After owning a restaurant in their native Italy for over 30 years, owners Franca and Celso came to San Diego and opened Parma Cucina Italiana. Chef Celso prepares signature pasta dishes, and Franca is the dessert chef, creating delectable desserts made from scratch. The food at Parma Cucina Italiana features cuisine originating in Northern Italy and made from only fresh ingredients. The cozy atmosphere makes you feel like you are right in their home and not at a restaurant.
Some of Parma Cucina Italiana's specialties include the lasagna, penne salsiccia and tortellini. For something unique and authentic, try the chef's specialty dish of the day. No meal is complete without one of the tempting desserts like the tiramisu, gelato or lemon custard pie with pine nuts.
We so enjoyed our meal here while visiting San Diego. I felt as though I were really in Italy!
For an instant I felt I was in Florence. The food was ahh-mazing !! Our server had the best Italian accent and was very knowledgeable of the menu. His recommendations were excellent.
Most definitely my husband and I will come back.
Food is delicious! Great neighborhood restaurant. Dinning room is small and intimate
took my boyfriend here because of the good reviews (and he requested we go to an Italian place while in san diego) - the food was fantastic, the beer selection was minimal but they do have plenty of wine! our waiter was super attractive, made it that much better lol
they have outdoor seating (was heated overhead where we sat) - couldn't have been better :)
We had a fabulous late lunch. It was our first time at the restaurant. Will definitely return on our next trip to San Diego.
What a find! While the menu isn't huge, everything, yes, everything is scrumptious. Two of us had their special, pork shoulder with caponta and it was moist, melt-in-your-mouth moaning delicious! Our third guest had lasagna and said that it was without a doubt the best he had EVER eaten. Truly a gem. Nicola, our waiter was charming (loved the true Italian accent) and knew the wine list well. I was visiting San Diego from San Francisco, and this foodie doesn't get blown away like this often. Can't wait till my next business trip to San Diego!
Fantastic flavor of the pasta makes this restaurant five stars.
My wife had the Lasagna and said it was the best she has ever had.
I had the Fagottini al tartufo and it was wonderful.
They waiter was very attentive and friendly. This small restaurant is located on a colorful street, providing fun people-watching while dining.
Parma Cucina was an amazing Italian restaurant. Great food and service. If back in San Diego, will highly consider a return trip. A+
In the three months I lived in San Diego I ate at Parma 4 times, with each time still better than the last. The service is excellent, and the food is even better.
Wonderful dinner - truly Italian.
The food was the real deal! Excellent! The service and ambience perfect for our anniversary. Our bew fave Italian hands down.
Intimate location with incredible food. Staff was amazing. It was clear they were running lean and a little stressed but never wavered in politeness and a smiles. Very professional. Food arrived quickly and hot. So very delicious and the noodles were to die for. Hope to return again!
Great food - a bit noisy. Service was a bit slow to fill water glasses, ask if we wanted more wine, etc. Food was excellent but being such a small place was a bit noisy.
Small restaurant but not a confined feel. Service was good. Food was very good. Not a good place for an intimate meal, way too noisy.
We enjoyed our dinner and the service was great! The restaurant is quaint in an interesting neighborhood. There were srx of us and three had the lasagne. Each couple had a different bottle of red wine. Desserts were delicious!
The food was amazing and prepared with authenticity that is unparalleled. Freshly made pasta and the lasagna is to die for!! The appetizers and desserts are great too. They have a good wine selection to pair with the food. A must try!
So authentic and delicious :)
I have been here several times and always get something on special. I have never been disappointed.
Fabulous food. Waiters are delightful and helpful with wine and food choices.
Food is always great. Park in the structure as street parking can be challenging.
Call for reservations!
The food was delicious!! The service was great! Will definitely go back!
Delicious fresh and authentic entrees; charming and attentive staff
This is a wonderful Italian restaurant in Hillcrest. We have been there several times, and the food is always excellent! We especially love the pasta choices and the tiramisu is really delicious! Service is very good in this small, intimate restaurant.
Nice little Italian restaurant with good food and reasonable prices. My only complaint was that it was extremely difficult to find a parking spot.
I would highly recommend this gem as the real deal - authentic Italian food with a fantastic ambience and great service. Love the fact that the waiters spoke Italian - made me feel like I was back in Italy!!! Will definitely be returning and recommending it to our friends..
this is a very well done traditional Italian restaurant. the food and service were excellent, we especially liked the home made pasta !
