Centro Restaurant

4.7
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2375 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Conveniently located in downtown Des Moines lives one of the city’s most popular restaurants, Centro. The urban eatery specializes in delicious Italian-inspired food featuring fresh ingredients and masterful preparation by Chef George Formaro and Executive Chef Jon Baker. Whether you’re ordering a multi-course meal or grabbing a drink and pizza at the bar, Centro’s lively, casual yet upscale atmosphere makes it perfect for dining with friends, family, clients and business associates.
What 2375 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.7
service
4.6
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
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BC
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service, the food was fantastic and my water was always full.

SK
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Centro was fabulous as always! They were very accommodating with a booster seat for a child and our waitress was spot on. Food was incredible so thank you to the Chefs in the kitchen!

CJ
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Centro is our go to place for lunch before a Civic Center performance. We have never been disappointed. The food is always excellent.

K
San Joaquin
14 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Perfect place for a great and quick meal. Consistently good, service impeccable.

I
Palm Springs
24 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

The food tasted good but was not the caliber of what I read about in reviews. It was very overpriced pasta for my entree. Tasted good but no different than other places half the price. I expected way more based on reviews. Also, the venue is interesting but seemed to lack something...not sure how to say it. Just did not feel like the amazing place that I read about in reviews. I hate to give a 3 but just doesn’t seem to deserve higher based on my experience. Maybe was an off night or something.

K
San Joaquin
15 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place to dine! Food was wonderful and our server was outstanding!

G
Des Moines
3 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Tomato Basil soup & very tasty chicken Panini

OT
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on October 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service as always!

AB
Chicago
1 review
Dined on October 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I have had the pleasure dining at your restaurant several times & never disappointed. Great for entertaining clients and enjoying lunch with friends.

J
Des Moines
6 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My husband and I met at Centro for our first date 11 years ago today. Eight years ago today we were married. Every year for our anniversary we come back and enjoy everything about Centro. Thank you for helping us celebrate our love!

DM
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very cordial staff and the food was delicious. A great experience that we'll do again!

OT
Des Moines
5 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always great!!

OT
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Birthday dinner

i
New York Area
34 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good food and good company. The service was excellent and timely.

LW
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food and service were very good as usual! We did eat outside and there was a pretty noisy vent fan.

AK
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service, the service staff was very prompt, attentive and friendly. Food and drinks were amazing. I had the vegan sausage pizza, I was happy to find that on the menu. Can't wait to go back!

BB
Kansas City
8 reviews
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Margarita pizza crust was good, the sauce would have been better with only a tiny hint of garlic rather than too much.

V
Minneapolis
16 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of my favorite places! I go every time i am in Des Moines! Service is amazing and food is always incredible.

CS
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Such wonderful entrees! Loved all the wonderful varieties and uses of cheese

i
Los Angeles
4 reviews
Dined on September 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was fabulous! The best steak I’ve had in some time. Tim, our server was charming. It was a busy Sunday night and it was a lot of fun.

p
London
14 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Olivia was wonderful in bar area..... our server needed her personality but still ok. Dinner was great with excellent appetizers that were spaced perfectly apart. Bumped into the server we had on our last visit- I can’t believe he remembered me, but my wife said ponytails on men- you remember!!

WS
Miami
19 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

My wife and I are new to town and several times received recommendations to try Centro

G
Des Moines
5 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

Food was good the waiter was very snobbish

s
Mobile
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous food! Wonderful waitress. Beautiful restaurant.

d
Milwaukee
12 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food and service. Easy to locate and ample parking nearby.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything about our anniversary dinner was wonderful!

DW
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always the best food , service and best restaurant in town . No worries ever with Gluten. My wife has celiac disease and has never had a problem with gluten. thanks

JS
Des Moines
10 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had another great dining experience at Centro for brunch. I ordered the steak and eggs (scrambled with cheese and green onion) which came with Centro potatoes(yummy), and my guest had the chicken panini sandwich. Both were excellent. My guest also had the total basil soup which is always good. Service was typically professional, friendly, attentive without being overbearing. I always look forward to a meal at Centro, and afterwards, to the next time.

D
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of the true gems of the Des Moines food scene. Inspiration menu is always unique, interesting, and great tasting. A go to for both work clients and a dinner out with the people most special to me.

AB
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Great birthday celebration with wife and kids. Food and service were great as always.

CM
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We came to visit Des Moines from WI and were very happy with our meal and service at Centro. We went for breakfast on Sunday and had Timothy as a server. He made the experience especially delightful with his perky and charismatic personality. The food was also so delicious and decent sized portions. We would absolutely come again when we go back!

JC
Des Moines
2 reviews
Dined on August 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service, outstanding food. Highly recommend Centro for an enjoyable evening out!

SH
1 review
Dined on August 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We sat on the patio - seemed to be a lot of noisy vehicles zooming by. Nothing that the restaurant could have prevented. :)

NB
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were well taken care of by Timothy and did not have a long wait. Since we were celebrating we enjoyed a special dessert. The food was delicious and we are anxious to return!

DS
Washington DC
20 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Excellent restaurant, believe it or not wish the pasta portions were smaller. I was traveling on business and couldn't take the leftovers with me to my hotel. Been there for lunch and dinner very good food. A little noisy but not terrible. Also have a nice bar.

J
Des Moines
10 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Birthday celebration

CW
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Timothy is the world’s greatest waiter! Ask for him every time you go!! So helpful and genuinely kind!!

DH
Minneapolis
6 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We had dinner on the patio which was lovely. Walking through the dining room, we were happy with the choice to eat outside as the noise level was high. Good service, attentive. Shared a salad- the greens were not quite as fresh as we would have liked. Pasta dishes were very good.

GS
Atlanta
19 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

In town on business and decided to try this place out on a Sunday night.

Ambiance: overall it is nice. A little loud with the noise level coming from the bar
Service: Server was good. Two things I found lacking - he kept giving me an update on when my food would be out, such as mussels are about 4 minutes away, etc. While I am traveling on my own for business I don't need a countdown. Also, I finished my starter and my plate wasn't cleared before the entree came out. It wasn't that busy - this should have been handled.
Food: Ordered mussels as an appetizer and had scallops for my entree. Mussels were good, but very small. The sauce was different (not the standard white wine sauce, which I love) but I enjoyed them. A little pricey. My main course was scallops, which were large and tasted good but the dish was not the right temp. While the potatoes were hot the sprouts were warm and the scallops were luke warm. I want my scallops sizzling. I (reluctantly) sent it back and the plate was microwaved for a few seconds and came back out. Scallops were a little warmer but I did not want to risk sending them back a second time. While I know it is uncommon these days I would have preferred to have had the whole dish redone. Plus the scallops were highly recommended by the waiter, which had me anticipating something extraordinary. When they came out luke warm it really was a major disappointment. Plus the sauce with the scallops was a little off putting.

I know this is an Italian restaurant but if you are going to sell seafood know how to prepare and serve it right!

Again, this was a Sunday night...they had a couple of larger tables occupied and a decent crowd in the bar but the place was pretty empty. I would have expected better.

When back in town on business I will not come back

E
San Francisco
42 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

Second or third time in we’ll be back. Consistent quality nice place

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