the specials and although I realize it was very busy, he was less than attentive. I don't think we'll actually cross this off our list, but doubt we'll be back very soon. "
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "The restaurant is very crowded, always. Traditional Italian, but the wait staff is very good."
    Dined on 12/14/2013
  • "The best Italian meal I've had in years...in any city. Certainly blows my hometown (Phoenix/Scottsdale) out of the water. The food was basically simple, but the preparation was flawless. Seasonings were bold and perfectly matched to the dish. We sampled 4 different plates (Margherita pizza, gnocchi, veal, & Cornish game hen) and each was delicious. Wine selection was adequate and very reasonably priced. Décor is casual: our waiter was in jeans - yet the service was impeccable. Highly recommended."
    Dined on 4/27/2014
  • "Our appetizer (Carpaccio) was tasteless. The Caesar salad was quite yummy. Our pasta entrees were served hot but the flavor was not outstanding our notable in any way. I would not recommend this restaurant and wonder how it could have gotten such high rankings. I understand it has been remodeled - so it looked pretty cute. It was very noisy."
    Dined on 4/26/2014
  • "Good food, well-rounded menu (pizza, pasta, salads, fish) friendly but not overbearing servers, nice spot and not teeming with hipsters or techies. Win for old North Beach. "
    Dined on 4/27/2014
  • "We were greeted warmly and seated right away. The restaurant had a nice ambiance, and the service was very good. Everyone loved their dish: risotto, spaghetti with clams (lots of them), and pasta stuffed with veal. I didn't think the tiramisu was the best, but others seemed to enjoy it. The good service, casual atmosphere, and great food at a reasonable price will keep us coming back."
    Dined on 4/26/2014
  • "Apparently the lasagna was good but the fish entre - terrible. I couldn't believe they charged $25 for a pile of mushy fish and burnt dried out potatoes with no sophistication. There are other restaurants that charge the same but have put sophistication into their dishes. The service was outstanding, though. Never had better. "
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "This is the 2nd time I have dined and enjoyed the meal, but the wine is overpriced and usually too warm inside this small restaurant."
    Dined on 4/18/2014
  • "With so many good restaurants in the neighborhood it was fun to find a new charming place to go when in the area. We came up to see Beach Blanket Babylon and wanted to grab dinner before the show. We got to Ideale early and had a great experience with wonderful, attentive service and everyone was friendly and from Italy! We had so much fun that we came back after the show for dessert! Yum! Also had a glass of Moscato D'asti to make the night end perfectly! We will be back!"
    Dined on 4/18/2014
  • "We have been dining at Ideale for three years and it is one of our favorite neighborhood restaurants in San Francisco. Located in North Beach, Ideale is a cozy, casual Italian restaurant with a tiny bar in the back. On our most recent visit, we were greeted warmly by Guiseppe, our server. We started with perfectly prepared grilled calamari and a pear with prosciutto and a sprinkling of arugula. For entrees, we had the organic spinach and cheese ravioli, the special pasta with fish, pasta pomodoro and pasta carbonara. The pastas were fresh and delicious. The sauces were perfect - the right blends of ingredients. My daughter had the tiramisu and loved it. Great food, friendly service, reasonably priced! We'll be back!"
    Dined on 4/14/2014
  • "We had the Calamari, two pasta dishes and a pizza. All outstanding. Sauces and flavors were excellent. Tiramisu was the best. Out of the way place is worth the visit. Rustic setting but very good cost per value."
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "I've been in this restaurant 3 times and i absolutely love it!! Amazing food and service! !"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "We went there with my family and the food was delicious! It is a little loud there, but the service is excellent!"
    Dined on 4/5/2014
  • "Came here with my parents and a good family friend a couple nights ago and overall loved the food. We ordered two appetizers, one being the cold seafood salad which did not seem fresh - was very "fishy". Besides that, our entrees were amazing. We cautiously ordered the fish of the day, two pasta dishes, and the rack of lamb - all amazing. The pasta is homeade and you can really tell. The fish was cooked perfectly and was fresh (thankfully). This was my second time here and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a good italian restaurant in North Beach. I personally find this restaurant much better then the tourist traps on Columbus."
    Dined on 4/2/2014
  • "Great authentic Italian food in a very easy going casual environment. I enjoyed Zucchine Tartufate - terrific light dish and my Costolleto di Vittello were as good as the one I enjoyed in Italy. Reasonable priced wine list and a very attentive service."
    Dined on 3/21/2014
  • "This place has great decor, friendly service, and a really nice atmosphere. There were three of us. We had the gnocchi, which were better than average with a very good meat sauce; ravioli, which we liked; and a mushroom/sausage pizza, which had a nice thin crust and a pretty nondescript taste - it definitely could have been better. The Caesar salad was good because it actually had anchovies, a rarity these days. We had a reservation and were seated right away. I would recommend this place as a good match between quality and price, with an excellent atmosphere."
    Dined on 3/20/2014
  • "Took our kids for an early dinner. Waiter was very patient and came out with some good ideas on standard menu items that the kids loved. Will definitely return. If only we could park someplace close, sniff."
    Dined on 12/30/2013
  • "Really good Italian cuisine accompanied with a solid Italian wine selection. Deserts were exceptional. Especially enjoyed the Tiramisu and the lemon gelato with lemoncelllo which was just amazing. I thought I was in Florence."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "This was a business meal with 6 of us all out of town The service was excellent, the pasta appeared to be homemade And they even had really good limoncello. It was like Being he in the north end in Boston"
    Dined on 2/24/2014
  • "We were the first ones in on Tuesday night at 7 and were a little worried. A very Italian staff met us at the door and made sure we felt welcome and taken care of. They were a little quirky but super nice and helpful with everything, and we felt comfortable even with a 6 and 7 year old in tow. Tortellini and Ravioli were homemade and AWESOME. Cream and Red sauces could not have been better. Prosciutto and Pear appetizer was delicous. Drinks were great (appropriately strong with good tonic) and wine list had plenty of great options at good prices. Will definitely go back."
    Dined on 2/18/2014
  • "We have been to Ideale many times, but never on Saturday night. There is no parking, of course, but the service was rushed, our orders mixed up, and the food was not inspiring. They were out of the Arneis wine and the bill came to $115 with tip. The burrata was good."
    Dined on 2/1/2014
  • "We started with the special appetizer for the day: smoked mozzarella wrapped in prosciutto and baked, served atop arugula. It was such an interesting take on cheese starter...all of the flavors, smokey and salty and earthy and peppery. Wow. We then ordered our entrees (with a little help from our waiter). My friend ordered the homemade lasagna per our servers eager suggestion, and I ordered the paparadelle with lamb ragu. We, literally, ate every last bite. The pasta in both of our dishes was homemade and handcut. The texture and the flavor was so delicate and light...I had forgotten what real pasta tasted like. The sauce was perfection. The right blend of tomato and spice and small chunks of meat. We were literally in heaven."
    Dined on 2/1/2014
  • "We've tried the rest and we always come back to the best! Hands down, the best Italian food in North Beach."
    Dined on 1/31/2014