Al Dente

4.2
1142 Reviews
$30 and under
Italian
Guests can enjoy fresh house-made pasta, fresh fish and meat offerings along with Italian desserts. Al Dente also showcases Neapolitan pizza from the restaurant’s centerpiece oven.


Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace

Featured specials

Select a special by choosing a date, time and party size

New Year's Eve Special Menus & Offers

Dine in
Starting Dec 31, 2021

Ring in the New Year at Al Dente with a family style Italian feast for $39.95 per person!

Christmas Eve Special Menus & Offers

Dine in
Starting Dec 24, 2021

Indulge in our family style Italian feast on Christmas Eve for $39.95 per person!

What 1142 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.1
service
4.1
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
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W
vipWinifred
Washington DC
30 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food exceptional - everything was delicious
With nice outdoor seating!

OK
OKay
1 review
Dined on November 14, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Was looking for moderately-priced, Italian-kitchen restaurant. Range of dishes was very good. Wine list showed interesting Italian wines.

H
Hsolfoodie
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent food & service.

AC
AnnieChiquitica
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Top quality, as always!

i
ilhant
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Authentic Italian food. This is the DeChiara & Roberto Donna style of Sicilian authenticity we have been craving for. The last time I remember this authenticy at Capri Italian Restaurant in McLean.
Calamari, seafood/clams/mussels pasta and pizzas... Tomato sauce is beautifully done as expected. This was the first time we made it there and we'd be definitely going back.

n
vipneighbor
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience4

This restaurant used to be very good - it has evidently declined.

p
vippeats
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Really good food. My only complaint is that waiter and bus person constantly wanted to remove plates from our table when others at the table were not finished eating.

DI
vipDanI
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience3

Good food, good service. Can’t take that for granted anymore.

g
greg
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Busy Friday night - prompt seating, good service, Calamarata - seafood/pasta dish was top notch, great place.

PG
PatrickG
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great value for the money. It is a relaxed place to go with family and friends.

BB
BettyB
Raleigh
7 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service

DS
vipDanielS
Detroit
16 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience2

Food was just ok. Place was loud and disorganized. We had party of 5 and they packed us into a 4 top in between two 6-8 tops.

RO
RickOfDC
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 22, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Good experience. I would go there again. However it is pricey for lunch, so I put only a fair value.

DO
DonalO
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

This is a wonderful restaurant to have lunch outdoors on a warm sunny day!

DC
vipDCSteven
Washington DC
51 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience2

Al Dente has long been a solid neighborhood Italian resto with first-rate pizzas and pastas along with hidden gems like the lentil soup, focaccia basket, calamari, risotto specials and the like. The wine-by-the-glass menu is also far more varied than most informal Italian restaurants. It feels like both the food and service have gotten a bit more perfunctory at Al Dente as the years have gone by. But it's still a good choice.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great evening

MC
vipMichelleC
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience2

Food was ok..disappointed they did not have 3 out of the 5 desserts on their dessert menu

D
vipDcdoglover
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service3ambience4

It took us 15 minutes to get a glass of wine. The maitre’d was aware of the problem and did nothing. At the very least , we should have been comped for the wine when we eventually got it.

L
Letts
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2021
Overall2food2service3ambience2

We waited almost an hour for our food, pizza was undercooked, but the salad was good. If u go, go before 6:00 or after 8:00.

B
vipBrookner1
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2021
Overall3food2service4ambience4

The kitchen seems to have lost a step. The wine and service carried the day.

M
vipMasha
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2021
Overall2food3service2ambience4

Very poor service wait staff no where to be found. Food is slipping … must be using cheaper ingredients. The meatballs tasted differently and the sausage in the pizza was terrible and different too.

T
vipTaii
Washington DC
49 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall3food4service4ambience3

Very busy on a Saturday evening. Our waitor had a great demeanor but was extremely busy, covering a large territory. Result, service and kitchen service was slow. Management needs to consider adding more staff for busy evenings.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Dallas
1 review
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall2food1service2ambience3

Service was not good. Dinner came out one meal at a time with 15 minutes between first and third dinner being served. Lasagna was soupy and salmon was way over cooked.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall1food4service1ambience3

Literally the worst service I have had at a restaurant, ever. The staff, including the maitre d, were mostly absent, then rude and dismissive when they very rarely appeared. It took over 45 minutes from ordering simple food (pizza, plain salad, soup) for the food to appear and no one checked in on our party in the meantime. We had young children who literally could not wait that long for their food and started to cry.
It was the lunch hour on a Saturday and there were maybe 4 other occupied tables, so the restaurant was not busy. We also had a reservation, so it's not like the restaurant was unprepared for our arrival.
The food tasted good when it finally arrived, but by then it was too late to salvage any enjoyment out of the meal. Some dishes were not going to come at all, but were finally given to us in takeout bags on the way out--1.5 hours after we first sat down.
On a stressful day for our families, what should have been a respite became a complete disaster. We received the complete opposite of hospitality. This place should close and let a friendlier neighborhood restaurant take its place. We will not go back.

