Acquolina

4.1
113 reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Acquolina owner Dario Nicotra hails from Livorno, a city on Tuscany's western coast and serves the food of his native Florentine region. Acquolina, which means "mouthwatering" in Italian, is reminiscent of his old days of hanging out at the beach in Tuscany and frequenting a local family restaurant. Acquolina offers casual brunch and lunch options, with omelets, breakfast pizza, pastries, and espresso in the morning and pasta, focaccia, and pizza made in an imported, stone oven in the afternoon. Dinner is more sophisticated, with meats and seafood plus pizza and pasta. Chef Meri Serpillo prepares all of the pasta daily and freshly for each dish. A selection of wines and beers from Italy (and California) complement all the dishes and the fresh fruit cocktails are the perfect aperitif before your meal. Acquolina offers outdoor seating directly in front of Washington Square Park for a classic San Francisco outdoor dining experience and some of the best people-watching in the city.

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Mon - Fri 11:30AM - 11:45AM 12:00PM - 1:00PM 4:00PM - 5:30PM

What 113 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.1based on recent ratings
4.0
food
4.0
service
4.1
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
80% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were here for Valentine's Day and it was my husband’s birthday. They had beautifully presented branzino and it was delicious! Service was ON POINT! There were two guys working plus the manager and a host. They were all so in sync and everything was so smooth and delicious. The wine selection is not great for an Italian restaurant, that is the only downside. Next time maybe we should try cocktails?
Overall, a wonderful experience! Thank you for a memorable experience!

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HC
1 review
Dined on January 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of our favorite Italian restaurant in the north beach. Usually we do not book a table but we did this time as we had a guest from Tokyo.
The waiters were friendly and took care of us nicely, even our guest arrived relatively late.
Every dish was delicious and service was just right, and pleasant.

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d
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 21, 2019
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 2

Worst service I've ever had. Rude staff, slow to respond.

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OT
Tahoe
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

The owner and waiter are super nice and open. Our waiter did not speak much English so he messed up our order. There was a delay for a couple of us. Food was generally good. Wine good.

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KB
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Authentic food, good ambiance. Highly recommend for dates or family outings.

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OT
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 3food 1service 2ambience 3

Server was nice but service was exceptionally slow. A larger party seated after us received their meal before we did. Disappointing. Our meal was so late the nice server donated an extra appetizer. When the food came, it was only for 2 of the diners and we had to wait for the third meal. Particularly disappointing was their rigatoni with chopped pork ribs, 3 pieces of bone with no meat in a sea of red sauce, hidden by a pile of Parmesan. Oh well, we had a night out in North beach...expectations were not high for the cuisine but sadly fell short anyway.

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A
1 review
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 1ambience 1

Unfortunately, the menu for Xmas was limited compared to the regular menu which meant almost no options for vegetarians. They lost our order and our food came way after our neighbors who arrived after us. The food was not very good and they had the TV on despite it being Xmas. I was disappointed.

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L
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went to Acquolina with a fairly large group and they were very accommodating and friendly. They helped us pick the best options for our large group to share and everyone was very happy with the food. They even brought us desserts to share at the end, on the house! It was a beautiful setting with the lights in the windows and across from the square. Couldn't have asked for a better evening. Thank you!

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OT
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

The meatballs and gravy lacked flavor. Almost like they forgot tonight in the spices. The Caesar salad was meh. The pizza’s were a bit too well done. The crust was dark brown and crispy stiff. We had the margarita and it was flavorful. Will I go back? Probably not.

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MD
San Francisco
21 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

The service was fantastic and everyone was very nice. I really enjoyed the grandma cake for dessert. I had the shrimp risotto and the shrimp were a little overdone.

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 23, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

A good experience. Good food, good wines. It was a rainy day, I arrived before the reservation time and I got a table before too. My wife loved it.

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OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on November 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 2ambience 4

Good place to take a tinder date!

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OT
Denver
3 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic service, and even better food. Pasta was served perfect, and the wine selection was a great value. Highly recommend this place for a great dinner

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 1

My food was not good and expensive. Don’t mind paying for good quality. This was very disappointing. Won’t go back.

