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The best Italian restaurants in Manchester

Confidentials    1 year ago

Italian restaurants have been the choice di moda for Brits heading out for a slap-up meal. So much so that they began to feel a bit old hat, with many a chain expanding faster than a belly full of pasta.

At one point, we were a bit over it, with lesser-explored culinary territories all the rage as diners got stuck into the likes of Korean, Cambodian and Ethiopian menus with gusto.

Nevertheless, there are some Italian restaurants in Manchester that really should be celebrated. They are inventive, authentic, and remind us why we fell in love with the food of Italy in the first place. Buon appetito!

  • A tavola new mills
    Book Now Greater Manchester

    A Tavola

    Restaurant - Italian

    A Tavola has an offbeat charm. Don’t be put off by the exterior. Sicilian delights await within.

    Inside, it is a bit of a squeeze. Intimate, as they say. It will be even more of a squeeze after you’ve stuffed yourself silly on authentic Sicilian food. And the food is the thing.

    From the look of the place, you might be expecting a few simple pizzas and not much more but you’d be wrong. Pizzas are most certainly on the menu but there are all sorts of dishes, from Sicilian street food to decadently alcoholic tiramisu. What links them is the quality of the ingredients, with many shipped over from respected Italian suppliers.

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  • Neapolitan-style wood fired pizza at Double Zero in Chorlton
    Chorlton

    Double Zero

    Restaurant - Italian

    An authentic Neapolitan-style pizzeria, Double Zero in Chorlton has been lauded as one of the best in the UK.

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  • Produce from Lupo caffe Italiano
    Prestwich

    Lupo

    Restaurant - Italian

    Patiscerria and small-batch Italian hand-roasted coffee that’s the name of the game at the award-winning Lupo Caffe Italiano.

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  • The Pasta Factory, Manchester
    Book Now Northern Quarter

    The Pasta Factory

    Restaurant - Italian

    The group of friends behind The Pasta Factory’s story originally hail from Turin in the northern region of Piedmont, so this is the place for authentic Italian food full of flavour, with dishes created from scratch using only the best fresh ingredients in season.

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  • Book Now Manchester City Centre

    Rosso

    Restaurant - Italian

    If it’s a stylish lunch date destination you’re after or some suitably chic eats for dinner à deux, Rosso might be the one, resplendent in clean white suffused with natural light and with plenty of Italian-inspired vegetarian, pescatarian and meat-lover options on the menu.

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  • Neapolitan-style pizzas being prepared at Rudy's Pizza in Ancoats, Manchester
    Book Now Ancoats

    Rudy’s Pizza Manchester Ancoats

    Restaurant - Italian

    Listed amongst the world’s best pizzerias in international pizza guide, Where To Eat Pizza, Rudy’s Pizza has grown from a pop-up project into a full blown word-of-mouth phenomenon.

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  • Salvi's Italian Restaurant Northern Quarter
    Book Now Northern Quarter

    Salvi’s Manchester Northern Quarter

    Restaurant - Italian

    Salvi’s NQ is the baby of what claims to be Manchester’s first independent Neapolitan restaurant, and if traditional, authentic southern Italian cuisine is on your mind, this is definitely a place to sniff out.

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  • The buzzy restaurant floor at San Carlo Cicchetti in Manchester city centre
    Book Now Manchester City Centre

    San Carlo Cicchetti

    Restaurant - Italian

    As the first San Carlo Cicchetti, the Manchester restaurant had a lot to prove on opening in 2010. Over a decade and several awards later, it’s still going strong. Why? We think it’s attention to detail. Founder Carlo Distefano is a stickler for quality and you’ll find the same passion for produce and impeccable service at every San Carlo. Let’s just say it runs in the family. 

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  • The exterior of San Carlo Manchester with its distinctive orange awning.
    Book Now Manchester City Centre

    San Carlo Manchester

    Restaurant - Italian

    San Carlo is Manchester’s most famous and, some say, best Italian restaurant. Run by the Distefano family, it’s said to have one of the largest turnovers in the UK. It’s also the place to be papped and there’s usually a bank of photographers outside to prove the point.

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  • Floral outdoor display at Sicilian NQ Manchester
    Book Now Northern Quarter

    Sicilian NQ

    Restaurant - Italian

    Based in the Northern Quarter, this friendly neighbourhood bistro and bar is the place to avanti if it’s a taste of traditional Sicily you fancy – from authentic street food snacks through big plates of pasta to desserts and holiday memory gelato, eat in or take away.

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  • A dish of pasta with a glass of red wine at Sugo Pasta Kitchen Altrincham, a Confidential Guides recommended restaurant
    Book Now Altrincham

    Sugo Pasta Kitchen Altrincham

    Restaurant - Italian

    Another Altrincham success story, the Puglian-inspired Sugo Pasta Kitchen opened on Shaw Road – right by the transformative Market House – in 2015. Their simple and uncompromisingly authentic Southern Italian dishes soon won them fans, as good ole word-of-mouth momentum brought diners piling in from across the region. Accolades and glowing reviews soon followed, as did further restaurants.

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  • Fresh tomato and olives on a Neapolitan-style pizza at Tre Ciccio - an Italian restaurant in Altrincham
    Book Now Altrincham

    Tre Ciccio Altrincham

    Restaurant - Italian

    Translating as ‘three chubby friends’ (a self-effacing reference to owner Francesco Scafuri and a pair of his portly pals from back in Campania), Tre Ciccio Altrincham doesn’t look much from the outside, or even the inside, at first.

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  • Pappardelle al ragu’ bianco di agnello e crema ai funghi
    Book Now Salford

    Vero Moderno

    Restaurant - Italian

    Another fab addition to the clutch of good, independent Italian restaurants in the city is Vero Moderno. Situated on the regenerated Chapel Street just inside Salford, it joins Salvi’s, Pasta Factory, and Lupo on our list of ‘proper’ Italians which swerve the standard carbonara and bolognese in favour of something a little more considered.

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