Al Dente

4.3
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969 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Al Dente serves theItalian Cuisine by Chef Roberto Donna. Guests can enjoy fresh house-made pasta, risotto, fresh fish and meat offerings along with Italian desserts and a selection of gelato. Al Dente also showcases Neapolitan pizza from the restaurant’s centerpiece oven.
Al Dente is located next to American University

What 969 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.1
service
3.9
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
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c
Washington DC
14 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience4

All very good as usual

GG
Washington DC
13 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience3

Food was excellent - great selection. Atmosphere was a bit spartan - reminded me a little of a fast food restaurant. Tablecloths would have been a good touch.

f
Baltimore
1 review
Dined on November 3, 2019
Overall3food3service4ambience4

Food was ok, nothing special. The Ceaser salad was great, the salmon, just ok, Our waiter was very attentive. Would I go back? Yes, next time I am in the mood for Italian.

KH
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

The food is always outstanding at Al Dente. The service has been spotty in the past but at this visit it was excellent. The wine list is also superlative. The only change the restaurant could make is to dim the bright lighting a bit.

GS
Washington DC
134 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Always enjoy dining at Al Dente. The homemade pasta is a hidden treasure in DC. I had pasta with wild boat and a red sauce and vegetables that was superb. My date enjoyed a pasta Bolognese. We shared a large, fresh Romaine lettuce salad with homemade croutons, anchovies, hardboiled egg. Started the evening with two expertly crafted martinis and during out meal a superb red wine.

SN
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience3

We came around 1pm and it had been raining in the morning so we figure that is why it was not busy. Service was great and attentive. We had the bottomless brunch which I highly recommend. Food and drinks were delicious . Would recommend to anyone.

a
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

We had an amazing dinner for my birthday. We shared the family menu, ate delicious, abundant food! Excelent quality for the money, worth visiting!

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 8, 2019
Overall3food3service2ambience3

Of our party of 6, two were served their entree and the other four had to wait 15 minutes to get theirs. Totally unacceptable.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

So great! Amazing food. Great ambiance. Check it out when you can!

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall3food4service4ambience3

Really good Italian food made with inspiration!

T
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience2

The food is always good but they were very busy Friday night and the service was very slow and the noise level was at shouting.

ED
Orlando
4 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Service was a bit slow and servers seemed frantic. Food was good. Was a bit too noisy to have a conversation with my elderly mother, but she liked the ambience nonetheless.

OP
Washington DC
83 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall4food4service2ambience3

We have been here many times. It was very busy. Server detached and overwhelmed. Very noisy. Food was good. Surprisingly ungracious experience.

E
Tampa
159 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We always enjoy Al Dente. The food is very good and the service is very good as well. We'll be back!

OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience3

We enjoy the food and the laid back environment. The service is always excellent.

RB
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

A beautiful evening to sit outside...pizza was among the best in DC and the fig appetizer was delicious!

G
Washington DC
30 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Chef Donna's wine dinners are amazing. The food and wine pairings are just exemplary. If you've never attended on of Roberto's wine dinners, you are missing a culinary wonder.

SF
Washington DC
18 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2019
Overall3food2service5ambience4

We frequent Al Dente for its excellent pizzas. The al fresco dining is especially pleasant in good weather. But indoor dinner on this rainy night was subpar. The artichoke was swimming in vinaigrette and was tough and fibrous. The soft shell crab penne pasta dish was a salty mess. While the single deep fried crab was OK, the sauce consisted of water, dozens of capers and dozens of black olives, as well as scattered boiled pieces of crab. A very poor creation. We will stick to the pizzas.

R
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2019
Overall5food3service5ambience5

I dine here often with my wife and friends. Typically the food is great but I’ll get back to that in a minute. The ambience is to my liking, there’s a nice big woodfired oven that serves as the focal point of the restaurant. It may actually be fueled with natural gas, but it makes a great pizza, although I rarely order that because there are so many other great choices on the menu. The noise level will vary depending on the number of patrons that are in the place this was a Sunday night and it was pretty quiet. I ordered one of the specials described as red snapper and I felt that the fish was unusually tough it tasted almost like a rock fish to me. I commented to the waitress and she immediately offered to take the entrée back. The chef conceded that it did seem to be an unusually tough piece of fish and they prepared me a brand new entrée. It too was strangely tough although a noticeable improvement over the first cut. I was so puzzled by this that I had to go and doublecheck what I thought a red snapper was. What I discovered, albeit on the Internet, was that there is such a thing as pacific red snapper that is in fact a member of the rockfish family. So if that’s true, I guess I can’t really fault the restaurant for calling it red snapper, but for those of us on the East Coast we are familiar with rockfish and we are familiar with red snapper and those two fish are not the same thing not in texture, taste or appearance. While my entree on this evening was below what I typically expect I still have to rate them hi for doing their level best to please me. I will definitely be returning to this restaurant. I will just need to be a bit more inquisitive about what the heck I’m ordering.

E
Tampa
159 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was excellent and our waiter Peter was excellent too.

WD
Washington DC
61 reviews
Dined on July 22, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Great service, very good variety of Italian dishes all at very reasonable prices.
A neighborhood gem.

M
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

We went on Sunday for the Tuscan Wine Dinner. It was fantastic. Great food and wonderful wine pairings. Food is always fresh and delicious. Homemade pastas and tasty ragus. Their pizza is always excellent as well.

O
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Neighborhood gem. Always a pleasure to dine at Al Dente!

W
Pittsburgh
27 reviews
Dined on July 19, 2019
Overall3food4service4ambience3

Don't expect any "Wow" moments at Roberto Donna's restaurant but the cooking is quite solid overall.

V
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall4food3service3ambience4

The service was OK but the food could have been better. The pasta was too tough and the fish was on the dry side.

D
Baltimore
22 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall3food4service3ambience2

The noise level was high and the service was slow and spotty. Food was good, the salmon.

OT
1 review
Dined on June 27, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Waiter was attentive but we ordered meatballs (ordered a bunch of antipasti) which never arrived.

J
Washington DC
16 reviews
Dined on June 26, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Delicious meal and great service. A neighborhood gem I will return to more often.

OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on June 25, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Very nice experience.

MZ
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on June 22, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

I was disappointed that my main dish came out luke warm instead of hot.. I have ordered this fish dish before and usually comes out very hot.. They manager asked me how everything was and I told him.. He did nothing about ! No goodwill gesture!

J
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Food great
Wait staff serves food but no advice

ES
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on May 27, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Great food and and great value. Chef is amazing. Really enjoyed it

C
Washington DC
24 reviews
Dined on May 26, 2019
Overall4food3service3ambience5

Great restaurant with great food

S
Washington DC
19 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience3

Had a couple fish dishes, pork, and pasta and risotto. Pasta and risotto dishes were excellent.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service

FB
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on May 22, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Waitress was friendly but not great. Forgot bread. She forgot my drink and we waited for a long time after we finished our meal for her to come back to ask if we wanted dessert or the bill. In fact she didn’t ask about dessert... just offered us the bill.

FD
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on May 22, 2019
Overall5food5service3ambience5

Al Dente is by far the best Italian meal in D.C. Their food is absolutely incredible!

i
Washington DC
41 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

This is such a neighborhood gem. We were there for Mother’s Day and it did not disappoint. Food was excellent. Server was attentive. Great selection of food, all perfectly prepared.

DB
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall1food1service3ambience3

Our waitress was lovely but the food was not it's usual quality.

ML
Detroit
22 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2019
Overall5food5service3ambience4

The wine dinner was fun. Food was terrific and all enjoyed the meal. Service was slow but friendly. My favorite wine was the Prosecco.

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