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Mamma Mia! The Top 5 Italian Restaurants in Houston

The Top 5 Italian Restaurants in Houston

How We Picked: 

Authenticity: We looked to see if there were traditional dishes like homemade pasta, risotto, and osso buco on the menu. We also looked for Italian wines on the wine list. 
Quality of Ingredients: We considered restaurants that used high-quality ingredients like San Marzano tomatoes, fresh herbs, and cheeses. We also took into consideration restaurants that make their pasta in-house. 
Atmosphere:  In our opinion, the best Italian restaurants have a cozy, welcoming atmosphere that makes you feel at home. Hence, we considered restaurants that embodied some form of Italy, whether in their music or their decor. 
Service: We considered restaurants with servers who were knowledgeable about the menu and could make recommendations. We also looked at whether the servers were friendly and accommodating.

1. Trattoria Sofia

Website: Trattoria Sofia

Address: 911 W 11th St, Houston, TX 77008, United States

Contact Info: +1 713-804-0429


  • Sunday to Tuesday: 11 AM to 9 PM
  • Wednesday to Saturday: 11 AM to 11 PM
Google Reviews Score4.2/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Facebook Reviews Score4.9/5
Total Reviews4.5/5
Score Consistency4.5/5
Authenticity 5/5
Quality of Ingredients 5/5


  • Olive tree on patio
  • Sweet wines 
  • Rich prosciutto pizza
  • Smoky polpo arrosto 
  • Delicious Sofia salumi 


  • Atmosphere gets dark  

We recently ate at Trattoria Sofia for a team dinner. From the moment we stepped through the doors, the staff greeted us warmly, eager to show us to our table.

We were immediately charmed by the upscale elegance of the decor. The dining area has a stunning olive tree in the center of the patio. 

We decided to start our meal with the Sofia Salumi selection, which consisted of various Italian cold meats, cheeses, and spicy warm honey. We liked how the meats were all freshly cut, and the flavors were robust and delicious.

Furthermore, the cheeses were also incredibly fresh, and the spicy honey provided a delightful kick of sweetness. We were also served a complimentary basket of warm, crusty bread, which complemented the salumi perfectly.

For our main course, we chose the Polpo Arrosto. We thought the octopus was perfectly cooked with a tender, succulent texture and a hint of sweetness.

The smoky char from the grill gave a delicious depth of flavor, further enhanced by the subtle seasonings and fresh herbs.

We also ordered the Prosciutto Pizza. We thought the crust was crispy, and the toppings were generous and delicious—the lemon zest was a nice touch.

Moreover, we liked how the subtle sweetness of the honey was a nice contrast to the salty flavor of the prosciutto. The sheep milk ricotta was a unique twist to the usual Prosciutto Pizza.

The Trattoria Sofia also offers a wide selection of wines. So obviously, we had to sample a bottle or two—the Italian wines we had were sweet tasting, fruity, and light.

The only downside was that the dining room got a bit dark inside. However, we noted that the patio was well-lit!

2. Coltivare

Give credit to: jesscreates.htx

Website: Coltivare

Address: 3320 White Oak Dr, Houston, TX 77007, United States

Contact Info: +1 832-203-7890


  • Monday, Wednesday & Thursday: 5 PM to 10 PM
  • Tuesday: Closed
  • Saturday to Sunday: 5 PM to 11 PM 
Google Reviews Score4.4/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Facebook Reviews Score4.1/5
Total Reviews4.3/5
Score Consistency4.3/5
Authenticity 5/5
Quality of Ingredients 5/5


  • Delicious grilled calamari 
  • Delectable ricotta gnocchi
  • Excellent wine list
  • Creamy bolognese


  • Slow service

Coltivare, a chic Italian restaurant, is quickly becoming the hottest dinner spot in town. Its lively atmosphere, refreshingly simple décor, and inventive Italian cuisine made it easy to see why they are so popular.

On our recent visit to Coltivare, we sampled the restaurant’s offerings, including grilled calamari, ricotta gnocchi, and tagliatelle.