Great little local restaurant - emphasis on the little. If you don't mind rubbing elbows with the other diners the food is a decided plus. The wait staff are almost all charming and helpful, lots of smiles and who doesn't love an Italian accent?
This was the best Italian restaurant I've been to, hands down. The food was beautifully prepared with fresh, tasty ingredients. It's clear why this is the top rated Italian restaurant in San Diego.
I had the Tortellini Pasticciati and my wife had the Ravioli in Rosa. Both were delightful! The pasta is clearly housemade and the sauces were very flavorful. This is a very small restaurant, but the tastes were quite large!
This was a great meal with attentive service. I had tagliatelle w/ shrimp and a pesto sauce, while my wife ate Lasagna. The pesto was probably the best I've ever eaten. The lasagna was incredibly well-cooked -- the noodles were amazing.
Can't say enough good things about the food. Best meal I ate from appetizer to dessert in San Diego.
Some of the best pasta our group has had in a long time. Everyone ordered something different and each was spectaculor. Definately recommend and will be a repeat customer. Service was great and food outstanding.
Food is always amazing and it's such a cozy little shop. My only complaint would be finding parking in Hillcrest, but the food and service is worth it.
Make Reservations! This is a small place. We went to Italy a couple year ago, Parma makes food that taste like what we ate in Italy. Awesome food, great, friendly service. The lasagna is wonderful. The Barrata is house made and a must.
Authentic Italian. brasato con polenta was like we make at home. Tagliatelle con Saliciccia was excellent too. Good portion sizes. Like an Italian trattoria. We will return
We were in San Diego for a meeting and Parma received such excellent reviews we thought we'd try it. What luck! Delightful neighborhood gem. Food was just delicious and service was superb - everyone just so kind and helpful. We really enjoyed our evening, remembered the food with smiles the next day and highly recommend this restaurant. Don't miss it when you are in the area.
We were visiting San Diego a few week ago over the Halloween holiday. We were very pleased to find Parma Cucina Italiana and enjoyed a great meal. A gem of a small friendly neighborhood restaurant. The food was delicious and well presented. We felt like we were in northern Italy. We shared some dishes and the waitress graciously served us. When we return to San Diego we will be returning to Parma.
My husband and I have been trying several 4+ rated Italian restaurants recently. A friend recommended Parma. We tried it the first time last Friday. We ordered one of their specials of the night, and were presently surprised how authentic and how well balanced the dish tasted. It was truly a wonderful experience. We compared it with a top rated restaurant in La Jolla where we just dined a couple of nights ago. Both my husband and I thought Parma tasted more authentic and more memorable. We also liked Parma's smaller, more family style surroundings. The server was great, polite, efficient, non-intrusive, and understood customers' needs very well. We felt we were dinging in Italy. Definitely will go back again.
Outstanding food and service - really authentic Italian food and service! The menu is rather limited, but the food is outstanding, as is the service. Very good prices for what you get.
Very friendly staff. Great atmosphere. Great food.
The servers really are Italian and are very good. The food is high quality.
Music is awful for my taste, should be more Italian than techno
Noise level is high because of the music, but all in all a pleasurable
This restaurant was a unique find in San Diego. I was looking for a nice dinner to take my girlfriend while we vacationed. We arrived and i was quite surprised at the small, quaint size of the restaurant. We were immediately greeted with smiles and a great atmosphere. Our server was excellent, the wine was delicious, and most of all the food was incredible. Delicious and satisfying, this is a must-go.
Yes, you can speak Italian here, and la cameriera e il cuoco (that's waitress, who's spent time in Italy, and the cook) will not only understand you, but converse with you. Parma Cucina Italiana is a quaint (small) restaurant that serves a large meal. A selection from le prima piatti will be sufficient. A second plate is more than enough to share, as is one selection, but then you get to take some home. Menu is not extensive. One might say the opposite. But, what is served is genuine, homemade, not the usual fare one might fine in a chain restaurant serving Italian food. Only drawback is parking. Bring some cash or a card, then park on the street if you're really lucky, or in a lot nearby.
A wonderful gem of an Italian Restauarant, with genuine, fresh, authentic, home made Italian cuisine.
We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves on a recent visit, and were made to feel welcome; however, the noise level is distracting.
A few gallons of noise absorbing paint on the ceiling would reduce this annoyance, while still maintaining the hub-bub of an Italian Local Restauarant.
Food and wine are VERY reasonably priced.
A bargain and a gem