Monello

4.5
1773 Reviews
$31 to $50
Italian
As Bencotto's brother located next door,
Monello lives up to its sibling's reputation as Best Italian restaurant in San Diego.
From the 800 LB of fresh pasta handcrafted every week, Monello displays up to 27 different recipes of pasta.
Mediterranean style seafood is served along with gourmet pizza.
Monello delivers Pasta & Risotto tossed in the Parmigiano cheese wheel tableside.
Unique Italian-style brunch is served on weekends.
Voted Best Happy Hour 2016, Monello's Milanese Aperitivo offers small plates on the house with drinks every night.
UN­ABLE TO FIND A TABLE? CHECK OUT OUR BROTHER RESTAURANT BENCOTTO NEXT DOOR

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
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
What 1773 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
4.6
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
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OT
vipOTkm
Phoenix
11 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great service! Our party enjoyed their dishes, mostly pastas. We loved the cheese wheel the most, and the chef preparing the cheese wheel pasta was fantastic. The terrace had nice ambiance.

MM
MicMac
Hawaii
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Little Italy was bustling with people friday evening. Monello checked us in right away and we were seated in the outdoor area setup. the wait staff was outstanding and conscientious of the fact that we had a time schedule to keep to see a show after dinner.

GA
GARYF
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall2food3service1ambience2

Service was very slow, food came out slow wrong order

TL
TammyL
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

The ravioli dish came out lukewarm. I’d like to have them hot especially on a cold evening. Otherwise the food was flavorful and service was great!

HR
HaileyR
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My favorite Italian restaurant in SD. It’s always amazing food, great portions, great service. No complaints ever!! Love this place

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Nice quiet dinner

Report
OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We sat outside so the noise level was not too bad. The food was fantastic, the cheese wheel pasta was delicious and fun to see, and there was a decent wine selection. Our waiter was busy but took care of everything and was nice. Definitely would go back again.

TN
TriciaN
New England
2 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was loud when we were there, but everything was amazing. Get the cheese wheel pasta.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I visit Monello at least once a month for date night, I am obsessed with the food and service and I refuse to try any other Italian restaurant in the area… THE BEST!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Phoenix
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2021
Overall2food2service4ambience2

Photo’s showed a ocean view to make it look like a rooftop restaurant. It is not rooftop and the food was below average for the price

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Anniversary.

P
vipPiquant
Phoenix
47 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The cheese wheel pasta is the most amazing meal! A must do at this great spot in Little Italy.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Service was awesome. Food and drinks was great. I’d definitely would come back here

m
mikeymapleice.
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 5, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience3

Really fantastic pasta. A little loud but it was Friday night.

JG
JaimeeG
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Server was amazing. But host was not friendly and looked upset to be there. Ignored us when we were at host stand.

Food was great.

LE
LauraE
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We made reservations via Open Table on a friends recommendation and sat outside. Only waited a couple of minutes to be seated. With the enclosures on three sides and heaters it was very comfortable )in the low 60’s) and much quieter than the indoor seating. Our server was wonderful- very attentive and helpful without being overbearing. We started with the burrata appetizer (very fresh and delicious). I had the cheese wheel pasta (linguini with sausage and mushrooms) and my husband had the penne with Ragu meat sauce. Both delightful. Add a bottle of Pinot Noir and it added up to a perfect anniversary dinner out. Highly recommend.

FS
FoodSnob
San Diego
15 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2021
Overall2food2service2ambience2

We were extremely disappointed in the gnocchi (over sauced and mushy), and the lasagna (bland).
Cocktails were nice but the bites which came with the cocktail s were less than desirable. The appetizers we ordered were tasty but those were not enough to entice us to return. Not worth the money we spent.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Diego
10 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall3food5service1ambience3

Reservations was booked with indoor request. Had to wait additionally 15 minutes to get the table. Got seated, waiter didn’t even came to greet us till about another 7-10 minutes after seating. The first thing he said when he came, are you guys ready to order without acknowledging if we need water as any restaurant waiter will do when he or she first come to the table.

I kindly asked bring us water and let’s order some drinks. That was out of the way. He then left. 10 minutes he comes, asked if we are ready. Ordered A starter and started to give him order for main entree. As we are ordering, he tell us “that is a lot of food. I don’t think there will be room on the table”. The table is for 4 plus people and we are 2. None of your business how much food we order. During the ordering, I asked for for bread as well.

Waiter goes about his business. Later starter arrived. While consuming it, we were done with our drinks and water. Waited to get his attention to ask for more water and a drink. During this wait, few waiters including him are passing back and forth. Not one asked if we need water as the bottle are empty along with the glasses. Lastly waiter came and asked for drink and water. On our first drink we asked for straws. The waiter said he will get it. 5 minutes passed. 10 minutes passed. No sign of straws.

