PepeNero Ristorantino Italiano / Ballaro Wine Lounge

4.8
574 Reviews
$31 to $50
Italian
Savor a taste of Italy at PepeNero, a chef owned restaurant with a classy, upscale and stylish atmosphere featuring seasonal changing menus using ingredients at their best, sourced from local farms or Italian artisan producers. Our menus are a combination of simple modern Italian and traditional regional recipes.

We’re hoping you’re expecting, the restaurant experience is not quite as it used to be. We’re doing our best to follow all guidelines and stick to all requirements in safety and cleanliness. You may not like them, we certainly don’t. But this is a different time, and currently these are the things we must do.
Overdrive sanitation procedures; limiting seating capacity to 6' apart with MAXIMUM 4 GUESTS PER PARTY; All reservations are spaced 10 minutes apart. Masks on while standing.
We are calling all reservations, so please make sure the phone nr is correct. Res. will be cancelled if we can not confirm it.
Patio seating: phone reservation only -max 24 hours advance.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
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 574 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.9
food
4.9
service
4.8
ambience
4.6
value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
Sort by
Filters
AS
vipAmyS
New York Area
43 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The best meal we have eaten in a very long time!!!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2020
Overall2food4service5ambience4

The dining experience was great. When I got home I realized I significantly over payed. I followed up the next day and spoke with someone and went over the details.
A week later no follow up or refund so I called again and left a voicemail. Still no response or refund after 9 days. In hindsight an itemized receipt was not brought to the table, if it had I would have caught it right there. I guess I will have to go there and pay them a visit?

OT
OpenTable Diner
Detroit
2 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Ambience was perfect for date night. Great food and great spritz cocktail choices!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Grand Rapids
1 review
Dined on November 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband’s birthday dinner and everything was incredible !

EW
ElizabethW
Detroit
1 review
Dined on November 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fabulous service and food! The chef personally visited tables to welcome the evenings guests.

DW
DawnW
1 review
Dined on November 13, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Great dinner . Restaurant was inviting & pretty . Service was excellent . Food was good . Enjoyed the information about the building shared by our waiter!

GC
GeorgeC
Northern MI
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food is prepared to perfection, and waitstaff are attentive and engaging.

KL
KitchenLady
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great Food, Great atmosphere and wonderful staff. One of the best dining experiences in TC.

WB
WilliamB
Detroit
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food and service were both outstanding. The whole experience was wonderful!

R
Rapunzel
Cleveland
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Enjoyable dinner. Food was great. Server was attentive. Best dessert in Traverse City. We always have a good meal.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Northern MI
10 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As usual, excellent experience. Pepenero always delivers great food, excellent service and an inviting ambiance. Also very important these days, it’s not a stressful environment due to current rules & regulations.

BP
BonnieP
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I loved our whole experience at PepeNero. Our waiter war phenomenal. Along with both our meals. We were given the nice leisure pace of a special dinner out was for us.

KT
KirstaT
1 review
Dined on November 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything at PepeNero was phenomenal. Our server was attentive and answered questions well, food was prompt and well prepared along with delicious. Can't wait to return.

M
Michellzeb1
Chicago
15 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Enjoyed our meal out with friends. Dorin C. Gave great service. Food, wine and drinks were amazing.

a
vipankitam
Chicago
1 review
Dined on October 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Would definitely recommend this place. Service was excellent, our waitress was amazing and helped us make the best dessert choice (Panna Cotta).

PK
vipPhyllisK
Phoenix
23 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent meal, as always.
The staff pays exceptional attention to detail- remembers our likes and choices. Knowledgeable about their amazing wines.
We always feel welcome and love dining here.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of the best Italian restaurants in Michigan! Food was outstanding, service was impeccable, overall experience amazing!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always exceptional. They never disappoint.

K
Krista
Detroit
2 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Anniversary. We were presented with a flute of champagne to celebrate.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Incredible food and service! We’re not from Traverse City, this place was recommended by a local friend and I am so thankful because it was one of the best meals I’ve ever had. We also had late reservations and never felt rushed, highly recommend PepeNero! Heads up, get reservations way earlier than you would think you need to book them.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Detroit
1 review
Dined on October 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Service was above and beyond with a visit from the owner & chef. Everything we order was amazing, including the craft cocktails. Will definitely be back!

m
mindy
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on October 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I love this place. Every time the meal is amazing. We tried the octopus appetizer this time and I’m still dreaming about it. The pasta is always so fresh. Thank you!!

MA
MeganA
London
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Amazing food! The ravioloni was incredible. Great wine list. Very nice and knowledgeable waitstaff.

AS
vipArtS
Detroit
12 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful stylish Italian bistro in historic building. We both had Ravioli with home made sausage, porcini mushrooms and shaved truffles. It was to die for! Also fabulous Figs and Beets salad, and sorbetto and panne cotta made by the chef owner (Giorgio's wife). Service and ambience outstanding, and Giorgio stopped by to chat with us. Everyone was socially distanced and tables had hand sanitizer on them.

