Monello

4.6
1663 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

Support Monello during COVID-19

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 1663 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.5
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
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i
vipimanole
Miami
8 reviews
Dined a day ago
Overall4food5service3ambience4

The pasta is excellent. The service was really bad. The manager was great and on his game but the service left a great deal to be desired. The guy was clearly wanting to end his shift and we were a bother to him.

K
Kaypee
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall1food1service3ambience2

Veil was way over cooked. We were upset about the food but just gave it away to the homeless. Not coming back. Lobster bisque was amazing though!

B
Blue
Sacramento
3 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience3

The food was good. The service was nice but a little lacking. Our main dishes took a long time to come out of the kitchen and once they arrived at the table we were left with no forks for eating as they had been cleared after the salad course and not yet relaxed. So we have to sit for a few minutes waiting to eat out dinner.

NK
NicoleK
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Everything we ordered was fantastic but especially wonderful was the Cheese Wheel pasta, it is a MUST.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Diego
11 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall2food2service2ambience3

My wife and I decided to dine here after not having been in a couple years. We were unfortunately reminded why we hadn’t rushed back. Feels overpriced for the quality of the food. Too many bette Italian restaurants in San Diego to return here.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
10 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall2food3service3ambience2

I am Italian, born in Milan 50 years ago and lived lost of my life there.
We do not have good street in Milan

AG
AndyG
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on July 29, 2021
Overall3food3service2ambience4

Food overall was good. The ravioli di gamberi and spaghetti neri con polipo were tasty. The monello sauce however was overpowered by bacon flavor. The Negroni was also excellent.

Ambience outside was pretty nice for being in the street. Service was friendly but inattentive. We had to flag down our server multiple times for simple things like water, napkins, and silverware (served appetizers without the latter).

B
Brian
San Diego
9 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

It was a bit too loud for casual conversation at put table. But the cheese wheel.padta special was out of this world!

MY
MelanieY
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2021
Overall4food3service4ambience4

Great service and ample outdoor seating. The menu offers customizable past as well as specialties. I ordered the signature cheese pasta which is prepared then mixed into an aged parm round. It made for good entertainment but there were hardly any shavings of the cheese added. The pasta included shrimp and pulpit (octopus) that was mushy and not so good flavor.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Good is the enemy of great. That 2% that separates Monello from greatness is very important. Solid experience in general at the end of the day.

R
Renee
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience2

Been here a few times. First time was great, second time was not. The quality and care put into the food is not consistent. Big bummer!

JC
vipJayCeeEm
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Love this Little Italy staple. The food never disappoints! Great place in a nice location.

RN
ReshmaN
1 review
Dined on July 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The most decadent pasta you will ever have. We had the best dinner of our stay here

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on July 24, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Great food and great experience

JM
JenniferM
Phoenix
1 review
Dined on July 22, 2021
Overall3food4service2ambience3

Service felt very odd and disjointed. Pasta was great though.

RN
vipRanaN
Dallas
4 reviews
Dined on July 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Vacation dinner.

Report
MS
MaraS
San Diego
1 review
Dined on July 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was delicious. Staff super friendly. Highly recommend!

IB
IBDiner
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

We had an early dinner which was during aperitivo. We dined in the outdoor area. It was nicely shaded and felt intimate. We had drinks and some of the complementary aperitivo items. For our meal, we got the cheese wheel pasta and some butternut squash gnocchi to share. Everything was fresh and delicious. We couldn't finish. The staff were all very courteous and attentive to the diners' needs. It was a very pleasant dining experience overall.

P
vipPiquant
Phoenix
45 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Another Little Italy gem. We shared the cheese wheel pasta and it was delicious. Grilled octopus was perfectly
prepared and what a huge portion they provided. Wine list is a little abbreviated but the Spellbound Napa Chardonnay was a hit.
Covered outside seating is plentiful and well spaced.

LH
LoveH
1 review
Dined on July 18, 2021
Overall3food5service1ambience3

Food was incredible but our service was incredibly slow. We felt we got overlooked and had long periods of waiting in between to order entrees, get refills, desserts and the bill. Bummed because it was a bday luncheon that could’ve been much more enjoyable if the service was better.

