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Il Palio
Il Palio

Il Palio Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.sienahotel.com/IlPalio.aspx
  • Phone: (919) 918-2545
  • Hours of Operation: Breakfast: Monday - Sunday: 6:30am - 10:00am; Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:00pm; Brunch Sunday: 11:30 - 2:00pm; Dinner: Sunday - Thursday 5:30pm - 9:00pm; Friday & Saturday 5:30pm - 10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Executive Chef: Teddy Diggs
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Delivery, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: Private dining and meeting sapce available from 2 - 200. Please contact the Catering & Sales team at 919.929.4000 or via email: astruble@sienahotel.com
  • Entertainment: Live music Friday & Saturday Nights 6:30pm - 9:30pm
  • Special Events & Promotions: Private dining available to up to 100 guests. Please contact the Catering & Sales team at 919.929.4000 or via email: astruble@sienahotel.com

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Franklin St. and Estes Dr.
  • Parking: Hotel Parking
  • Parking Details: Ample, complimentary self parking and valet parking available.
A word from Il Palio
Il Palio is a farm-to-fork restaurant dedicated to providing tantilizing dishes using only the freshest ingredients. Know for its Italian influence, Il Palio takes pride in creating tastes from the old country while offering new, interesting flavors. With over 400 wines to choose from, there is a perfect compliment to any meal. Il Palio has consistently been awarded the prestigious AAA Four Diamond Award and is acclaimed by Condé Nast. Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
  • Diners' Choice WinnerItalian
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
Diner Reviews
  • "Is what we had at lunch two days ago. Truly Italian inspired good. Well served in a a pleasant environment. Can't comment on other restaurants in this area but if seeking good Italian food I would not hesitate choosing Il Palio."
    Dined on 8/27/2014
  • "The food and service at Il Palio never disappoint, both are outstanding. We dine at the restaurant each time we visit our son at college and the area (4-5 times a year), we would be there more often but live in NY."
    Dined on 8/23/2014
  • "We went there for our wedding anniversary. Everything was splendid, as it has always been."
    Dined on 8/20/2014
  • "Delicious food and excellant service! Will return!"
    Dined on 8/17/2014
  • "This was my 2nd trip to Il Palio - this time on purpose. The first instance we wandered in by chance as we were staying at the hotel. This time round, to celebrate my birthday on a return trip. Foccacia made onsite, steeped in olive oil - great start! Linguine with clams - small portion, just right on the pasta. 4 clams - maybe a little stingy. Sauce fantastic. Others ate lasagna and enjoyed it. The bombolone dessert doughnuts are the best. There are more menu choices than some reviewers here have suggested. Starters, pastas, mains. It's a bit on the pricey side, but thoroughly enjoyable and they have wonderful service. Recommend and will return."
    Dined on 8/16/2014
  • "Just recently stayed at the hotel and the restaurant was part of the romantic package, don't usually have high hopes for hotel restaurants, but the food was awesome..great Italian..good service and great wine."
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "Our meal was superb. The service outstanding and a quite atmosphere to allow conversation. I had veal and pork meatballs with a pomodoro sauce and I am still thinking about them."
