Giardino Neighborhood Cucina

4.4
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167 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Located in the middle of Lemon Grove’s charming downtown area, Giardino is a welcoming and casual Italian inspired cucina where the neighborhood gathers for fresh and flavorful classic dishes found throughout Italy.

Giardino offers an Italian-inspired menu of seasonally-driven dishes that use timeless Italian techniques and fresh ingredients. Guests will find items such as fresh seafood, pastas, pizzas and salads, as well as a variety of elements made in-house.
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Specials

Cheese Wheel Pasta Mondays

Rotating pastas served table side from a giant parmesan cheese wheel. Every Monday night.

Terms and Conditions:

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: August 1, 2019

Ends: August 2, 2118

Availability: Mon 4:00PM-9:00PM

Happy Hour

Drinks from $3, and bites from $5 every Monday-Friday from 2-5pm in the bar or lounge.

Terms and Conditions:

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: August 1, 2019

Ends: August 2, 2118

Availability: Mon-Fri 2:00PM-5:00PM

Pizza Tuesdays

Every Tuesday night, get any pizza from the menu plus a carafe of house wine or sangria for only $19.

Terms and Conditions:

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: August 1, 2019

Ends: August 2, 2118

Availability: Tue 4:00PM-9:00PM

Half Off Wine Wednesdays

Every Wednesday, get half off select bottles of wine all day.

Terms and Conditions:

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: August 1, 2019

Ends: August 2, 2118

Availability: Wed 12:00PM-9:00PM

Valentine's Day Special Menus & More

Join us for a Valentine's Weekend. We'll be offering an a la carte menu full of Giardino favorites, plus a special prix fixe menu for two for $90/couple. Feb. 13-16

Friday, February 14, 2020

What 167 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
4.4
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I've been coming here for about 3 months now. The food and drinks are always delicious. Great staff and atmosphere. I'll definitely be back.

PV
San Diego
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2020
Overall2food4service3ambience3

We went there for New Year’s brunch! The restaurant atmosphere was good, and brunch was self serve buffet! The food quality was fair too! However the selection of food for the price of buffet was too expensive! For $35 buffet per person, we expected a more variety of food (especially more vegetarian options, given the restaurant name was popping up online by searching vegetarian), but we got the selection of only 5 food in the buffet! No drinks (e.g. coffee, juice, etc) were included in the price! For the same price you can get much better value and food variety elsewhere. Can’t comment about their regular menu, but wouldn’t recommend their buffets!

D
San Diego
64 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

They accommodated me during brunch when I discovered that my dietary needs didn't match what was offered on the brunch buffet. Very helpful and friendly.

OT
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The staff is friendly and helpful. The menu offers something for everyone and the food is delicious!

KD
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We have dined here several times and everytime it has been amazing !! The food is excellent, lots of good pastas and seafood. NYE I had the fillet de gorgonzola and my husband had the live maine lobster and they both were fantastic and a great value. The owner Karina has been there every time I have dined and she is always greeting people and is truly a hard working owner.

OT
Houston
42 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Good place for vegetarians, gluten free and carnivores! We were a group of 10 with lots of dietary restrictions and they accommodated them all!!

r
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience5

room was packed. Perhaps staff was overwhelmed. They did their best to accommodate
everyone.

JH
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2019
Overall3food2service3ambience2

We had company and went to Giardino's Christmas Brunch. I'd never been there, but with all the positive reviews it seemed like a winner. The hostess and wait staff were nice, checking in regularly to see if we needed anything. The restaurant is open ended, with nothing to ameliorate sound levels. The food served at the steam tables was not good. Several pasta dishes were full of oil and tasted old. There was a tray of chicken in a lemon caper sauce, which was well past it's time. The waffles and pancakes were overdone and dark brown.

DM
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The lamb was wonderful, and should be on the daily menu. Perfect service and ambiance … when they get the cork ceiling finished, the noise level will probably subside... :) ….when the food's this good, who's listening anyway?!!!

S
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on December 20, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience3

We enjoyed the food. The restaurant is way too noisy. I won't return until I can sit outside!

GW
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 13, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Excellent food. Very attentive waitress.

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 9, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great little place, we come here often

EB
San Diego
11 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Birthday dinner for my SIL and girls night out. EXCELLENT. so glad we found this gem near our homes

d
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

What a gem in my area! Food is fantastic, service good too. Pasta is Aldente!

R
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Friendly service and delicious pastas.

LL
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Overall great experience. The Food was excellent and so was the service.
Alcohol was way over priced in my opinion.

KC
1 review
Dined on October 11, 2019
Overall2food1service3ambience2

The adult beverages were awful. Risotto was hard and close to being raw! My husband had the Chicken fettuccine, and the chicken was dry and there was no flavor to the whole dish, very bland. My friend ordered spaghetti and meatballs. He liked the meatballs but the spaghetti was very bland. I will not return to this restaurant nor will I recommend it to anyone!

K
San Diego
21 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a great time! Food was delicious and service was great. Our waitress recommended arugula and burrata salad, and it tasted amazing! I tried pasta carbonara and it blew my mind. We were so full and didn’t try the dessert, but they told us they make homemade tiramisu and cannolis, so we are going to be back for sure!

OM
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I had an amazing dinner at Giardino! Chilean sea bass and steak siciliano was amazing paired with great Italian wines! Also the design of the restaurant is amazing! Highly recommend this place!