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 3

We read a bunch of good reviews and were excited to try out this restaurant. Unfortunately the food was quite bland and lacking flavor, and the pasta was undercooked. The sauce was dry, almost like it had been sitting for a while. Our table was so slanted that plates, silverware, and glasses slid towards the edge every now and then. The staff were aware and did not help fix the situation. Definitely not worth the price and not a 4 star restaurant.

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3
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 2

Much too noisy. I could barely hear the person next to me speak. I don't get why a table of four young women need to all try to talk at once and shout over the others to try to be heard first. I guess I was raised differently.

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DL
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 4

Food was average at best for Italian. Pizza was soggy and full of grease and the first pasta dish we ordered was undercooked with some strange gel like decoration that was both unattractive and strange. Switched out for second dish and having told the waiter I was vegetarian it still came with bacon on. Dessert was amazing but that’s the only positive. Not sure how they survive in such a competitive market.

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OT
Yorkshire
7 reviews
Dined on September 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Table for 8. Sat straight away. Service was excellent. Food really good! Extra treat at the end was lovely. Nice atmosphere, would definitely recommend!

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M
1 review
Dined on August 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 4

Cucina italiana come se si fosse in Italia e tanta allegria e buon umore
Bellissima serata e siamo tornati anche a pranzo

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FF
San Francisco
159 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Three great friends sat at the best table of the house in the corner looking out into the street intersection. It was a sunny day in San Francisco and people watching was fabulous. Buses were turning from corner to corner and people were walking from all walks of life. Hostess was friendly and asked us for our drinks. We began our meal with Pizza Diavola which consisted of mozzarella, tomato sauce, Italian spicy salami and we added mushrooms....Pizza comes in a thin Neapolitan crust with robust flavors and delicious. Next comes the Pappardelle al Cinghiale….wide noodles with wild boar and tomato sauce. Delicious with generous portion of boar meat. We opted the Risotto de mare for our entrée. It consisted of Carnaroli rice with clams, mussels and prawns and is excellent. Carnaroli rice is cooked al dente and prawns are crunchy. House made Tiramisu is to die for. It was light and delectable and we were very content and satisfied. Wait staff was efficient and attentive. Will definitely be back!

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FF
San Francisco
159 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Three great friends sat at the best table of the house in the corner looking out into the street intersection. It was a sunny day in San Francisco and people watching was fabulous. Buses were turning from corner to corner and people were walking from all walks of life. Hostess was friendly and asked us for our drinks. We began our meal with Pizza Diavola which consisted of mozzarella, tomato sauce, Italian spicy salami and we added mushrooms. Pizza comes in a thin Neapolitan crust with robust flavors and delicious. Next comes the Pappardelle al Cinghiale...wide noodles with wild boar and tomato sauce. Delicious with generous portion of boar meat. We opted the Risotto di Mare for our entrée. It consisted of Carnaroli rice with clams, mussels, and prawns and is excellent. Carnaroli rice is cooked al dente and prawns are crunchy. House made Tiramisu is to die for. It was light and delectable and we were very content and satisfied. Staff was efficient and attentive. Will definitely be back!

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K
Chicago
18 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 3

We came to dinner here with a small group for a bachelorette. It's a small, cute place. The bachelorette ordered the cacio e pepe with eggplant, which sounded exciting but was greyish/brown, tasted bland, and was quite uninspiring in presentation on the plate. Our waitress was very nice in accommodating the bachelorette's request to order something else and even gave her a free glass of bubbles. We really appreciated the nice service to ensure we had a good time.

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T
San Francisco
30 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 2ambience 2

This restaurant on the corner of a lovely intersection across from the Washington square park is all about the view and the location. Nothing else screams to me to come back. Seems very touristy, not locals. I bet it’s people that can’t get into Tony’s. As a neighbor living less than 5 blocks away, I was highly disappointed. Carbonara was tubes of pasta with high fat bacon/jowl, and the 4 cheese pizza wasn’t delicate—it was heavy and too much cheese. Compare it to Del Fina 4 cheese pizza and it’s a completely different world. Won’t go back.

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SH
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

We were a party of 9 and didn't really expect much for lunch, but the food was very good. Authentic and good quality pastas, ham, and cheese. The service was OK, but we were also quite busy with each other and didn't care.