    Dined on 8/3/2014
  • "We celebrated our anniversary at Il Palio - it was a quiet night in the restaurant and we enjoyed lingering over our meal. We enjoyed the prosciutto with melon appetizer, and two pasta dishes. Bombolini dessert with lemon curd was wonderful. Wine by the quartino is the best deal. Prices were within line for the excellent service except the overpriced bottle of sparkling water. All in all, a wonderful evening."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "After the reviews we read on Trip Advisor, we were very disappointed by the food. That being said, the service was extraordinary, and the restaurant itself was lovely."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "My wife and I had dinner at Il Palio on Saturday, July 5th. There were two other tables (other than ours) with seated dinner patrons. You could hear a pin drop! The menu was bleak, with only 4 entrees. My wife ordered a sea bass fillet, which was dry and tasteless, and appeared to be more of a snapper than sea bass. I ordered a lobster pasta, which contained lots of pasta and very little lobster pieces. The salad and dessert were excellent, the entrees not so much. Service was very good. Very disappointed to see this once-heralded restaurant slip like this."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Wow! We loved it. We ate in the bar the first night and had room service the others. The food was uniformly wonderful...I love the kale caesar , and the pastas were perfect al dente and sauced to perfection. If you order the whole fish or the roast baby chicken, ask them to bone the fish and disjoint the chicken...it'll be a lot easier to eat, and they will do that...arranging everything beautifully on a new plate. Chris at the bar is loads of fun and picks good wines when asked for his opinion. We're definitely happy with the experience and will be back."
    Dined on 6/30/2014
  • "The menu is limited but that is because it changes frequently and every dish is presented like an artwork and the tast is amazing! There was a piano player that played ambient music live! The decorations are good but boring/plain compared to overseas. The waiter was extremely knowledgeable and very good at anticipating needs."
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "We had awesome service & wonderful food! They offer brunch every Sunday. We definitely will be back!"
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "This is a beautiful restaurant with excellent service. The lunch menu, however, is limited. There is a need for more small items which are not so pricey. Many people in our culture do not wish a big meal at the noon hour. I would suggest a variety of salads, with and without seafood or chicken, a choice of two to three seasonal soups, and a variety of sandwiches or light items. Our group of five women all chose the same item from the menu, simply because it was one of the lighter, less expensive options. "
    Dined on 5/22/2014
  • "Noticeable decline in both food quality and atmosphere since our last visit. The place was half-empty yet we were shown to a table that was clearly brought in from the patio. The food was okay, but nothing special. Really not what we were expecting after making a reservation months in advance for Mother's Day weekend. The only bright spot was the attentive service."
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "We had a delicious three course prix fixe brunch at It Palio. The food was wonderful and the service couldn't have been better. Mothers Day weekend in Chapel Hill is always challenging for both diners and restaurants because it is graduation weekend for both UNC and Duke. Il Palio handled it perfectly. You wouldn't have even known that it was a busier than usual weekend. What a treat for mothers and grads!"
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "Had dinner celebrating son's graduation. Very relaxed atmosphere--did not feel rushed. Sommelier on site made excellent sparkling wine suggestions. Food was fantastic (though pricey) with VERY attentive, friendly service. Breakfast was reasonably priced. Special occasion restaurant--would dine there again!"
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "We enjoyed our second visit to Il Palio with friends. Have met the new manager through a wine class he is teaching. Thought the food was excellent and atmosphere pleasant and relaxing. I am not a fan of hotel restaurants, but this one is very good."
    Dined on 5/8/2014
  • "Wow! I write a lot of reviews for this restaurant because I frequent at least once a week now...it's that good! I am always amazed at Chef Teddy Diggs creativity and this past weeks dinner blew me away! I saw on the menu right away a soup titled Stinging Nettles soup. I'm familiar with Stinging Nettles but never dreamed you could eat them let alone make a soup out of them so of course I had to order a bowl and boy am I glad I did! It was delicious and served with a perfectly poached egg which you break and mix up into the soup...what a great presentation! His menu changes practically daily so I don't know if this will be offered again but if you see it on there I encourage you to give it a try...you'll be glad you did!"
    Dined on 5/4/2014
  • "good hotel restaurant. good service, friendly ambience. convenient off of hotel lobby. "
    Dined on 4/28/2014
  • "Probably giving up on this spot. Asked for a quiet table for 5 and was given a large table for 8 at which we couldn't hear one another. Asked for another table. Were placed in front of the kitchen entrance and the activity and hovering staff made the experience feel chaaotic and quite noisy. Limited menu and servings were miniscule but good. Waiter was very inexperienced but tried to do a good job. We were all disappointed on this birthday occasion for two members of the party. with each changing chef, we've come back but finally would not recommend this restaurant again."
