CUCINA enoteca - Irvine

4.5
1527 reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
CUCINA enoteca is centrally located in the Irvine Spectrum! Owner Tracy Borkum's flair for combining great ambience, award-winning cuisine and unparalleled service are once again starring components in this latest Urban Kitchen Group creation. Executive Chef Joe Magnanelli and Chef de Cuisine Tony Trujillo bring their artistry to the table as guests enjoy an open kitchen. The menu features Italian classics with a modern twist, made with the freshest local, organic and sustainable ingredients. Along with a diverse selection of wines by the glass, guests may visit the restaurant's retail area to select from over 200 bottles for dinner (corkage fee of $9 applies) or purchase wine to go. The energetic space features contemporary elements and vintage artifacts creating the feel of a modern Italian kitchen combined with the comfort of an old rustic farmhouse.
What 1527 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.4
service
4.6
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
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R
New York Area
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Absolutely ridiculous. Hostess staff was completely rude and pompous. We had a patio reservation for 4 people at 7pm and showed up a few minutes late (7:15pm). They said multiple times that they almost cancelled our reservation because we were late and after waiting for our table, tried to seat us inside. When we pointed out the available tables outside which is what we reserved, they said no and reminded us again that they almost cancelled our reservation because we were late. The way they responded was infuriating as they made it clear they didn’t want to be helpful in the slightest. The manager looked our way and didn’t care to offer any assistance. At this point, taking we are this restaurant off of our rotation as I’m not interested in patronizing this business any further.

OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went here for our anniversary before catching a comedy show. Food, drinks and service were spot on. We were very impressed with the food. Restaurant ambiance was pleasant and comfortable. Highly recommend. Thanks!

JL
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

We've had lovely dinners before. However, this time it was a little off. My meal was extremely salty and drink had too much mint. Not as consistent as the last few times I've visited. But still it is a nice place to enjoy an alfresco supper.

g
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was great, service is great, and location is ideal.

OT
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on August 7, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 5

Food and service was not of usual quality this time

IG
Orange County
10 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and the service were absolutely marvelous. Both the lasagna and the pappardelle were flavorful, satisfying and definitely worth ordering again. Our server, Brendan , was courteous and friendly. He made our visit very pleasant.

BG
1 review
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

We love to come here. Food and environment are always good.
However, we missed their old menu. The latest menu removed quite a few good dishes and replaced with something simpler (cheaper ingredient?). Hope to be surprised by their next menu.
Highly recommended.

WH
Orange County
2 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My wife had the lasagna, it was outstanding. I had the short ribs that our server recommended. The server also recommended the calamari appetizer witch neither my wife or I are big on, but he sold it well so tried it and was delighted with the dish that came with a delicious creamy sauce.

OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 5

The waiter recommended the buckwheat pasta. Unfortunately it was bland. I told the waiter I didn’t want a spicy dish for my son so I chose the spaghetti. He didn’t tell me that the meatballs were spicy. My husband loved the rotisserie chicken and my son loved the Wagyu Burger. Squash blossoms were awesome. The waiter brought me a birthday dessert with 4 spoons. He didn’t ask if others wanted dessert. Maybe this experience was affected by the service but I thought the menu was limited. Not sure we’ll return.

TS
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Waiter acknowledged my granddaughter’s birthday with a special individual delicious panda cotta. Made her feel so special. Great food, great service!

OT
1 review
Dined on July 26, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 5

The server did not only leave us with no water most of the time, our cocktails and beer were also dry. We would have had twice the drinks if he had come around. . Needed to wait for a very long time for the food to come out except the appetizer. The burger was not cooked as we ordered. After 10 minutes we flagged down a different server to take it back for us and then it back it never came back over 30 mins later until we were ready to leave and had already cancelled the dish. They offered us a dessert to compensate but we had a concert to go to and didn’t want to Rick waiting on it. We were there 2 hours total.

S
Los Angeles
188 reviews
Dined on July 26, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Food was OK, and our waitress was great. It was loud and lots of screaming kids.

AW
1 review
Dined on July 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service and food! They always put a spin on things and make the dishes interesting!

OT
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

Service was soooooooooo slow. The restaurant didn’t appear to be very busy. We were starving!!!

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on July 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 3

If you don’t want to be eating with a bunch of dogs ( I wish they left them at home as it’s gross) then insist on an area with no dogs allowed like inside.

Otherwise this is a great place with excellent wines at retail prices and the food is excellent

LV
St. Louis
13 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding in every way.