BK
BrianK
Las Vegas
3 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Dirty ladies bathroom. Entree eggplant parm burned

UN
vipUpperNWfoodie
Washington DC
14 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2021
Overall2food3service1ambience3

We had an 8:15 reservation for 2. We watched as the bustling restaurant emptied out before we were served our entrées at 9:40. We were patient and hadn’t complained because we know that many restaurants are having staffing issues, but when the manager came to our table as we were finishing our entrées and asked if we’d like another round, I asked if I could get a half glass of wine since I was nearly finished with my meal. He replied that the restaurant doesn’t serve half glasses and suggested that we order a glass and split it, apparently not noticing that my daughter was drinking beer. I smiled and asked if that was the case even if we had waited over an hour for our entrées, to which he brusquely said, “Everyone had to wait tonight, we were very busy.” This in a dining room that was now empty except for my daughter and me. I was stunned at his attitude and lack of professionalism. For a half glass of wine he could have ensured a happy ending to our dining experience and customer loyalty. We won’t be going back anytime soon. P.S. We tipped the waiter 15%, as this was not his fault.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Best happy hour deals in town. Great people watching if you sit outside

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
13 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Delicious Pasta!!!

Report
OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent. Staff very good and personable

SE
SherwinE
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was perfect. My kids are very picky about their pasta and they both devoured and finished their plates!

L
vipLeeb
Philadelphia
116 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent meal and gluten free options. Service was fantastic

DC
DCFoodie
Washington DC
56 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Al Dente was bustling on Saturday night. We elected to eat outdoors, which was a good choice as the inside was crowded and noisy. The food was good -- not great (except for their foccacia basket) -- and service was very slow, perhaps because they were also doing a brisk carry-out business or because they are having trouble recruiting kitchen staff (our waiter was very attentive, the food was just slow coming from the kitchen). We were delighted, however, to find Happy Hour applied to Saturday evenings as well, so the price of several house specials was very good. Al Dente is definitely a good neighborhood spot, and that showed with the number of families that were present.

F
vipFoodie
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delightful outdoor eating featuring that brilliant chef, Roberto Donna, I’m told. Whoever, the creation of rigatoni with truffles, crispy shredded leek , is scrumptious.

a
vipanon
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on September 9, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

great outdoor seating. (inside can be noisy though)

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on September 3, 2021
Overall2food4service1ambience2

Good, as always, is great. Al Dente has service issues (typical these days) that really take away from the experience. Sat with water only and no waiter for 30 mins before getting anyone to assist. Appetizer didn’t come until the entree, and then one entree didn’t come at all. Was easy to see they were short staffed, but if that is the case you don’t stuff the restaurant full of people. That’s a true recipe for disappointment.

P
vipPattywubaci
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on September 3, 2021
Overall2food5service5ambience5

They were trying very hard but we were not seated until almost an hour after we arrived.

SD
vipSaraD
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2021
Overall2food1service3ambience3

I don’t know what’s happened to Al Dente. Over the years I’ve been here frequently and always had wonderful food and drink. But this latest lunch was dismal. The pastas were swimming in sauces that managed to be both thin and gloopy. The “chicken” in one looked and tasted as if it had come out of a can. My companion sent his back and I could only eat about 1/.3 of mine before giving up. The bread and wine were fine. Maybe this is because of staff shortage due to pandemic? I hope they get back up to speed.

BD
vipBrianDespard
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on August 31, 2021
Overall4food3service4ambience4

We had pizzas which were fresh and tasty. The service was good, and the food was served promptly. A separate salad unfortunately suffered from a very bitter dressing, but the focaccia bread was excellent. We eat outside in a quite attractive setting. In the past we have been disappointed in the quality of the pastas at Al Dente, but think that maybe pizzas are their forte. We will be back to try them again.

e
eatoutoftn
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

As we dined on the outside patio, noise level was not an issue. For almost $13 the zucchini blossoms (while very good) were on the pricey side. There were only 3 and the plate was filed w a bunch of tempura zucchini sticks. The 2 personal pizzas were fine and the waiter was great about accommodating requested variations from the menu and boxing leftovers.

p
vippetelx
Washington DC
17 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Extraordinary pizzas and first class Italian fare. A neighborhood gem. Keep it to yourself!

FAQs

Al Dente does offer delivery in partnership with Uber Eats. Al Dente also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (202) 244-2223.

Al Dente is rated 4.2 stars by 1142 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

Tweets by Al Dente