Cucina Forte

4.6
270 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Italian
Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
Welcome to Cucina Forte Italian Restaurant. I invite you to dine with us and experience an authentic Italian cuisine made with the freshest ingredients. I create every dish with love. The same tradition my mother started at our family restaurant in the Abbruzzi Region of Italy in 1965!

-Maria Forte
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Italian
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Hours of operation
Dinner: Tuesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm

Friday & Saturday: 4:30pm - 11:00pm

Sunday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm
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Phone number
(215) 238-0778
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Maria Forte
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Catherine Street
Additional
Banquet, BYO Liquor, BYO Wine, Gluten-free Menu, Private Room, Wine
Reviews from verified diners
270 reviews
4.6 out of 5 Stars
Outstanding
75%
Very Good
13%
Good
10%
Fair
1%
Poor
0%
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.3
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
1 review
5.0Dined on June 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Top notch food and service. Specials menu is unique and unmatched for quality.

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OT
Philadelphia
6 reviews
5.0Dined on June 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Hands down always the best Italian in the city. My family always demands we go when they visit

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Y
Philadelphia
6 reviews
5.0Dined on June 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best of the best. As always!

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OT
Washington DC
4 reviews
5.0Dined on June 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Simple yet sublime Italian dishes made from the heart.

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AC
Philadelphia
1 review
5.0Dined on June 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing dining experience, staff is wonderful food is outstanding

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BY
Philadelphia
31 reviews
5.0Dined on June 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had the famous Gnocchi...always amazing.... the eggplant crabmeat app special... shrimp scampisi, and other seafood dishes.... homemade fettuccine is genuine...
Thank you, Maria, for stopping to greet us....
Our family’s favorite...

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
5.0Dined on June 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Food..Impeccable Service..one of the Best BYOB’s in South Philly!
One of my definite “go-to’s for years.

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
5.0Dined on May 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely amazing! The best italian food in south Philadelphia! Great service and even better atmosphere!

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OT
Chicago
31 reviews
3.0Dined on May 26, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Food was okay- fresh but a little standard southern Italian

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K
Philadelphia
9 reviews
5.0Dined on May 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was our first time dining at Cucina Forte. The menu was the draw for us and it sure did not disappoint with flavor and taste of our food. The food includes authentic, Italian dishes with fresh ingredients, homemade pasta and sauces. Homemade bread is also provided while waiting for your meal. Entree sizes are big - we had enough for dinner and a meal the next day. The spinach salad with prosciutto and pineapple was worth every dollar! The ambiance is quiet and quaint. The service was fantastic - they were constantly checking on us to make sure everything was to our liking. Don't forget to BYOB or take a quick 5 minute walk to the Wine & Liquor store on South Street. We will definitely be back!

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r
Philadelphia
12 reviews
5.0Dined on May 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Absolutely one of our favorite restaurants. Mama Forte knows how to cook authentically and her homemade Gnocchis are the best around. She makes fantastic gravies and the staff are always welcoming. This is a gem among South Philly restaurants, but it is a gem worth finding and going to. We'll be back again.

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OT
Philadelphia
9 reviews
5.0Dined on April 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Thanks to Anthony and his team, we were treated like longtime friends and were provided with outstanding service and excellent food. This restaurant is a gem and we look forward to returning very soon.

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e
Philadelphia
6 reviews
5.0Dined on April 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our dinner was fresh and delicious! We enjoyed every bite and the service was spot on. We will return for sure!

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MI
Philadelphia
1 review
5.0Dined on April 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We had anotherbgreat experience at Cucina Forte. We were running late, because parking in that area is a nightmare, but they were very accommodating towards us. We got there 45 minutes late and they seated us right away. It's an authentic Phillynrowhome type restaurant, meaning it's a little cramped and noisy, but that's what you'd expect. That didn't detract from our enjoyment of the restaurant. The food was amazing, the service was amazing, and everything was great. We've been going there for years and we love it every time.

PS- let me be clear. Parking can be a problem, it's a small place, and it can be a bit noisy. That being said I can't rate this restaurant High Enough. We loved it so much that we had our wedding rehearsal dinner here. So just come early and be prepared to walk a couple of blocks. You won't be disappointed.

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JN
Philadelphia
1 review
3.0Dined on March 16, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

My wife and I had dinner this past Friday. We have eaten here before but this time I was disappointed because we felt rushed. The food came out too quickly even though we requested them to wait between courses. The waiter told us the specials and the price. Not sure why that was necessary. The waiter was not knowable about the menu. Speaking of menu it is very limited. The specials don't change. I had the gnocchi which are great. Other than that, we won't be back anytime soon.

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BB
Philadelphia
13 reviews
4.0Dined on February 25, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

I would imagine it would be less noisy on a week night. The food was delicious!

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
5.0Dined on February 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food is amazing. One of our favorite spots and never disappoints!!!

