Il Dandy

4.3
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262 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Contemporary Italian
Il Dandy is home to California’s first Italian Michelin-rated chefs, father and son duo, Antonio and Luca Abbruzzino. Their eponymous restaurant Ristorante Abbruzzino, situated in the Calabrian region of Southern Italy, was awarded a Michelin star in 2013, the first restaurant in Calabria bestowed the honor.
Staying true to sustainable measures and guided by seasonality, the Chefs Antonio and Luca utilize the bounty of local farms to offer market-driven dishes presented in a contemporary manner showcasing the talents and mindful technique of the kitchen in an approachable setting. Guests of Il Dandy can expect a contemporary approach to cuisine rooted in Calabria, but with a nod to the history of decades past.


















What 262 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
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
78% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Hawaii
31 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

The food was mediocre. Our bread was obviously microwaved - hot on the outside, cold on the inside. The pork belly app was okay, but the tuna burrata was the best part of the meal. The steak and gnocchi were adequate. I did appreciate their mocktail list. Service was lacking, it just took forever to order and the server rarely checked on us.

KT
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great time. I'd been there before so I knew it wouldn't disappoint. My friends hadn't been there and LOVED it. They loved the food and the service.

CO
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 2

Food tasted bland for all courses, it was pretty disappointing. They also need to think about the music being played and get someone to curate their playlists

DG
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

The food was great although a bit overpriced. The waitstaff was pretentious and conceded how that makes for a great experience I don't know. I would try again but at a reduced price happy hour experience and see if they perform any better.

JP
Seattle
12 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful experience and got to meet the owner who guided us through the menu. The design was flawless and the server gave us a tour! We will certainly return for the food I loved the Monday 3 course special and the price point was very reasonable considering the quality of the food!

c
Palm Springs
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Our first visit...we'll be back!

This was our first visit and we took advantage of the Monday night 3 preset courses for $35 special (definitely a bargain!). The first course was slightly al dente chicken ravioli in a light sauce, which was excellent. A lamb loin followed over a smear of squash/pumpkin puree and a few leaves of seared greens. The dessert was a tasty citrus tart. The only reason for not giving a 5-star review for the food was that the lamb was a tad overcooked from the requested medium-rare (my fault for not mentioning this to the server). Our server made some excellent Italian wine suggestions. We chose a 2012 Barbera. It is definitely not a "sipping" wine (higher acid/astringent) but it worked beautifully with both courses! The rest of the menu had some innovative ingredient combinations that I look forward to trying in the future! Well done!

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My sister’s birthday

LS
Palm Springs
4 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

1. The bartender was pretentious and not helpful. She made no suggestions for alternative drinks on their bar menu. She acted as if she was completely bored when we asked about the digestives.
2. The wine steward didn't know a thing about wine.
3. We had to wait 20 minutes for our 8:30 reservation despite the table having been open and clean the entire time.
4. We were told there was no butter to put on the bread, this despite the fact the menu clearly had butter listed as a component of a dish. Ultimately the butter did show up.
5. Food was bland. Sounded interesting but flavors weren't there.

K
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 4

The staff were very friendly. The manager was very attentive and the owner sent over a pizza. However, our server never poured our wine or kept track of things.
The food was very disappointing. It was bland and came out at room temperature. We had 2 pizzas that were very good.
When I asked the manager about the food temperature she took a dish off our bill.
Unfortunately with all the excellent choices in restaurants I probably won’t go back.

AB
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was creative and divinely different. The pizza was light and flavorful, the fish of the day was different from the usual roast salmon, the the dessert.... sumptuous. The service was delightful as well. Don’t come expecting you average Italian restaurant. There is nothing average about this place. Sublime. Mouthwatering. Memorable! We’ll be back!!

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 4

We ordered apps and entrees and no one liked their food (pasta, fish of the day, tuna, etc). The service was good, drinks were good and place is beautiful. I would go back for a drink, but this is my 3rd time eating here and it will be my last time ordering food.
They could turn music up for better ambiance. It’s really too bad because it’s such a gorgeous restaurant. It has so much potential if they can get food and ambiance right.

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 4

Food was nothing special.

OT
Richmond
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Great wine, phenomenal steak, delicious fish. Reviews were correct. New, sleek, modern Italian restaurant with a nice trendy vibe. Slight lacking in acoustical barriers which caused restaurant to be slightly louder than normal (still manageable). Overall trendy, modern vibe, with great food and energetic environment. Would go again.

OT
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food great service great for celebrations!

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great quiet night with my husband. Pork belly appetizer was delicious and the drinks were amazing! Would definitely come back

S
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a great dining experience! We wanted to try all five vegan dishes on the menu and Josh, our waiter, suggested a chef's 6-course tasting menu which included dessert. Delicious! One of the best meals we have had in San Diego -- we will soon become regulars!

b
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wow! What an amazing food experience. The food on the plates come out not as expected; but when all those flavors hit your pallet what a thrill!
It’s pricey but worth every penny.

DM
Vancouver
13 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

First time there and definitely will return. Very interesting menu with many items I want to try. The service was great. The sun choke dish was very good, as was the pizza and calamari pasta. Only thing I can complain about is the music. Are there no quiet places anymore?

I have already recommended several friends to try IL Dandy

M
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food was quite good. One of the pasta dishes we ordered (ravioli with wild boar ragu) was phenomenal. Service was great.

d
San Diego
16 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is definitely a restaurant for foodies. Complicated clever presentations for discriminating palates beautifully. The four of us ate everything we ordered. Lots of servers very attentive. Cool vibe in Mr A’s building.