OT
Orange County
2 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

went with my parents and aunt. everyone enjoyed their food. great recommendations from the server on the menu as well as the wine section. they complimented the decorvand ambiance. will be back for sure.

M
1 review
Dined on July 18, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 2

Awful server! Took orders late, did not refil
Drinks and switched bills.

WC
1 review
Dined on July 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always good to bring family to Cucina. Friendly service wonderful food awesome ambiance. Appetizers are the best.

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on July 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the cheese board & octopus for appetizers. Both were great, but I especially enjoyed the cheese. My entree was a Fig, bacon & ricotta pizza with arugula- Amazing!

OT
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server was so great! Each course was also so good!!!

MB
1 review
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious foods aside, the service is wonderful. The manager offered to put our flower in a "vase" for us besides checking to see if we needed anything else. Little touch like that helped make our experiences even more enjoyable. Thank you. P.S.

JF
Los Angeles
82 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Cucina Enoteca is a very solid choice at the Irvine Spectrum. Great wine selection (although we didn't take advantage of since we were there for lunch). Nice outdoor patio.

D
Orange County
7 reviews
Dined on July 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Service was EXCEPTIONALLY slow today. Very unusual. Food took a long time to come out from kitchen and wine manager took way too long to answer a few questions about wine. Very disappointing for date night. Especially since service is usually decent

MV
1 review
Dined on July 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

We were celebrating our 14 anniversary, I would have been nice that the restaurant had any type of " special" or acknowledge of the celebration. It was even confirmed in the reservation.

The food was overall good. We did not like much the tomato foccacia, I was expecting the flat pizza type.

RS
Orange County
11 reviews
Dined on July 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food was good as always and wait staff was very nice and attentive. Really enjoy this place!

TC
1 review
Dined on July 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server, Blair, was wonderful. She was so attentive, cordial and welcoming!

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on July 1, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 4

It took 15 minutes to get our order taken... they blamed a mixup on who was to be waiting out table... but we didn’t get our food until 12:47 for a 12p reservation. Super upsetting.

SC
Palm Springs
2 reviews
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding dining experience! The ambience was great and the service was spot on. The food that we had was outstanding. Lamb merguez sausage pizza was delicious and the smoked octopus was out of this world. Would definitely go back!

OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great food and atmosphere

P
Orange County
78 reviews
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

They were very nice to let us stay and visit...they weren't busy, but they did not rush us and our server was very nice. I don't think the food is quite as good as it once was, and various popular items regularly disappear from the menu. The server said he couldn't even keep up with the changes...

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on June 26, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 5

Food is consistently amazing and on point. This time the service was not up to caliber. Our waiter Brandon took forever to come over when we were seated to ask if we wanted drinks and it was probably about 15 mins after we sat. Food did come out quickly and was amazing. The people who brought our food were way more attentive than our server unfortunately. Took forever to get our server Brandon’s attention for anything . Couldn’t even get Parmesan Cheese for my food. Think we spent a half hour just trying to get his attention when he finally came back to our section outside

t
Orange County
16 reviews
Dined on June 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Above average preparation of familiar dishes, and some interesting flavor combinations.

TC
1 review
Dined on June 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Consistently great food , friendly staff and fast service . Enjoyed the spinach ravioli ALOT!

OT
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

Very mediocre food. Beware of “tip calculator” on the check. The math is wrong and inflated. Showed manager. Not sure if intentional, but definitely wrong and in favor of them.

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on June 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the most amazing service and the food was also amazing

OT
1 review
Dined on June 19, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 4ambience 4

Unfortunately food was extremely salty and was not up to par.

A
1 review
Dined on June 19, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 5

Even though we booked a reservation on open table, they said there wasn’t any table for us. They sent us to the community table where the service was incredibly slow and the food took quite a long time to come out. They had one waiter doing the whole community table as well as half the dining room. Hopefully this was just an off day and not a sign of things to come for this restaurant.

OT
San Francisco
75 reviews
Dined on June 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My favorite spot at Irvine spectrum. Very well done and when the weather is nice outside is dreamy. Food is fresh and fantastic and the tiramisu is hands down the best on the planet

OT
New England
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I took my husband here for Father’s Day. We had the fried squash blossoms which were amazing, and the burrata salad which was good also. My husband had the squid ink linguine pasta dish and I had the short rib pasta. He really liked his pasta. The short rib was okay. It’s a really heavy dish with the wide noodles. It would probably be a lot better with polenta it a lighter pasta.

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