Still consuming starter, one of the entree arrived and was placed on the table. We were expecting all entrees to arrive at the same time. But didn’t. So we finished our starter and the one entree that was served. Not once the waiter came to us “how is the appetizer?” “Are you guys doing okay?” 5 minutes after the starter and one of the entree that was finished, lastly our remaining entree shows up. That was placed on the table. With Italian food, the waiter will ask if we need Parmesan cheese due to the fact the dish type. Waiter didn’t even asked us that nor asked how the entree is. Waiters needs to be trained. Service + Quality Food=Revenue

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall1food1service1ambience2

Service and staff were not friendly, very stark and extreme lack of care. This has been a great restaurant several times in the past but the food fell short (even tho it came out extremely fast which was a plus) each dish just felt like it was subpar and our whole table felt the same. We left extremely disappointed and left fairly full plates and staff didn’t question it once, just asked if we wanted a box.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Atlanta
2 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a great time! The cheese wheel pasta was to die for and if we lived in SD we’d come back!! Also best espresso martini I’ve had in the city!

RA
RyanAnaheim
Orange County
20 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome experience our first time here! Great service and food. I tried their signature dish, the Cheese Wheel…. And glad I did! Made to order and the Chef himself brought me my plate!

GB
GavB
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall2food2service4ambience4

We had the cheesewheel pasta and fettuccine carbonara. Cheesewheel past was good but the carbonara was bland and the noodles didn't taste fresh. The vodka martini was $17 and used Tito's which is way overpriced. I had the blood and sand drink, took two sips and left it. Overall for the price, the food was below average and the drinks were worse.

Y
Yogi
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Quiet, excellent food, lots of it, great waiter.

A
Alexis
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was delicious and everyone was very welcoming. A nice place for family dinner.

l
longueur
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great time and great service would recommend to anyone

J
James
Central Coast
5 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I first went to Monello in December, 2019. I couldn’t wait to go back. Sadly, the pandemic hit. I thought about Monello for over a year and a half. We finally were able to travel to San Diego to experience this wonderful restaurant again. It did not disappoint. The pasta is so fresh and perfectly prepared. The cheese wheel special is amazing!! The house made vermouth is crazy delicious! can’t wait to go back again. Well worth the wait.

N
Nicole
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was amazing, our server was so attentive and personable, and it was a great experience. Will definitely be back

e
emmy
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food, wine and atmosphere was superb. Not cheap but 100% you get value for your money. Highly suggest the cheese wheel and specialty pasta but everything on the menu was decadent.

k
vipklili
San Diego
11 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2021
Overall4food3service3ambience5

Overall this place was good. I really liked the Caesar salad and my cheese wheel pasta. My husband did not enjoy the beef stuffed gnocchi, although the sauce was delicious. The the fried calzone, were just ok.

P
Punk
Central Coast
3 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

A great night at a fun restaurant. Would come again.

K
vipKathi
Orange County
12 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food at Monello is exceptional. You have to try the cheese wheel dishes…amazing. Service is sharp and helpful and the ambiance perfect! Highly recommend this place and I’m Italian!

AC
AnelC
1 review
Dined on October 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of my favorite in little italy! Delicious as always!!

DA
DAVIDF
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 19, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Carly our server was the best I have encountered in several years.

AT
AshaT
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

10/10 would recommend. It's rare to find a place where every dish was so good.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Everything we ate was amazing—the salads, mushroom appetizer, pizza, and the spaghetti with arrabbiata sauce which I could eat daily.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fantastic! Can’t even count how many times I have been here. Brought my mom and her best friends from out of town and they loved it!

m
mariecelo
1 review
Dined on October 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

I believe I put in comments that we were celebrating our wedding anniversary, & there was no mention of it from beginning to end. Not sure if this restaurant really does anything for it or if that’s extra, I have to say I was kind of disappointed.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Seattle
3 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2021
Overall2food1service5ambience4

We went here for my husbands birthday and the service and atmosphere were amazing. The food on the other hand was over priced for what they gave us. I ordered the veal and 90% of it was fat. They give a large portion but the quality is so poor I had to throw most of it away. Veal is suppose to be lean and flavorful. This was a plate of fat with some sauce thrown on top. The cheese wheel dish was ok but I’ve had better pasta from Vons. The caprese salad was unbalanced. It was one huge chunk of mozzarella with two tiny basil leaves and cherry tomatoes. Unbalanced and unimpressed…. Especially for $17. I could’ve made this meal for less and with much better skill and quality. If it wasn’t for the service and lighting this would have a one star review.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Experience was excellent as usual. Everything was perfect, service was great and the atmosphere outside was lovely. Love visiting this restaurant whenever I’m in town

C
Carmelmike
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2021
Overall2food3service3ambience4

Such a shame: Standards have fallen at Monello. The food tasted far more American than Italian this time, possibly reflecting the increase in tourism and falling standards of the changing customers, or a lackadaisical effort on the restaurant's part — or both. This was such a shining spot in the barely-reopening months of the past year+, but now we won't bother returning.

FAQs

You can order delivery directly from Monello using the Order Online button. Monello also offers delivery in partnership with Postmates. Monello also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (619) 501-0030.

Monello is rated 4.5 stars by 1773 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.

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