M
San Diego
9 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place was amazing. Unfortunately I wrote a long review that my computer ate. I still want to rave, but consider this a short version.

The food is Italian with a focus on local ingredients (from San Diego/SoCal) and prepared in the style of Calabria (the "toe" of the "boot" of Italy). The food has an incredible depth and density of flavors, but at the same is relatively light on the palate. My wife and I shared several appetizers, a salad, and entree, and a dessert. The appetizers included the sunchokes (amazing, even if you, like my wife, don't like licorice--it's not really noticeable), the pork belly, and the shrimp carpaccio. The Romagnola salad was full of so many ingredients it could have been overkill but somehow it all worked (I'd have this for lunch with a piece of protein). The gnocchi with ragu was amazing. Great texture on the gnocchi, and the ragu was rich but light (I know, it makes no sense--try it!) at the same time. We finished with tiramisu and it was incredible. Not what I would call traditional, it was almost deconstructed, but the flavors were amazing and it wasn't too sweet. Highly recommended and we can't wait to go back!

AL
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

Hazards of a price fixe menu is you can either take it or order a la carte. Since my friend and I intentionally came in for this, I ordered it knowing - Swordfish is not my favorite fish. 3 course meal.
First course - baked chicken with parmesan foam and croutons. The portions was perfect to prepare you for the next course.
Second course - swordfish fusilli - the sauce was light, the fussili fresh but Swordish is a strong fish and can overwhelm other flavors. Not excited about it but the fussili and veggies were tasty and fine.
Third course - I am not good at repeating verbatim on what it was but it seemed like a tartlet with nice fillng with chantilly cream on the side on top of crunch and candied hazelnuts. Perfect ending.
Overall, I would call first if you do decide you want to do their price fixe menu for $35 only available at this time on Mondays (started Sep 16). I would go back for sure to try other items in the menu (pork belly).

OT
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

2nd visit, appetizers this visit were sub-par. Waitress was not phenomenal. For a $250 meal for 2, I’m not sure it was as stellar as our first visit. Fun restaurant, but feels a little snooty without the delivery of truly exceptional food and service. I was disappointed.

GV
1 review
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

You walk into this place and are immediately stunned by its beautiful architecture and modern, minimalistic decor. Unfortunately, that is the best aspect of Il Dandy. Though there are a few options for us vegans, the prices are astounding and the service aloof. I'd stick with Cucina Urbana.

OT
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

The food ranged from good to amazing. The gnocchi with wild boar was one of the best things I’ve tasted in a while, and the octopus salad was a close runner up. The dishes are on the small side and easy to share, but I like that because it means we got to add another dish to try. The place itself is loud and trying really hard to be trendy, but ends up being bit pretentious. I probably won’t rush back, unless I start thinking about the gnocchi. Then I’ll go back just for that.

MA
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Super trendy place located in Bankers Hill where parking is not super difficult. This place has the best pasta dishes in SD!

JN
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 2

In my opinion, pretentious menu with high prices to match. helicopter wait service, loud hard surface environment - I cannot recommend.

E
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great Monday night date night here. The ambience, design, food and wine list were exceptional. Not to be missed: the Panna cotta with strawberries! Can’t wait to come back.

JW
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 15, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 3

Dishes lack flavor. I tried four and was disappointed in all four.

KW
Phoenix
2 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Ill Dandy offers sensory overload in the best of ways.

OT
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Marvelous - the service was outstanding, the food was superb. Looking forward to our next visit!

J
Orange County
22 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

3 out of the 4 dishes we had were great. Unfortunately we had to send one back. The appearance of the restaurant is cute and trendy but it’s extremely warm in the summer/fall months. We most likely will not visit again.

M
San Diego
38 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Some great dishes, but not all. A bit over done on flavor profile. Very lemony sauce on beef ravioli did not meld well. Gnocchi was excellent, bit super rich and heavy.

JL
Los Angeles
6 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 2

I was really looking forward to dining here with my family and visiting relatives. Unfortunately it did not live up to the hype. We brought our own wine and it took a really long time to get our server to bring wine glasses and open our bottles. The food was good but not exceptional. It was super warm in the restaurant and we had to step out to cool off. The vibe reminded us of a hotel lobby restaurant. I doubt we will return.

j
Denver
11 reviews
Dined on September 13, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

My husband and I were really looking forward to this experience but were definitely disappointed. The space was amazing and very well designed except we were stuck behind a wall and didn’t get the best view of the restaurant. It was also very hot since the patio doors were open which made it uncomfortable. We got the tasting menu and expected to be blown away but the flavors were bland. Two of the courses had the exact same ingredients. The two courses that we liked the best were the beef cheek tortellini and the swordfish. The value was not worth the price and we unfortunately won’t be returning.

OT
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on September 12, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Cesar was knowledgable about the courses so that was the positive. I had called almost a month prior to book a table for important clients coming into town. The time lapse between courses was off-putting when the restaurant wasn’t really full and half of the six course pre-fixe menu were ok but lacking in taste. I wouldn’t go back due to the slow kitchen and pretty disappointing food.

DB
1 review
Dined on September 10, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Everything including the desserts was too salty. Noisy.

OT
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on September 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Took my husband for his birthday dinner and he was pleased. Food was delicious. Chris gave us a 5-star treatment. Thank u!

JA
Palm Springs
3 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

The restaurant is beautiful. Service was friendly and helpful. Prices were high and the menu could use a few more options. The food portions were on the small side.
The gnocchi was a great dish though.

OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Bday celebration

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