Dolce Vita

4.5
499 reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Our restaurant and wine bar have been serving authentic Italian cuisine in the City of Fairfax for over twenty years. It all starts with our unique brick oven, one of the first wood-fired ovens in NOVA, and our fresh pastas made in-house every day. The scents of garlic, tomatoes, and herbs follow you through the restaurant as you see the hand-painted murals covering our walls. These personal touches provide a cozy setting that takes you away to Italy and is perfect for any occasion. Our menu has a range of dishes, from traditional Italian offerings to unique personal selections. We are dedicated to using fresh ingredients from our own garden and sourced from other local farms. Dolce Vita always strives to be on the forefront of being creative and offering excellent food and service. All of us here welcome you with open arms and can’t wait to spend more memorable years with you!
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Private Dining

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Specials

Easter Restaurant Specials & Reservations

Happy Easter from Dolce Vita! Join us for a special Easter Brunch on Sunday, April 21st 10am-3pm. Our usual Dolce dinner 5-9:30pm.

Sunday, April 21, 2019

What 499 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
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.2
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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Jacksonville
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dolce Vita makes you feel at home, it has the perfect combination of attentive and friendly staff, superb customer service, delectable dishes & scrumptious desserts. The RISOTTO AL GAMBERI is succulent and velvety with the right amount of crispy pancetta and fresh shrimp. The FIG & PIG pizza is to die for, a combination of ricotta and mozzarella cheeses, fig jam, shaved red onion, and Prosciutto...
COZZE AL VAPORE is one of our favorite appetizers, An aromatic scent of fresh mussels steamed in a lobster broth and garlic white wine reduction, I Mean WoW...
We can never decide which desserts to go for, so instead we get at least 3 of them. Panna cotta, chocolate lava cake and our favorite the Tiramisu. A restaurant that never disappoints.

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GB
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on March 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent food at good price.

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OT
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on March 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Chicken Limone was delicious!

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PW
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food, great service. Booth was a must for us, as there was a large noisy party, but suspect that's not always the case! We will definitely be back.

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OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

We were 5-7 minutes late to our reservation at 8pm, but had called ahead to say so. We were seated the first table inside the door which was chilly on a cold night. Our server was great but the restaurant was out of many items including an appetizer, 2 entrees and dessert we had ordered which seemed excessive to me. The food was good but I ordered the risotto and scallops and while it was good it was not as tasty as one of my friends’ fettuccine carbonara. Live and learn. I think it’s overpriced for the ambiance (think mall pizza place interior where you’d expect faux grapes etc) but the food is tasty.

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K
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Loved the food! This place was fantastic, everything we ordered was delicious. This was our first time here and it will not be the last. We enjoyed every bite. It was super crowded so very glad we made reservations or we would not have gotten in.

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f
Washington DC
127 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Had an excellent dinner with friends the sauce was delicious. Also had a Caesar salad. My husband went with a traditional spaghetti & meatballs which he enjoyed. The others in our party said how very good their food was too. There was only 1 small item and that is the parking lot seems small. It was very full on the night we arrived. We solved that by parking about a 1/2 block away & walking over. The restaurant did offer valet parking.

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DL
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Always a go-to choice. Consistently good food and atmosphere. It says a lot about a place that retains the same staff over a long period of time and maintains its level of quality.

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J
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

We went for the Restaurant Week special, but found the offerings rather limited. Ordered off the regular menu. Service and food was excellent. The restaurant was packed and too noisy. Had to almost shout to talk and we were less than 2 feet apart.

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MP
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were immediately seated for lunch and treated like royalty! The service, food, and ambience was perfect; will definitely return! Loved it!

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JJ
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We tried this place based on reviews online. It didn't disappoint! The food was very good. We both have sensitivity to gluten and that wasn't an issue. Several GF options available. The severe was great. It was a little loud but we didnt have trouble hearing one another. The one thing that I didnt like was that the building was sort of smoky or something. There was like a haze in the dining area. But the food was fantastic and we would definitely go again.

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n
Washington DC
28 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

I have always enjoyed Dolce Vita but this last visit was not as good. I had made a reservation for the main restaurant and when we arrived they had us wait a bit then took us to the wine bar next door. I said that had made a reservation to be in dining room. She said we would have a very long wait. I was not happy. If I wanted to be in a wine bar I would have made the reservation there. The ambiance is very different. I have had the risotto shrimp with pancetta before and it was delicious. This meal was dried out and the shrimp was overcooked. I don't know if it sat under a lamp or what. But the risotto was dry and not moist and creamy. I was very disappointed. The waitress was very hurried and seemed to dash over and dash away before we had finished making an order. All in all it was not a great experience at a place we have been to quite often and bring people to.

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OT
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Meal was excellent. Even the wine recommendation was great. We would definitely go again.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was outstanding. We had never been there before but will return. Portions we large. One of the folks in our party commented that this is the best Italian restaurant they have been to in years.

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EO
Washington DC
29 reviews
Dined on February 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great lunch selections and cost. Would recommend for a good hearty lunch.

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LK
Washington DC
28 reviews
Dined on February 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Pleasant surprise! Have not been to Dolce Vita before but the food was delicious and the service was very nice. Our server was at the ready but not hovering, knew the menu and was helpful with suggestions. The duck was very good. I will go back again, thank you Dolce Vita!

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ML
1 review
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 2

Despite reservation depicting wheelchair accessible needed, hostess said our table was not ready and sat us at an uncomfortable table near the door. In addition, a car parked blocking the handicap sidewalk ramp. Waiter, valet very nice and helpful. Hostess was flippant and went on talking to other staff member after saying sorry. They watched us struggle with the door.