JY
JeraldY
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were able to get a reservation last minute and we were so pleasantly surprised by this beautiful restaurant!!

J
vipJing
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful meal with attentive service. The steak tartare is outstanding and our server Brad was spot on with his recommendations. Would definitely return next time we’re in the area to try out more of their menu.

f
foodiefun
Chicago
11 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent restaurant! The amuse bouche was a little crostini with sundried tomato-infused mascarpone with a Peruvian pickle on it - delicious. The crab croquette was also delicious with a little bit of lime zest to make it interesting coupled with a mayo sauce.

Now most people don't get excited about soups, but get the creamy butternut squash soup - it was absolutely amazing. It had a drizzle of oil with an amaretti cookie crumbled on top which hit all the right tastebud notes. Other diners at other tables felt the same way and you could hear it. My husband, who isn't big into soups or squash, couldn't stop eating it. I guess they switch it up with mushroom or asparagus soups in different seasons.

The wagyu beef rolled with prosciutto stuffed with a raisin/pine nut/mozzarella mash skewered and grilled sitting on a balsamic drizzle was delicious, but oddly enough the homemade sausage that came with it was the star of the dish (squeeze the lemon on it). Even the little potatoes were perfectly salted - every aspect of the dish thought through.

We had the panna cotta which came with a chocolate disk and tiny chocolate balls and a blood orange/liqueur sauce and another dessert with apple layered with white chocolate/vanilla mousse on a caramel cookie with shards of caramel atop. Both were stellar, perfectly balanced and proportioned.

This is truly a special restaurant. The servers were efficient, friendly and knowledgeable. We could see into the kitchen and every dish was given a once-over before coming out and the plates given a wipe down. That's how much they care. During this time of COVID, every single employee was wearing a mask properly pulled over their noses and left it there and no one was tugging at it or touching it. The attention to detail is at that level.

And, as a parting shot, they gave us a few chocolate truffles with a hint of coffee flavor. Absolutely perfect.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Raleigh
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband and I had dinner here on our honeymoon. Food was beyond delicious. Service was great. Will definitely return for another special occasion (a little too pricey for every day dinner).

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was outstanding - the food, service & ambiance were amazing and well worth it! We will be back to dine here again!

LS
LeahS
Detroit
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My mom loved her birthday dinner since the food and drinks were incredible. The brussel sprouts side was amazing and the vegetable dish with the pistachio mushroom sauce was unbelievable. I never thought veggies could taste so good! Our waiter Noah was very sweet as well.

AL
AndrewL
Detroit
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Second time back and the food was as incredible as the first time. The drinks were fantastic, the service is always top notch and the food is the best I’ve had in TC

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Kansas City
2 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

All around excellent experience!

DR
vipDRNO
Grand Rapids
96 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The dinner was delicious. I had the burrata for a starter and it was amazing. Wine list was great and we had a Chianti Reserve. Everything was wonderful.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Columbus
10 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything about this place is Special.
From the made fresh daily pastas, to the family recipes that are both unique and amazing! The chefs under direction of the owners, both chefs, advance in spinning comfort Italian and fusion flavors using local farm to table process.

The deserts are as authentic as the main course! Did I mention the mushroom soup is the standard by with all mushroom soups should be compared?
Yes it’s that spectacular.

Can’t wait to come back!!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Detroit
5 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Outstanding meal. Great value and great service

KG
KarrieG
Cancun
2 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a wonderful meal for our anniversary. The service was wonderful and they even brought us a complimentary champagne toast.

PY
PamY
Hawaii
2 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We celebrated a birthday and our experience was better than ever. We checked in at the patio area and were seated (socially distanced) in the dining room. Our served was attentive and the food was delicious. We have dined here before and this visit was outstanding Giorgio and Monica stopped by the table to check on our experience. The food was delicious from our appetizer, salad, entree, dessert and coffee. We will return.

A
Alex
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our server, David, was wonderful. He was professional, knowledgeable and pleasant. Our food was delicious. The dessert was especially a treat. The owner stopped by and spoke with us, and he was most gracious. This was our first trip to Traverse City, but we plan to return and will definitely eat here again.

AP
AlanaP
1 review
Dined on October 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Professional service, exceptional food and wine. We will be back!

CS
CiaraS
1 review
Dined on October 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Perfect place to celebrate our new engagement! We will definitely be back in the future!

FAQs

PepeNero Ristorantino Italiano / Ballaro Wine Lounge offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (231) 929-1960.

PepeNero Ristorantino Italiano / Ballaro Wine Lounge is rated 4.8 stars by 574 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.

Tweets by PepeNero Ristorantino Italiano / Ballaro Wine Lounge