To start, we thought the grilled calamari was delicious, to say the least. The squid was incredibly tender, with an incredibly flavorful char balanced by a zesty lemon sauce.

We found that the combination of the lemon’s tartness and the char’s smokiness was spot on. When enjoyed with a smooth glass of white wine from Coltivare’s excellent wine list, the grilled calamari was truly a delight!

Next, we tried the ricotta gnocchi. The pillowy, dumpling-style pasta was melt-in-your-mouth delectable. We liked how the ricotta cheese gave the gnocchi its signature creaminess while the perfectly cooked mushrooms added an earthy richness.

Moreover, the waitress we had told us this dish was best enjoyed with a glass of the restaurant’s signature house red blend—so that’s exactly what we had.

Lastly, we tried the tagliatelle. This dish was equally impressive.

The noodles were al dente, with just the right amount of chewiness. We liked that the creamy bolognese sauce was rich and flavorful, with a hint of sweetness from the fresh tomatoes.

In our opinion, the parmesan cheese added a layer of complexity to the dish, elevating it to the next level.

The only downside to our visit was the slow service, as it took us some to be seated at our table.

3. Rosalie Italian Soul

Website: Rosalie Italian Soul

Address: Baldwin Hotel, 400 Dallas St C, Houston, TX 77002, United States

Contact Info: +1 713-351-5790


  • Monday to Thursday: 11 AM to 2 PM & 5 PM to 9 PM  
  • Friday: 11 AM to 2 PM & 5 PM to 10 PM 
  • Saturday to Sunday: 10 AM to 3 PM & 5 PM to 9 PM 
Google Reviews Score4.1/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Total Reviews4/5
Score Consistency4/5
Authenticity 4.3/5
Quality of Ingredients 4.5/5


  • Retro decor
  • Flavorful risotto balls
  • Delicious doughboys 


  • Overcooked rigatoni
  • Oily and flavorless ravioli 

The small and quaint Italian restaurant, Rosalie Italian Soul, is worth visiting. At least, that’s what we’ve been told by those who’ve been here.

When we went to Rosalie Italian Soul for a team lunch, we immediately liked the cheerful interior with its bright walls and cute retro décor. While the atmosphere didn’t scream Italy, we liked how aesthetically pleasing it was.

The menu was an eclectic mix of Italian favorites with some unique dishes. We ordered the crispy risotto balls, mushroom pizza, rigatoni, ravioli, and doughboys.

We liked that the risotto balls were crunchy and flavorful, with a subtle hint of garlic and Parmesan cheese. We also savored every bite of the pizza, which had a thin and crispy crust, slightly charred in places.

We thought the mushrooms maintained a firmness while absorbing the herbs on the pizza. The cheese was also gooey and dripped from the sides of every slice we had.

While we thought the rigatoni was slightly overcooked, the sauce was rich and flavorful. But we didn’t like the ravioli we had—they were oily and lacked flavor.

However, for us, the doughboys were the highlight of the meal. They had a light and airy texture and took our taste buds to heaven when dipped in the maple syrup. 

4. Il Bracco

Website: Il Bracco

Address: 1705-A Post Oak Blvd, Houston, TX 77056, United States

Contact Info: +1 713-532-9950


  • Sunday to Thursday: 11 AM to 10 PM
  • Friday to Saturday: 11 AM to 11 PM 
Google Reviews Score4.3/5
Yelp Reviews Score4.5/5
Facebook Reviews Score5/5
Total Reviews4.5/5
Score Consistency4.5/5
Authenticity 4.7/5
Quality of Ingredients 4.6/5


  • Amazing focaccia bread 
  • Vast wine menu 
  • Rich shrimp pasta


  • Salty bolognese 

We dined at Il Bracco, an Italian restaurant that many have raved to us. Everyone we’ve talked to who’s eaten here raved about their homemade focaccia bread and their amazing wine selection.

