Mother Anna's

4.4
622 reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Four Generations of Fine Italian Cuisine! Boston’s historic North End is known for its many Italian restaurants. Over the last 80 years, many of these establishments have come and gone. None have stood the test of time quite like Mother Anna’s. Established in 1932, Mother Anna’s has passed through four generations of families. John Caparella, along with his three sons, have carried on the tradition that his grandmother started 79 years ago.

The last 20 years have brought on many changes in the North End. The number of restaurants have gone from the single digits, back in the early days, to close to a hundred. Also, the old Central Artery that had divided the North End for so many years, has since disappeared.

Mother Anna’s has now become the gateway to the North End. On a beautiful summer night, a table on the now famous patio gives customers a view of the Boston skyline that can only be experienced at Mother Anna’s. Mother Anna’s should not be missed!
What 622 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.4
service
4.0
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food

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KC
New England
6 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Delicious chicken parm for my son and yummy pollo Venezia for me. Divine tiramisu and cappuccino. All in all an amazing visit to the North End.

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JT
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food, prompt courteous wait staff. It was a perfect evening.

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OT
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Specials were excellent. Salads not memorable. Atmosphere low keyed which was welcome. Friendly staff. Neighborhood restaurant atmosphere.

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LN
New England
8 reviews
Dined on April 15, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 2

We got off to a very rocky start. Dirty dishes and silver are a big no-no!

After ordering a few of the specials, we were told they would come with salad. I don't know why some restaurants refuse to pay the salad any attention. It was pale, wilted, almost browning lettuce, a huge hunk of un-ripened tomato, a single black olive, and a sprinkling of canned green beans. Yes, for those who didn't catch that the first time, I'll repeat myself: CANNED GREEN BEANS. Pale, tasteless, mushy, but plenty of that gross canned flavor green beans. WTF?

Now, the rest of dinner was wonderful. The eggplant rollatini is a work of art. The aforementioned specials were indeed special. But I'm not sure any of it makes up for the atrocity that was the canned green beans...

The place could definitely do with a bit of updating. The bathrooms are a nightmare. The only thing that saves it is the outdoor patio, which is a rarity in the North End. Especially with a beautiful view of the city skyline.

As I have noted in other reviews, there are literally dozens of other restaurants in the North End that are all fabulous. To complete, you have to be fabulous, and Mother Anna's just isn't.

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OT
New England
4 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

Food and service great, owner super friendly. This was not our first visit and we returned for the food and atmosphere.
So we made our reservation 90+ days in advance.
Marathon weekend is always full, but putting a table of four into a room with a large party is not acceptable. The other table was VERY loud, so much so that we could not hear the conversation at our table. Our “squeeze” in table was unpleasant and we won’t return on marathon weekend

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WW
Orlando
3 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I am still dreaming about our pre Boston Marathon carb loading dinner. It's a definitely a new tradition and we look forward to coming back next year!

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DE
1 review
Dined on April 14, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Our reservation was confirmed by OpenTable via email as 4:00 pm, yet Mother Anna's called the day before to confirm the reservation for 5:00 pm. Our party was fine with the adjustment and they added 2 more seats to our reservation, but the person calling me said that this time discrepancy had never happened before with OpenTable. We loved our dinner, service, and evening there beginning at 5 pm.

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CT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Love Mother Anna's, we visit whenever we're in town and always recommend this to others. Great food - entertaining staff.

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JT
New England
1 review
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Food was fantastic. Waitress was equally great. Overall management was poor - told me on phone didn’t have my reservation for 16 but it had been confirmed x2. Said she couldn’t hear me one phone when we showed up at restaurant they actually had reservation. Seated in basement which was fine bc we had kids but forgot about us and had to go up after 15 to request a waitress. Seemed like sat night chaos but yummy food which made up for annoyances

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JR
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food. Very friendly service make sure you have a reservation so that you can get in because it was very busy that night

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OT
New England
5 reviews
Dined on March 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Very accomodating with a dairy allergy. Much appreciated.

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RL
1 review
Dined on March 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My wife got her favorite food, shrimp exquisito, and it was excellent. Our daughter had chicken Marsala and the waitress offered the Marsala sauce on the pasta side dish which she enjoyed.

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OT
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 1

After getting seated in the unfinished basement with the exposed waste pipes being held together with plastic bags and napkins it became an immediate turnoff for our table of seven. Not to mention the noxious smell emanating from the outdated rusty restrooms. The hostess seemed overwhelmed which also naturally set the tone to be unpleasant right from the get go

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Warm and welcoming

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BR
New England
15 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 3

Great litt spot in the North End. It's been a favorite of my wife and I for many years.

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KH
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The food and service was excellent. I would highly recommend this restaurant.

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J
1 review
Dined on March 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was authentic Italian cuisine and the service was great.

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SD
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on March 18, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 3

Had a wonderful time for my wife’s birthday dinner. Food was great and so was the service.

