Sportello

4.7
1975 reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
With two "U"-shaped counters situated around an open kitchen, Sportello (Italian for counter service) offers a menu of Chef Barbara Lynch's trattoria-inspired Italian dishes for both lunch and dinner. A modern interpretation of a diner located in Boston's Fort Point neighborhood, Sportello features an approachable, artisan wine list curated by James Beard Award Winner Cat Silirie. Snag a stool at the counter and enjoy a bowl of handmade pasta!

Please note: Sportello is primarily counter seating, but does have several tables for more conventional seating. Tables are available for parties of five or more or by request. Requests are honored based on availability.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Italian
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Hours of operation
Lunch: Monday - Sunday: 11:30am - 4:30pm
Dinner: Sunday-Wednesday 4:30pm - 10pm
Thursday-Saturday 4:30pm - 11pm
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Phone number
(617) 737-1234
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Barbara Lynch
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Catering
Barbara Lynch Gruppo catering company 9 At Home offers unique and exclusive catering from No. 9 Park, B&G Oysters, The Butcher Shop and Sportello. Please contact 617-423-4200 or info@9athome.com
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
A Street
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Parking details
In addition to evening valet ($18) and on-street parking, there are several open air lots and garages within two blocks of Sportello. There is a large garage on Stillings Street, a small lot on Farnsworth and several large lots on Boston Wharf Road & Congress Street.
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Public transit
For those taking public transportation, we are a short walk from South Station.
Additional
Beer, Counter Seating, Gluten-free Menu, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 1975 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.5
service
4.3
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
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b
New England
15 reviews
Dined 11 hours ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Delicious oso bucco, strozzapretti, and gnocchi.

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HS
Chicago
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

I had an early Sunday lunch at Sportello with my family, and it was absolutely wonderful. The room was bright, spacious, and interesting. The window seats provide a nice perch from which to watch people walking by on Congress Street. The service was quick and friendly. The pasta was home made and cooked perfectly. And the bread! I can't wait to go back.

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NY
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Sportello lived up to my expectations! They were extremely accommodating and made a big deal about the birthday we were celebrating! They had many gluten free options!

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VG
New England
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food is amazing and we love Nathan. He makes it feel like we're dining at a friend's home, eating the most delicious pasta ever made!

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CM
New England
7 reviews
Dined on November 8, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 3

Food was amazing (especially bolognese pasta) but service was mediocre.

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ED
New England
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 2ambience 2

Food was good, though portions small. Thought my entree was appetizer size when it landed in front of me. And I absolutely despise this whole diner/counter seating concept. I don't like diner stools in actual diners, but tolerate them because it's a diner: food is good, plentiful and cheap. Well this food is good, but not plentiful or cheap. On top of that, the way the counter is configured you stare at the people across from you. The waitress was also a bit too much like one who'd take my order in a diner. So, yeah...no.

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OT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 2food 5service 3ambience 2

The food was amazing. Our service was okay and I really disliked sitting next to the kitchen. The cooks has long hair and didn’t wear hairnets and this bothered me as I watched them prepare my food.

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c
London
3 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Energetic space with a caring staff who were all team players. Every course was seasoned perfectly. If I lived in Boston, I would be a weekly Sportello Customer.

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JK
New England
5 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Friends from out of town came in for dinner and a show and we had a great time. Sportello was a great spot for dinner! The food was outstanding, Lindsey our waitress was wonderful, we had a window table so the street vibe added to the experience...overall great!

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JP
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Excellent service and tasty food! Gluten, dairy, and soy free options available. Very nice spot for a date with food allergies.

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M
New York Area
24 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The best gnocchi I've had in years, or perhaps ever. Light, fluffy, not gummy like most.
Servings are large, so don't over-order. On the other hand, excess makes for a good lunch the next day. Reservations are a must, and specify counter (no backs on seats) or tables. Everything was excellent. The staff were not only good, but they seemed very happy.

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OT
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 2

Portions were small- 4 ounce steak service was not good. Actually food was good but very small menu

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c
Cleveland
9 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Is it polite to dive head first into a bowl of light and pillowy gnocchi? Or, to just eat a bowl of prosciutto? The food was simply fabulous, cooked to perfection, and made in front of you with the bar seating around the open kitchen. Service was casual for a Tuesday night; the staff left you to relax and enjoy the food. Plates are good size. Dessert, especially the coconut cake, looked like it was heaven-sent but we were to full to try it.

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T
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 2

The food was good. But the waitress wasn’t very attentive, didn’t ask us if we wanted drinks, we had to track her down to show us a wine list, etc. the restaurant wasn’t even that busy so I’m not sure what the issue was.

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CL
New England
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really Nice place, very good food, good wine and great service. I definitely recommands the place.

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AF
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 2ambience 4

Bland overpriced food, rude inattentive waiters. Huge let down.

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j
New Mexico
2 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As usual, Sportello was fantastic. The service was excellent (Ethan), the food was amazing and a good time was had by all.