UF
UpscaleFoodie
San Antonio
1 review
Dined on July 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and ambiance

Y
Yehwhatevr
Orange County
13 reviews
Dined on July 17, 2021
Overall4food3service5ambience5

The service and ambiance at this restaurant is outstanding! The employees were very attentive and friendly, the service was quick and the food was hot! I did feel it was a bit overpriced for what you get though. Our dinner was $71 (including tip) for a very small bowl of pasta and a pizza. My daughter had the cheese-wheel pasta which was delicious (but again, overpriced) It was a cool experience and could not have been any fresher (they bring out a bowl of piping hot pasta from the back and swirl it around in a 60lb wheel of cheese, which melts and coats the pasta) My daughter is very petite and usually never finishes her full meal, especially pasta, but the entire bowl was gone before I was even on my 2nd piece of pizza. It was delicious, not taking away from that, but the serving size was child like (she's 28 btw) My pizza was delicious (minus the chicken that I added to it)

CH
vipCH23
San Diego
19 reviews
Dined on July 17, 2021
Overall3food5service2ambience4

Food was on point as always. Service was definitely lacking and in a time when people are excited to be out and spending money I would expect better. The bar needs MAJOR improvement. Selection on wine is terrible. Cocktails the last 3 visits have been terrible. Love this place and the food, just need to make some adjustments and maybe some training.

FT
vipFrankT
Austin
9 reviews
Dined on July 16, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Food was really good. Service was good. Recommend this place

AD
AllieD
1 review
Dined on July 15, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Super awesome staff and food was great! Portions are huge and shareable.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great leadership at this restaurant. We’re locals and have always loved all of our experiences here.

MS
MichaelS
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on July 15, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Ambiance excellent both in and outdoors. Individual pizza to thick for a single serving.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on July 15, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

It was good to be back. I love the outdoor area in front. The food was great as usual. The salami n cheese plate was impressive!
Thank you!

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
1 review
Dined on July 14, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience2

The reason I gave a low score for ambiance was that we were seated outside, would have been higher rating except we had a 9:00 reservation, half way through our meal the staff began breaking down all of the tables around us and stacking chairs up. It wasn’t even 9:30. We also had barely begin to eat our appetizers when our meals came. I’m guessing everyone was ready to get patrons out ASAP. If you don’t want later patrons please don’t offer a 9:00 reservation time. I was so disappointed

JG
JanelleG
1 review
Dined on July 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was my first experience in little Italy and Monello really knocked it out of the park! The food and atmosphere was amazing! Staff was friendly and always available. 10/10 recommend!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on July 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food & great service

b
vipbbfergu
Palm Springs
34 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2021
Overall2food2service2ambience3

Booked this restaurant based on google reviews. Extremely disappointing. Overcooked pasta. Nothing memorable. Roadhouse quality. Slow service and no communication until the check arrived.
Would not recommend.

S
Sabrina
Orange County
3 reviews
Dined on July 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Definitely a place you can take a date, amazing pizzas and pastas that really feel unique.

LD
vipLeslieD
San Diego
35 reviews
Dined on July 9, 2021
Overall4food3service5ambience3

We loved the vibe and returned for that and the food. Our waiter was outstanding! However, we were recommended, and ordered, the preferred dishes and they were bland. We had the shrimp spaghetti, the salmon, the Monello sauce on the referred pasta, the cheese wheel daily pasta, and none of them really “wowed” us. We recall more of a “wow” experience in times past. This restaurant has the ability to pack a culinary punch but fell a little short at this time.

MJ
vipMJF3
San Diego
106 reviews
Dined on July 9, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Excellent food as always; however, our pizza came out about 4 minutes after the appetizer, which was very large, so by the time we got to the pizza it was cold. So very good food and a pleasant server, but a major problem with pacing of the meal this time.

CS
ChristinS
Austin
1 review
Dined on July 8, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food and service are top notch. Pasta portions are shareable.

SF
SamanthaF
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on July 7, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

The fried calamari zucchini was a bit too soaked in oil, and the bead was pretty plain for not being complementary. Everything else was delicious!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on July 6, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Fantastic food

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
2 reviews
Dined on July 4, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

pasta wheel amatriciana was ok. it wasn’t as warm and a little dry when it got to me even after the pasta wheel mix. everything else was excellent tho! buratta, pizza, lobster bisque, ceasar salad and calamari was delicious! service took a little long but understandably, it was a busy night.

JZ
vipJakeZ
Las Vegas
40 reviews
Dined on July 4, 2021
Overall2food2service4ambience3

I have been to this restaurant many times. I have to say, this is probably the worst visit I’ve had. The food didn’t really taste like much, we sent one dish back (which as a former restaurant professional, I never do), and it was just a let down. I did make a comment to my girlfriend that the chef seem to spend more time standing outside in the patio and the dining room, then he was in the kitchen. The server was apologetic, as was the manager. But it doesn’t really make up for a poor experience. Not sure if I will go back to this or their sister restaurant next-door.

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 4.6 stars by 1663 OpenTable diners.

Monello does offer gift cards which you can purchase here https://monello-bencotto.instagift.com/.

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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