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I' s favorite date night place. The ambiance is great, the food even better, and always have good service. The staff is so personable and attentive. We will keep coming back, we love this place.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Thank you for an amazing time, the food was fantastic just like in Italy! Full bar is a great new addition and we loved your new cocktails :-) We will definitely come back again! Thank you Shanon and Karina for taking care of us!

KH
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Made reservations for 7:15pm. Didn't get seated until 7:40. We stayed because they were busy and we know that restaurant week can be crazy. We sat down and 15 minutes go by without drink orders. Finally when our waitress arrives she is flustered and asks us for drinks. When I tell her we have looked at the menu and are ready to order she seemed annoyed. We ordered the rice balls for app and the bruschetta. The rice balls came out cold. 1 hour after we were seated we received our food. The salmon was very fishy, no other flavor I couldn't finish it. My friend actually loved the ravioli. The desert was nothing special, but took another 30 minutes to arrive. The dinner in its entirety took 2 hours. No comp drinks, no one to make sure our glasses were filled. (we had to ask someone for another drink when the glass had been empty for 20 minutes). We will never come here again!

CM
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall1food2service1ambience1

It was restaurant week. Service was very slow, the servers seemed overwhelmed, it was busy but the restaurant was not full. The food was even slower. Our appetizers came out separately, about an hour after we arrived. Our meals eventually came out twice. The food was just average. It was very noisy in the restaurant. It took about 2 hours from start to finish, which could have been relaxing if the experience was good.

j
San Diego
29 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Cute place, nice people, great food and good prices.

OT
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful for restaurant week. Carbonara was slap your mama good.

PF
Las Vegas
7 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Pleasantly surprised at the lovely decor. Responded to a Facebook ad which I usually don’t do - however, I saw that several of my local friends liked this restaurant. They have a fairly small wine list but it is sufficient. My husband ordered pear salad And rigatoni al forno and I had fettuccine with mushrooms and scallops with a beet and spinach salad. We finished with cappuccino and limoncellos. Service was wonderful and the food is excellent. We will be back!

LQ
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love this place, have turned on several friends to it. I’m particularly fond of the red blend wine!!

OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Celebrated my bday here and it was wonderful!

HR
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 20, 2019
Overall4food5service2ambience5

The food is always very good here. The service is erratic. Went on a Tuesday night at 6:45 and had a reservation. There were only 4 or five other groups and we waited at least 15 minutes for water and menus. They apologized saying the evening staff was delayed due to traffic and personnel issues. OK I get that but then after ordering we waited another 20+ minutes for our appetizer and another 15 minutes plus for our entrees. The glass of wine I ordered had to be sent back as it was obviously very old. Our waitress did bring out a fresh bottle and opened and poured it at the table, 100 % better. Had to ask for more water twice also. In the end they comped the calamari appetizer and also gave use a generous piece of termesui to go as it was my wife’s birthday. So food 4.5 stars. Service 2-4 stars, four for the second half of the meal. I did tip our waitress well as she tried to make our experience right in the end. I do recommend, however be aware of the service issues as this has happened to us in the past as well.

JF
San Diego
11 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great family restaurant.

OT
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fav restaurant in East County! Love the food and the staff! Ambiance is great!!

MG
San Diego
1 review
Dined on July 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food at a good value close to home. We especially enjoyed the pizzas and the desserts.

LF
San Diego
14 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was wonderful. I asked if it would be possible to get the calamari appetizer sauteed, rather than breaded and fried, and they did so. Not only was it amazing that night, but it even tasted great the next day, reheated-tender, not chewy. Obviously, very fresh product!

It was my friend's first time there and she literally 'cleaned her plate'-all three of them!

G
1 review
Dined on June 30, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Overall experience was great . My friend and I had a great time and we both had a delicious meal with perfect serving size for lunch again the next day. Love having water served at our table in the cute glass bottles. It would be great though if the water wasn't tap water. Yuck!!!! We had a great server who was very attentive and patient while we asked questions about your wonderful menu. I did order from your wine drink menu and ended up with moldy lime in my drink. It would have been a good idea to offer a complimentary drink 2 makeup for the oversight especially after I had already taken one sip before I notice the moldy lime. Inspite of the reccomedation being made, we do love this place and will be back again and again.

LF
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Giardino's is the gem of Lemon Grove. Tucked away unassumingly at the end of the Broadway strip malls, when you enter it feels like you're transported to Italy, or at the very least, Little Italy downtown! We were lucky to go just as they launched a new menu, although our old favorites were there as well. The app sampler was delicious and beautifully presented, the best item was the crab stuffed mushrooms - to die for! My standbye dish, the carbonara was fabulous and creamy as ever and the new pizza items are worth a try. Service is lovely and my only complaint is the acoustics make it a bit loud, but not so much as to not hear your dining companions. Great place for a date night, and you can even follow it up with a trip a few doors down to the new brewery. Hope more people come to enjoy this fab little restaurant and it encourages more nice places to move into Lemon Grove. It's nice to not have to drive out of town to find a decent meal!

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Such a great place for a really good meal!

FF
San Diego
10 reviews
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A real jewel for Lemon Grove, that generally lacks for good eating places. Run by a husband and wife who clearly love food and customer care, it feels like a really personal, neighborly experience. The decor is outstanding, nice atmosphere and great place to take out of town visitors.

OT
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on June 5, 2019
Overall4food3service4ambience3

Food was a bit on the bland side, which was unusual.
The cannolis were great!!

OT
1 review
Dined on June 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I would recommend, food very tasty

MM
1 review
Dined on June 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our Family loves Giardino's!! Best Italian food in San Diego!