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k
San Francisco
44 reviews
Dined on July 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We came in for an early dinner prior to going to Beach Blanket Babylon and it was such a great experience we almost hated to leave! The area is a great people watching spot in North Beach and is a modern clean restaurant. The waitservice was so personable and she could read our mind as when to bring a dish or ask if we wanted a drink. We were not rushed and we didn't have to wait for anything. It was a bit windy so didn't sit at one of the outdoor seats but that would be fun and it definitely makes you feel like you are in Italy at a little neighborhood café. The quality of the food was outstanding! Juicy cantaloupe and very flavorful prosciutto with a balsamic and honey drizzle were ahighlight as was the authentic Italian gourmet pizza! Yum, I still am dreaming of it and my husband's Tuscan soup was very, very good! He would return just for the soup but loved the pizza too. We look forward to retuning and spending more time as we didn't have the dessert but next time!! This is the real deal.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 22, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 4

Food was meh - out of five entrees and two apps not one was average, most didn’t like. Plus we asked to course things out as a normal diner would do, and everything just came when it did. The waiters were nice to sing happy bday but aside from that this was a miss.

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FF
San Francisco
159 reviews
Dined on July 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Girls' night out on a beautiful evening to a nice Italian ambiance restaurant. It's located in a very busy people watching corner. Ordered a mixed greens salad consisting of tomatoes, onions, grapes and beets. Light and very refreshing! Three of us shared a Tuscan style thin crust pesto pizza with mozzarella cheese, cherry tomatoes and salmon. Excellent! I had the Pappardelle al Cinghiale...wide noodles with wild boar and tomato sauce. Delicious with lots of boar meat. We also shared an entree of grilled Australian lamb chops with aromatic herbs. Lamb chops were well seasoned and entrée comes with roasted potatoes and mixed vegetables. Good portion size. Hostess was friendly. Wait staff was efficient and attentive. It was a full house that evening. Only drawback is the one toilet available for the entire restaurant. I will be back!

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KL
New England
6 reviews
Dined on July 15, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

Not the best dining experience. Had to wait 20 minutes when I had a reservation, had to yell to hear each other, the apps and entrees came out all at once, and my pizza was entirely soggy. So many other better places to go. Would not go back.

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T
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on July 8, 2018
Overall 4food 2service 4ambience 3

Overall I liked this restaurant. But, the porchetta was way overdone and the chicken scaloppini was dry. I'd only get pizzas and pastas here. Fun atmosphere, just disappointed in our dinners.

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OT
1 review
Dined on June 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My friends and I came here to celebrate my birthday, and we had a great time. We ordered a sun dried tomato & pepperoni pizza as well as a margarita pizza, risotto, and a spaghetti - it was all fantastic.

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OT
Grand Rapids
1 review
Dined on June 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service and food are both amazing!

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OT
4 reviews
Dined on June 15, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Informal restaurant, busy, nice atmosphere, good pizza and wine

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OT
Hawaii
3 reviews
Dined on June 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful experience yesterday. The service was excellent and the food authentic. We lived in Italy for a few years and this is our first time enjoying authentic Italian cuisine since leaving. We highly recommend!

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OT
Vancouver
12 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great authentic Italian experience . Great vibe all around

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LD
San Francisco
70 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very cold
Multiple Tv/sound sources on at the same time
Excellent small lasagna

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Myself and Friends went there for Brunch and we got a great table outside with a great waitress, she kept checking up on us and super friendly! We stayed a while after we paid to carry on chatting and they were absolutely fine with it.

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Central Coast
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

A bit disappointed, place has been in the city for a long time and expected some good food. Calzone was mediocre, dough was not fully cooked at the bottom. Had a shrimp salad with avocado that smell too much like fish and had some crazy “natural colors” neon blue color, according to the waiter it was all natural colors.....all other salads were good. House wine was nice and price fair....canelone was good, a bit too much spinach but pasta was nice.

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d
Raleigh
13 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 3

Has fallen far from my last visit. Owner was checked out, Limited wait staff was totally overworked and unable to pay attention to our party. Food was mediocre, desserts were a sloppy mess. I brought a party of 12 here a year ago and had such a nice time we decided to return. Won't make that mistake again.

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k
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

It was good and what was even better was the young woman who served me and my friend. I know this restaurant space for many many years and It has been Acqualino for about a year and its my first visit.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2018
Overall 5food 3service 5ambience 5

Really friendly waiters! And very accommodating. I'll bring more folks here in the future!

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