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OT
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 2food 5service 3ambience 2

Anniversary, we made a reservation, still had to wait 30 minutes and was at a crowded table area with limited “elbow room”. Food was great though

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OT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

We’ve eaten at Dolce Vita many times. The food is always good. The was the first time our servers were below what we’ve come to expect.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a lovely dinner. Food was good and the service was wonderful.

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OT
Washington DC
36 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

Was very mediocre Italian Food and service was just above ok. Probably better off at Olive Garden or Carrabba's.

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f
Richmond
83 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our favorite Italian restaurant! They're catering our wedding!

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Both food and services were very good. Enjoyed the seafood selection and had an overall excellent experiece. Highly recommend for any occasion.

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AP
Richmond
1 review
Dined on February 17, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 3

The food was good, but the server forgot our mozzarella app. Other than that his service is good.

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C
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place is one of my favorite placesin fairfax ! They are excellent!

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BS
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Dolce Vita is always a spectacular experience, whether you go in the evening for dinner or an afternoon in the wine bar you will not be disappointed. The food is always delightful and the staff is very attentive.

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e
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

I wrote this review very reluctantly. I love Dolce Vitas Regular menu. The regular menu is amazing and we love it. But this Valentines Day fixed dinner was awful. And I don’t base that on just my experience. I watched other people struggle through the courses just like I did. People forcing themselves to suffer through the 65.00 a person meal was torture. WE DIDNT EVEN GET BREAD WITH THIS OVERPRICED MEAL. They tried really hard to be fine dining. But it fell short. The courses were very inconsistent in size, presentation, and actual composition. The service was incredible slow, which we expected because it was busy but we watched the waiter serve many other tables often then occasionally coming to us. Which we expect also because being a younger couple we always get that. First course we both got the the beef carpaccio. They both came with a basic honey mustard sauce, they called a mustard aioli. Hers came with capers and mine did not. Mine came with shaved parmesean, hers did not. It was just terrible. The zuppe was a gross color and was so bland. The insalata was basic and nothing special. The next course. A pile of risotto that was hard to choke down. It ran laps around my plate between each bite. The fettuccini was basic and just buttered noodles with a hint of cheese. The main course was actually ok to eat. The Coq Au Vin chicken was barely warm and the flavor wasn’t great. I got the petite bone in lamb chops. Now I watched them bring pretty nice size portions to other tables. Mine literally had four bites of meat. Not even exaggerating. It was a good flavor but man wa so disappointed in the size. Finally we got dessert. She got a basic warmed up lava cake and I got the raspberry creme brûlée that was smaller than my spoon. Needless to say it was not worth the 130 bucks NOT including tip. We literally went to Taco Bell afterwards. I’m conclusion. DO NOT waste your time/money for valentines. But DO go for the regular menu

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PC
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I have and would reccomend this restaraunt to ANYONE. Great food. Great Value.

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h
Washington DC
14 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

We went on Valentine'ns Day -- and Dolce Vita offered a fix priced menu. So my review doesn't have as much relevance for those eating from their regular menu. My wife is a vegetarian and that left her with less than satisfactory options. The food was prepared well and they handled the packed restaurant well too. I thought they jacked up the price a bit for the menu -- which included an appetizer one two oysters, a small salad, a small pasta (Alfredo) and large lamb chop. I think the fixed price was $65. I would go back next year, but will likely try and find a different venue.

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CT
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Came here for Valentines Day and was a little disappointed that only the special menu was being served for the night compared to their full menu. Picked this restaurant because of the food reviews and was looking forward to certain selections to find them not available. The courses served were okay. Ambiance was nice and waiters were attentive.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 2ambience 3

We reserved a table for Valentines Day. We discovered after our arrival that the normal menu was suspended for the evening and all diners had to order the same five course dinner. Initially, we were seated outside the restaurant in an adjacent wine bar, about 15 feet from the bathroom. After requesting a different table, we were seated in the actual restaurant. During our meal, we were informed that our first two wine choices were out of stock. We were told the restaurant was out of bread, only to see bread served to another table ten minutes later. The meal was overpriced. We’ve been here before and enjoyed it. We were disappointed today.

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MM
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We thoroughly enjoyed our Valentine’s Day lunch. Dolche Vita continues to provide great food and experience.

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JS
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 5ambience 2

We sat in a cozy both in the main dining room. The kitchen is very close and open to the dining room at this location. This resulted in sights, sounds and smells not conducive to pleasurable dining. While food and service was very good, the distractions were too many. We’ll go back for the food, but we will dine next door in their wine bar.

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KO
New England
4 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The food was delicious and plentiful. Don't let the lack of parking or the look from the outside distract you. It was well worth it. We're going back again next month.

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OT
Washington DC
110 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love this restaurant. We have never had a bad meal or service.

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LF
Tampa
61 reviews
Dined on February 11, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 3

The angel hair pasta w/ marinara sauce was good, everything else mediocre. If this restaurant was located in NYC’s Little Italy, they wouldn’t survive. Nothing special going on here.

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AH
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

It was good, it was close to our event at GMU which is why we chose it. Food was good, not amazing. Lots of people packed into the place (very popular!); interiors need updating. Service was wonderful. Dessert (tiramisu) was delicious! It's not a place we'd be dying to go back to because it didn't "wow" us.

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CC
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Great Italian food close to home. Everything was delicious.

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n
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything we ordered was fresh and delicious!! Risotta with Shrimp is my favorite!!

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s
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

On a Friday night the place was full of families just finishing their meals, but by 7:00 many tables were empty and the noise level was comfortable. Next time we will arrive after the family crowd, so we can get a table away from the kitchen and away from the clatter and waves of heavy garlic aroma.

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