Il Fornaio - Irvine

4.5
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2700 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Step inside Il Fornaio and take a culinary journey through Italy. Early mornings bring rustic, crisp crusted bread hot from the oven accompanied by the scent of fresh brewed espresso. During lunch and dinner hours, pastas and flavorful sauces simmer while meats and vegetables roast over hot coals. Bottles of wine from small, regional wineries are uncorked to complement the dishes, which have been crafted in the custom of Italy's chefs, bakers and homemakers. Il Fornaio means "the Baker" in Italian. This award-winning restaurant offers an authentic and unique Italian dining experience.

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What 2700 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
89% of people would recommend it to a friend
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TA
Orange County
1 review
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, great service. Our server recommended a great wine. Thank you.

MW
Orange County
14 reviews
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

The food was particularly delicious, especially the swordfish and the soup, and we always enjoy things a touch more when Arturo is our server.

PM
1 review
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience5

Ordered a sea food pasta. It was a little grainy. The bread pudding was dry and charred in some places. We spoke to the Manager the next day after we had the leftover and he was very gracious and offered a gift card.

JJ
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Food was very good, service was not as good as usual although I am not usually there on Saturday noght

J
Orange County
32 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience3

Server on the patio was frequently absent even though there were only 3 tables seated.

VT
New England
136 reviews
Dined on March 4, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

What a nice spot to find via Open Table. Il Fornaio, I am guessing, does a ton of business lunches since it's set amidst many office buildings, and the evenings are actually their slower time. This is good for us a diners as the excellent staff took good care of us, and the the kitchen was efficient with serving the various courses.
The food was quite good -- my sea bass was incredibly moist and definitely NOT counterfeit. My colleague had a swordfish loin dish that was a special, which was really really good; I tried a little and as good as my sea bass was, I had a bit of entree envy. The only gripe was that the calamari starter was a bit typical, if you will, though perfectly cooked. I highly recommend Il Fornaio for both service and food. A great find.

VP
Hawaii
3 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Still cant find a Better Italian Restaurant in SoCal ,after 15 years of Searching . .
Pricey but All good, from bread to Dessert !

HF
1 review
Dined on February 29, 2020
Overall2food3service2ambience2

We have been going here for over 20 years. Screaming waiters with noisy carts rushing by, spilled a whole drink down my husband, food was mediocre, completely out of the advertised gluten free option that we love, manager and waiter cleaned spill on floor with tags from when spilled drink on my husband and then I saw them immediately handling plates at the kitchen counter we were sat by (even though when I made the reservation asked for different area). Super disappointed

OT
1 review
Dined on February 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Terrific experience. Always a wonderful meal. I have never had a bad meal and the restaurant makes you feel special small the time.

U
San Diego
1 review
Dined on February 27, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience5

I ordered a dish with chicken and veggies and mashed potatoes. I substituted the mash potatoes for spaghetti. The veggies and spaghetti had too much olive oil. I really wanted traditional spaghetti but the waiter told me he can bring it with olive oil and garlic. It was okay. The desserts were good.

d
Los Angeles
20 reviews
Dined on February 26, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Very nice Italian restaurant. Not elegant but we received great service, good food, great charcuterie appie, and good dessert. We would definitely go again!

DW
Orange County
3 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Haven't been to Il Fornaio in a while as my office is no longer close. It is still one of my favorites and I always eat way too much bread and pasta! Am fasting for a couple of days.

KA
Orange County
2 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I got the special with linguine and fish. Delicious! Our waitress was very good and helpful. We enjoyed our evening.

SA
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on February 21, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

I haven’t been in a few years due to this not being a local restaurant to where I live. Met up with some work colleagues for lunch and all was what I remembered from before........ all good and would return again

H
San Francisco
32 reviews
Dined on February 19, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Nice location- very friendly service and great food.

r
Orange County
5 reviews
Dined on February 19, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and ambiance, service too.

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience1

I enjoyed my experience very much! The food was delicious, and the staff was prompt. I took my wife for a late valentines dinner and she didn’t want to leave. The hostess was also very polite, wish the portions were bigger but i guess it’s ok so I don’t get fatter. Thank you!! I Dessert was amazing! The bread pudding was delicious

OT
Tucson
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Service was fantastic. Great food as well

RS
Orange County
26 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall3food3service2ambience3

We were there in a busy Saturday night and the service was not great. We were seated right away but the waiter was definitely trying to rush us. He hovered over our table as soon as we got our menus and wanted us to order right away. Once our food came, he disappeared and we had to flag someone down for a drink refill. The food was bland at best. We hadn’t been here in a while and we won’t be back. There are much better Italian restaurants in the area with good food and that actually make you feel welcome dining there. We will not be coming back.