    Dined on 4/24/2014
  • "Il Palio is back to its former elegant self! We loved everything--imaginative, delicious food, great service, highly recommend!"
    Dined on 4/24/2014
  • "This chef, new to Il Palio but notorious where he cooked before, is exceptional! His dishes are fresh, interesting, creative but not overdone. Every item on the menu is a home run! We are so fortunate to have him in the triangle area!"
    Dined on 4/21/2014
  • "There have been some concerns about the changing of executive Chefs recently, but allow me to put those concerns to rest. While Chef Teddy Diggs has added a new flare to the cuisine while keeping it consistent with what you have grown to expect from this rustic, upscale Italian landmark. The homemade rustic pastas are offered in small and large portions, with the lamb ragu being especially bold and balanced. They also offer entrees for two and an extended tasting option. The direction adds more depth to the menu than previous iterations. The wine list continues to boast the fine selection of Italian wines in addition to a variety of other countries' offerings. Finish off the meal with the lemon curd bomboloni, you'll thank me later."
    Dined on 4/13/2014
  • "What a delight! Wonderful menu, fresh and seasonal. PERFECTLY prepared and presented. The portion size was correct; the colors and combination of seasoning texture etc. was excellent. The house focaccia was excellent. The wine quarto for the same price that others charge for a glass is brilliant. ALL the wait staff, maitre'de, wine steward, etc., were kind, attentive, well mannered, conversive, and made the entire experience a joy. It was very busy that night, and we were told very politely, that our waiter would be with us momentarily; even though he and all the staff were very busy, we were made to feel like we were the only ones they were waiting on. Can't wait to come there again. Changes by the new Executive Chef are wonderful."
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "We consider ourselves foodies and have eaten all over the world, including Italy. We have never had a nicer meal. My husband's Osso Bucco was particularly outstanding. My buccatini was excellent as well. And the focaccia bread! It had no need of olive oil nor butter and it was nicely different. My husband splurged and had the chocolate torta for dessert. Wow! It came with the most fabulous bing cherries ever. (I stole two) My only comment was that since it was so very rich, the portion size could have been smaller. It could probably be enough for two. THe staff was also knowledgable about their wines--a real plus."
    Dined on 4/10/2014
  • "For foodies going the gluten free route, you may want to make an exception here. The bread was an out of this world experience. Olive oil from Umbria has been infused into the dough, along with the weaving in of Rosemary and sea salt. The baking preparation creates a robust crusty exterior while allowing for a soft texture within. Having picked the 4 course menu, I wanted to limit my bread consumption but found my willpower to weak to stop. The menu was not overwhelming in choices but provided enough variety to satisfy the curiosity of both timid and adventurous diners. A wonderful find in Chapel Hill."
    Dined on 3/23/2014
  • "Great meal and service the second time just like the first. Worth the drive from Elon."
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "I love elegant lunches, and Il Palio delivers better than any place I know in Chapel Hill or Durham. The service was outstanding, the waiter extremely knowledgeable, and the ambiance was conducive to quiet conversation. The food itself was excellent -- interesting selections, beautifully prepared, and what I really appreciated was a dessert menu that showed some real thought and creativity. I've been eating at Il Palio for over twenty years and it really has taken itself to a very high level of food and dining excellence. Highly recommended!"
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "They had run out of the Monkfish by the time we got to order so we ordered 2 pastas and 2 Sea Bass, which were served whole,way too salty, oily and not at all to my liking. Gabriel kindly took those fish dishes away and replaced them with the most delicious gnocci and ravioli dishes! It made my night! The service was fantastic and so was the entire experience. Bravo for handling it so well!!"