When we first came to Il Bracco, the first impression we had of this place was that it was swanky and had a very inviting atmosphere. The interior decor was modern yet cozy.

We also liked that the staff made sure we felt right at home. Upon receiving our menus, obviously, the first thing we asked about was their focaccia bread!

It was served to us fresh, hot, right out of their oven, warm with a side of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar. The bread was soft and fluffy, with a toasted crunchy crust.

Furthermore, the olive oil was flavorful and fragrant, and the balsamic vinegar added a nice tangy note.

We then chose to order their shrimp pasta, bolognese, and spicy gemelli. The shrimp pasta was made with spaghetti noodles, shrimp, and peas in a creamy tomato sauce.

We thought the chef did a great job at balancing the flavors between the richness of the cream, the sweetness of the shrimp, and the slight acidity of the tomatoes. Plus, the shrimp was cooked to perfection, and the pasta was cooked al dente.

As for the bolognese, we thought that they did this classic dish justice. We liked the thickness of the bolognese sauce, and it didn’t overpower the beef or the herbs.

The only complaint we have is that the bolognese was salty and had us reaching for our glasses of water.

Additionally, we thought the gemelli was a little too spicy for us, but it was flavorful nonetheless. We noted that the sauce was a combination of garlic, tomatoes, and red pepper flakes—all powerhouse flavors.

Now for our favorite part—the wine menu! We thought it was great that the wine menu was varied and offered a great selection of wines from around the world.

However, their featured wines contain bottles of wine directly from Italy. We tried a few samples of their reds, whites, and chardonnays, which we must say paired excellently with our meal.

5. Giacomo’s Cibo e Vino

Website: Giacomo’s Cibo e Vino

Address: 3215 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77098, United States

Contact Info:  +1 713-522-1934


  • Sunday & Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday to Saturday: 4 to 9 PM 
Google Reviews Score4.6/5
Yelp Reviews Score4/5
Facebook Reviews Score4.4/5
Total Reviews4.5/5
Score Consistency4.4/5
Authenticity 4.6/5
Quality of Ingredients 4.7/5


  • Delicious garlic bread
  • Tangy ratatouille 
  • Hearty pasta e fagioli 
  • Nutty tortellini 


  • Salty porchetta 

Giacomo’s Cibo e Vino has a quaint outdoor patio, snug interior, and mouth-watering cuisine. From what we noted, there were many couples, groups of friends, and families there.

For starters, we would definitely recommend making a reservation as we noted the restaurant tends to fill up quickly. We were at Giacomo’s Cibo e Vino for an after-work dinner and ordered quite a few of their dishes, but only a select few really stood out to us.

We started our feast with a delicious appetizer of garlic bread—we could smell it as it came out of the kitchen! It was served hot, and it had that perfect crust around the edges while remaining buttery and garlicky in the middle.

Thankfully, the portion size was large enough to share, so it made an excellent start to our meal.

For our entrees, we ordered a couple classic Italian dishes. We got the ratatouille, pasta e fagioli, and tortellini.

We liked how their ratatouille had a sweet and tangy flavor, with a hint of spice from the herbs and garlic. The zucchini, eggplant, onions, and tomatoes blended together to create an irresistible taste, and they melted right in our mouths.

As for the pasta e fagioli, we thought it had a savory tomato flavor, balanced between sweet and tart. We found it comforting and hearty, with a richness from the cannellini beans and small pasta shells.

Plus, the sauce was thick, with an herbal taste that lingered on our tongues.

The tortellini was filled with what we thought was some sort of creamy cheese filling, which gave it a slightly sweet flavor. We liked the freshly grated Parmesan cheese, which gave the pasta a salty and nutty finish.

Finally, we were impressed by the gigantic wine list at Giacomo’s. From Chianti to Pinot Grigio, there was something for everyone.

The prices were reasonable, and we were able to find a bottle that fit our budget.

The only downside to our experience was the salty porchetta. The porchetta was cooked to perfection, but unfortunately, the seasoning was a bit too heavy.

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