LM
Orange County
2 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

This is a nice restaurant for a business lunch or dinner. Our server was great and very attentive. I felt the food was good but nothing exciting. Menu did have something for everyone. I would come back again but I would try a few other restaurants in the area before I came back.

DB
Adelaide / SA
7 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Wow! Long story short my wife and I didn’t get any food 1 1/2 hours from the time of our reservation. Our reservation was at 8:15PM on Valentines Day, 90 minutes later, a server who was not our original server approached us and said they lost our ticket/order and asked if we wanted to re-order. I recently turned 50 years old, by far the worst experience of my life at a restaurant and that includes fast food chains. Unbelievable!

OT
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a wonderful and relaxing Valentine/Birthday dinner. The service was excellent, the food delicious.

Y
Orange County
21 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall2food4service1ambience3

We usually love going to Il Fornaio as a family on special occasions. Although the food was very good, as always, and the special Valentines’ chocolate flourless cake was pretty tasty, the evening went pretty bad because of the very poor service. The server was extremely inattentive... much so that we got the main entrees way BEFORE we got our water and beverages... (what???) Honestly, it would take too long to list everything that went wrong today with the service.... Despite my many years as a patron of Il Fornaio, I’m truly considering to never go back...

OT
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food2service1ambience5

Frankly underwhelmed by the taste of the dishes, but the inattentive service sunk the ship. Highlight of the meal was the delicious appetizers...and anticipation of a wonderful main course that sadly didn't play out. Ambiance was nice, but there's no reason to return.

JB
Orange County
4 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Excellent service, very good food. A little noisy but overall very enjoyable.

OT
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

First time dining here and we really enjoyed it. The food and the service (Geraldo) were amazing!!! Tables were positioned a bit too close for my liking and voices carried from all the tables surrounding us.

s
Orange County
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had dinner for Valentine’s Day and had a wonderful dinner! The service was excellent as well as the wine and food. Thanks for a beautiful evening ❤️ and we will definitely be returning.

OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our favorite place to go for celebrating with our family

BV
Orange County
6 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Food was excellent. Waiter needed to pay closer attention. They brought out our entree while we were in the middle of salads. So the entree had to wait and be placed under heat lamps.

OD
Orange County
22 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great place for a business lunch. Lively atmosphere and the food and service were excellent.

BB
Orange County
43 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Outstanding meal to celebrate friend's 70th BD in the Chef's Table. As always, EVERYONE was most satisfied with the service, food, ambiance and evening. Thank you Il Fornaio once again!

KF
Portland
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall1food4service1ambience3

We've been here before and our experience was great the first time. However, we went recently over the weekend with a reservation (and it wasn't very busy) and our experience was horrible.

First, we got seated near the door which kept opening and closing and with it being a very cold night it was kind of inconsiderate.

We asked for water twice and this was after they already took our order. When the waiter was taking our order he was not inviting, nor did he even try to ask what were celebrating or try to make any menu recommendations. It was extremely transactional.

The food came out fast however, and one of two orders was wrong. I look at the server saying 'I didn't order that' and they took it back, he didn't even apologize. We sat there sharing my boyfriend's food since it took over 15 min for us to get my food and by the time my food came out we already finished eating his meal. If we were to wait for my food to come out, his food would have just gotten cold. The right thing to do would be to just take all the food back, and bring both meals out at the same time so we could enjoy it together!

I finally got my food and since we had to share this meal again, we needed plates. We had to ASK for our table to be cleared and for some extra plates when the table was already so small.

The food was good but the service was actually awful. Not once did the server come back to ask us how everything was. The server apologized but it seemed so unapologetic. We didn't even think the service deserved any form of tip.

Then when we were all finished the server handed us vouchers to come back for free appetizers/soups. I sat there in shock thinking that they would want us to come back and spend MORE money for bad service, plus it only lasted until the end of the month? Really?

This experience has been one of my worst dining experiences yet and sadly we don't go out and get dressed up often so this was extremely disappointing.

NT
Orange County
3 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wish other restaurants would STAFF like Il Fornaio, and every person in the establishment is caring and informed!!

L
Orange County
2 reviews