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GK
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

We did the feast/tasting menu, and at $55 per person the value is incredible. Five courses that can be selected by the kitchen or yourselves and really give a great overall impression of the cuisine, which is made with thought and skill. The tagliatelle is absolutely incredible.

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OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Even though I avoided the specialty of the house, pasta; the digestif, appetizers & main was excellent.

The fava bean puree followed by the chicken and a canolli for dessert

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HW
Seattle
4 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I requested a table and despite it being a busy night my guest and I could have a conversation. Food was excellent, service and wine also top rate. Overall very good experience. The cold cauliflower salad was delicious, peppers well prepared, and my pork chop went really well with the Sicilian red. I stopped by and chatted with some friends at the counter and got to try a couple amazing pasta dishes. Wine prices a bit steep, but the selections were good.

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MC
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

I went to this place with my husband and three other friends with two kids, for lunch on Sunday. The service was really bad. We could see maximum three serves for the whole restaurant. Every time we needed something it took a long time for someone to see us. Even coffee took forever. When we questioned the waitress about the wait she said they were out of cups (?!). I believe that a restaurant that charges almost 30 dollars for most plates, should have better service. Another complaint we had was with the amount of food on the Uni Pasta plate. It was almost incredible that a main course would come with such a tiny portion of pasta. We called the waiter about it and he brought another portion of plain pasta when we had already finished the meal. He than offered to put some sauce on top of it. Anyway, I think this place is very famous because of its owner, but there is nothing exceptional about it. It's good food, put too pricey for the service and the quantities.

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n
Portland
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food ,service ... really would recommend it if your visiting .... it’s special

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OT
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

First time at Sportello. Very familiar with the area. Food was wonderful. Tomato Soup is a must try! I had Ravioli as my entree. Also very yummy. Service was good. Server helped with a dessert suggestion in Theatre District.

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K
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

I ordered the mussels and octopus carpaccio and both were tasty. I had a pasta with uni in it and the Uni must have been on the way out. It had a terrible taste that took over my pasta and I couldn’t eat it and I love uni. They service was ok but there wasn’t one person that worked there that had a smile on their face. When you go out and spend money you want the servers to interact with you and make your experience memorable. Anyone can take an order and deliver your food. A place like this needs some personality. I don’t think I would return but I had a great time regardless bc of my company.

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TC
1 review
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing rabbit dish. Great service - very attentive staff.

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

I have always loved Sportello. But sadly it just wasn’t good
The food was over buttered and we had poor service - couldn’t even get water

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FP
Los Angeles
24 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

That coconut cake is divine! Food was amazing and each dish was meticulously prepared.

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SC
New York Area
13 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a delightful dining experience last night at Sportello. From our greeting at the entrance to the final crumbs of the delicious coconut cake, this restaurant provided exceptional food, service, and ambiance. We are not from Boston, but serendiptiy brought us to Sportello. Arriving in Boston on a cold damp evening and looking for a restaurant within a short walk from our Seaport hotel, we hit the jackpot.

Sportello ticked off 100% in all the boxes starting with our server Ethan (who felt like an old friend), to the innovative food, warm and friendly ambiance and gracious staff. I am sure many people go to Sportello just for the excellent food, but we wanted a dining experience as well, and certainly got it with the tasting menu, open kitchen, excellent staff, and friendly regular diners surrounding us.

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E
New England
80 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 5ambience 4

Food was good. Cavatelli was particularly tasty. The service was also good. A bit loud in part due to the counter dining and people yelling across.

Big complaint for me is being unable to sit comfortably on a stool for 90 minutes or so eating dinner. A shorter stay say for a quick lunch might be ok but for a nice sit down dinner it’s a bit tough on your back with no support.

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JP
Miami
10 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was a thoroughly wonderful meal filled with flavor and aromatic fragrance. Excellent service and great wine and food suggestions.

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H
New England
32 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The Kale Salad was well prepared and delicious. I also had potato gnocchi with lobster and vegetables. The portion was generous and more than enough for me. My lunch partner had the Rabbit Stew which was also quite good but the gnocchi was the clear winner. It was noisy though and hard to carry on conversation.

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OT
San Francisco
33 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

I'm very happy to have discovered this place. If you like authentic homemade pasta...this is your place.

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BG
Kansas City
47 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious homemade pasta. Nice window table overlooking the street on a rainy evening.

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JK
Key West
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place was simply superb. Ethan was our server and was extremely knowledgeable and made excellent recommendations on both food and wine to accompany our dishes. It was a great experience from start to finish and would highly recommend, well worth it!

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k
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service at Sportello was above and beyond. The food was innovative and every dish we got was amazing. A new favorite in Boston.

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r
New England
21 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Too much for too little!
Very noisy. My husband thought that the service was slow. His entree was very small and he had to ask for more.

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GA
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was great from the food to the service, our waiter i think tom was his name was very good.

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F
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Great food, horribly uncomfortable seating at the bar.

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TK
Denver
2 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We enjoyed a special dinner for our 39th anniversary.

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M
New England
14 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a wonderful dinner at Sportello! The tagliatelle never disappoints. The burrata crostini was amazing. Our server was attentive and helpful. We will definitely be back again.

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