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EO
1 review
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Very tasty food at super reasonable prices! Delicious chicken and eggplant dish! Great char-grilled chicken! Terrific gnocchi! Awesome lobster ravioli! Very friendly service.

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OT
New England
12 reviews
Dined on March 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Staff was dry friendly food and drinks were awesome!

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MT
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Food was amazing! I had the lobster ravioli and it was delicious. It was very loud/busy so if you are looking for a quiet restaurant this isn't for you. If you are looking for fun, high energetic place - this is it!

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WA
New England
3 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 3

Seemed understaffed, which hasn't been a problem in past visits to this restaurant. No host/hostess available on arrival. Took about 20 minutes after reservation to be seated. Server only stopped by our table a few times; he seemed overbooked on tables. Food was very good, though salads are only okay.

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

We Love Mother Anna’s!! We visit every time we are in Boston! The food and service is the best!

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j
1 review
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great dinner/family time Saturday night...our waiter was excellent! Thank you!

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T
Salt Lake City
10 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Incredible rich complex and tasty tomato sauce.
Love all their parmigiana dishes especially their famous eggplant.
Large portions, quality veal and shrimp dishes, nothing could be better or needs to be improved.
Awesome food at cheap prices.

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DO
New England
2 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 3

Our waitress, Constance made the experience wonderful. She was a phenomenal professional and really knows her job. She refilled glasses without having to be asked. Her timing was perfect. She was friendly and always had a smile on her face. The food was excellent. I was disappointed that although I made a reservation for 5, the hostess seemed surprised that we were there. She quickly threw a 5th plate onto a table for 4. I saw other tables for 6, where 5 people were seated. And we had a reservation. The ambiance is acceptable but not at a crowded table for 4. People were brushing by our 5th person throughout the entire meal, making it uncomfortable. This was our first visit to Mother Anna's and not sure I would return for this reason alone. It's too bad. We were celebrating a 50th birthday. Had I known it was going to be so uncomfortable, I would have chosen a different location.

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OT
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Dinner was delicious. Service was excellent.

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CL
1 review
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My brother and I eat here at least once a month. Best food in the North End.

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KS
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Mother Anna's has wonderful service and delicious food. I think with a wooden floor it would look a lot nicer but otherwise atmosphere was fine.

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J
New England
3 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

We waited a half hour for a table and we had a reservation. They gave us a free app for waiting and our waitress was great and very apologetic

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RA
New England
2 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service I would recommend to anyone try this restaurant.

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MP
New England
2 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

This is a restaurant where one can take family. It's a good example of the restaurants common to the North End years ago. The food is very good with excellent service. I always order the Eggplant Parmesan and I've never been disappointed. There is no problem here with sharing a dish. Delicious food at a good price.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Great spot for Italian. Old-school feel will bring back memories of family dinners.

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DS
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Authentic italian American cuisine. Wonderful service and a very diverse menu of entrees. You will not be disappointed. Best deal of the North End.

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LA
New England
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time for us - wanted to go to to an old time north end staple vs. the newer restaurants and we weren't disappointed! Excellent food, friendly service, nice ambience - especially the view of the city. Can't wait to take the neighbors there! Thank you!

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KR
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 3

Very disappointed, I heard rave reviews but the server was not very polite, and never brought our drinks. The chicken parmigiana was good but the pasta was too salty to eat.

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BB
New England
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Excellent on all ends- one of the best spots in the north end

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AG
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 4

Everything was great except for our pathological lying server. I asked if I could change the side of pasta from linguine with red sauce to have Alfredo sauce, no we can’t do that. Asked a few other options, she said they weren’t able to do any of them. Finally saw they had a section of seafood pastas 3 different types of pastas, 3 different types of seafood (shrimp, scallops, and lobster). I asked if I could get the fettuccine with scallops and lobster. What do ya think she said... nope we can’t do it. I said that makes no sense, so eventually she said she’d ask the kitchen. Comes back, “we will allow you to do that”. Get my food and it has a brown looking sauce on it, I asked her what that was, she says “Marsala sauce, did you not want that?” I said “no, why does it have Marsala?” She said “all of those seafood pastas in that section come with Marsala”. I was a bit confused as that’s never been a typical sauce for seafood pasta dishes and I couldn’t remember exactly what the menu said so I said okay can you change it and she had it remade. During that time I took a look at the menu, no where did it mention the word Marsala in that section of pastas. Before we left I asked the single host who was running the show the whole night if I could see a menu, then I asked her, pointing to the section of pastas I ordered from, “what sauce would you serve with these” she said “a white or garlic white wine sauce”, so I said “thanks, just so you know I was given Marsala sauce and blamed for the mistake of the order”. I would like to think the other staff would be more open to pleasing the customer and not lie about their food, because all other places I’ve been in the north end are very willing and accommodating.
She was the only thing that had a negative impact on the experience, other than that I was very pleased.

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OT
New England
6 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great dinner!

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