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "The staff at Il Palio was gracious and attentive, the food excellent, and everything but the delivery of the check (and its calculation) handled in a timely fashion. The only problem we had was with the final disposition of the check. The waiter had a problem breaking the larger check into smaller, separate ones and returned after attempting to do this with the wrong configuration of checks. Only one group of our party of 7 received the check they asked for. The larger check was also not delivered in a timely manner after we completed our dessert. I'm not at all sure our waiter was to blame; rather, it may not be the policy of Il Palio to routinely break larger group checks into smaller ones. I would suggest this be allowed in the future."
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "We have been here a number of times and always find food and service to be exceptional. Unfortunately, my main course was served very cool and when I asked for it to be heated, it was returned seriously over cooked ."
    Dined on 2/17/2014
  • "Having a gift certificate, we were interested in a restaurant we'd heard had excellent food. True. The flavors were very nice, imaginative and well done. However, our party consisted of hungry people. It was a long time between drinks, and ordering, and service of the food (tepid) and the requested bread never arrived until into the meal. The portions were tiny. My husband, a former pro football player, looked strange seated before what I can only describe as a lasagna cupcake for his entree. The prices did not reflect the paucity of the servings. Not a great value, and as good as the food was (gnocchi with lamb ragu was great--but only 4 gnocchi?) there are other places in the Triangle with excellent execution."
    Dined on 2/16/2014
  • "Went there Sat night after V-day. Learned a new chef was making headlines. Turns out that "new" chef isn't there anymore. It's almost like we should know when chefs leave as we do corporate executives. At any rate, my wife's lasagna was cold and my steak was more grizzle than meat. Only highlight was chocolate torte which went well with the excellent wine (we brought)."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "Our experience was very nice but frankly not at the top of our list and the cost was a bit high for what you got or did't ger. Service was a great improvement over previous ownership. Food was nice but what was served did not seem to follow what was specified on the menu. For. Valentines day there was nothing special provided, I.e. Flower or an amuse bouch as there always has been at most other places. At $79 without wine it was a bit steep. Stil not crazy about the dining room being basically in the hotel lobby."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "We shared a pasta with cauliflower, raisins , and pine nuts that was out if this world. The sword fish main course was very nice. Innovative without being pretentious. High on flavor. Our only disappointment was that the wine recommendations were mediocre. We tried two but were not impressed. And, it's usually not that hard to please our palettes!"
    Dined on 2/9/2014
  • "My partner and I went to Il Palio to celebrate a birthday, and we will definitely be returning for future events. Every aspect of the experience was exactly what we had hoped for--delicious food, a romantic atmosphere, and service that was attentive but never hovering. Unlike anything else we have found in this area..."
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "The food has declined to fair on some dishes, still good on others. The overall average plus food can't possible make up for the very poor service. The service is beyond terrible. There are many far better choices in Chapel Hill!"
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "So the new chef at Il Palio started on Jan 2nd and he is by far the best chef Il Palio has ever had...and yes, I have been dining here on a regular basis since it opened more than 25 years ago and yes I can make this statement after just 4 weeks of dining at the Il Palio as I have had brunch, lunch and dinner during the past 4 weeks on a regular basis at the restaurant so I speak from experience. Lunch is by far the best bargain in the Triangle and I hope they keep offering the fixed price special. I mean, come on! What a bargain! 3 courses for $28 and a glass of wine! You can't beat that! Ordered the Pacchero as my entree and marveled at his pasta making talent. Stupendous! Can't wait to go again next week for lunch!"
    Dined on 2/6/2014
  • "I have been to a lot of places over the years, and the food and service I've received at the Palio is without question the VERY best that I've experienced at any price! The whole staff will treat you as if you were royalty. And they are the best service team I've ever experienced . You will swear that they put together a special plan, just for YOUR visit. In the bar area after dinner, you and your partner can also listen to live piano over a glass of fine wine. Richard Tazewell will play you old standards in a style that is absolutely captivating as it is mesmerizing ."
    Dined on 1/31/2014