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OT
Washington DC
3 reviews
4.0Dined on February 18, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Delicious food. Meatball appetizer outstanding! Excellent service also. I would return for sure.

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k
Philadelphia
4 reviews
5.0Dined on February 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Very enjoyable place to sit down with friends that serves great food.

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C
1 review
4.0Dined on February 17, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food was good but overpriced. Nice, intimate atmosphere. The restaurant is small and a party was very noisy when we were eating which made it difficult to hear each other. But the service was good and we loved that it was BYOB. Very nice staff. Thank you!

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HA
Philadelphia
33 reviews
3.0Dined on February 17, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 4

While we enjoyed our food, the portions have gotten smaller and the prices are high for Italian fare.

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
3.0Dined on February 14, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Food was average, but wayyyy overpriced for a byob.

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OT
New York Area
4 reviews
5.0Dined on February 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food is absolutely the best. Our hostess Cathy stayed on top of things the entire meal. It was a wonderful evening.

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OC
Philadelphia
1 review
5.0Dined on February 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

I went to this gem of a restaurant on Valentines day with a few people and the food was incredible. I am Italian and frequently cook Italian food so I rarely eat it out. The food was absolutely astounding and the services was amazing. Charming spot perfect for a date or dinner with friends.

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F
Philadelphia
92 reviews
5.0Dined on February 14, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

We always have a great meal at Cosina Forte.
The bread is delicious, the pasta fresh, the salads ample and filled with great ingredients.
We were there for Valentine’s Day and we still had a fun, relaxed meal.
My friend had lobster tail with gnocchi and I had the Greek style shrimp. We loved our entrees and the portions were generous! The restaurant did not have a special menu, so we felt we got exactly what we wanted for a great value. The service is always on the casual side but very friendly.

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H
Philadelphia
17 reviews
3.0Dined on February 13, 2018
Overall 3food 1service 5ambience 5

The food was too rich. No one could finish their entrees even though we all shared.

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J
Philadelphia
7 reviews
5.0Dined on February 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

2nd visit with my husband food is excellent! Can’t wait to return.

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FD
Philadelphia
2 reviews
5.0Dined on February 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exceptional meal enhanced by Maria’s visit to our table. Stuffed veal chop was the best. Gnocchi is always a table favorite

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SS
Atlantic City
9 reviews
5.0Dined on February 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent product, service was very good. Would definitely have another meal in the future

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B
Philadelphia
2 reviews
5.0Dined on January 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience, excellent food and the staff was very friendly and accommodating. I will definitely be back soon!!

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
4.0Dined on January 25, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

First time at the restaurant to celebrate a friends belated Birthday.
Service was great it was a quiet evening and our waiter Greg was attentive and very personable.
Nice time overall.

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j
Philadelphia
8 reviews
3.0Dined on January 20, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

I love Cucina Forte but have to admit that the service was off a little ... no doubt due to a large table... the noise level was too loud.... I know that's an issue on weekends...Food continues to be outstanding

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
5.0Dined on January 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Friendly lively atmosphere with excellent food and efficient attentive service.

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
4.0Dined on December 31, 2017
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

Enjoyed the food immensely which is what brings us back. But I will not go in winter weather again. We were seated by the front window which is in dire need of replacement or insulation. It was freezing!

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OT
New York Area
3 reviews
5.0Dined on December 31, 2017
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and great service! We will definitely return.

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M
Philadelphia
2 reviews
5.0Dined on December 31, 2017
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Gnocchi melted in your mouth!

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MB
Philadelphia
15 reviews
5.0Dined on December 23, 2017
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our adventure began with Mama Maria Forte taking my call to answer questions- her warmth and vibrancy shone through the telephone line. We arrived to be seated promptly and just as warmly as Maria had answered the phone. The food was great; the service spot on and the evening flew by as we enjoyed ourselves totally and utterly.
Be prepared for fun as your fellow patrons are just as warm and open as the proprietor and her staff.
And...you have to try the Gnocchi...you have to!

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OT
Philadelphia
1 review
5.0Dined on December 8, 2017
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best Gnocchi in Philly! And it's a BYOB, friendly staff.

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OT
Atlantic City
3 reviews
5.0Dined on December 8, 2017
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed dinner with friends before Andrea Bocelli concert. Italian with some twists. Crab stuffed portebello mushroom appetizer is not to missed. Vitello el Limone and Involtini Di Vitello were very nice veal selections. The Pollo Alla Forte and the cheese purses (a special) were very good. Service was great as the wait staff worked as a team and not assigned to individual tables. We were an early reservation so noise level and service may change later in the evening. Only drawback to being a small neighborhood restaurant, street parking is hard to find, plan accordingly.

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MD
Philadelphia
5 reviews
3.0Dined on December 8, 2017
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

It has been one of my favorite places to eat, but something has definitely changed! Service was great and our waiter Gregory was amazing. The gnocchi however were not up to par!!!

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