Sometimes you just crave the home comfort of good Italian food. Maybe you’re craving lasagna, pizza, or risotto. Milwaukee has you covered. If you are searching for the best Italian restaurants in Milwaukee, then look no further.
Italian dishes are some of the most popular types of cuisines in Milwaukee. Therefore, there are numerous authentic Italian restaurants in Milwaukee to try out. Each Milwaukeean has its favorite authentic Italian restaurant.
Check out this list of the top 10 best Italian restaurants in Milwaukee to satisfy your food cravings.
1. Egg and Flour
This is one of the newer Italian restaurants in Milwaukee, but it deserves a spot on our list because it is TASTY! If you watch Hells Kitchen, you would have seen the owner & chef Adam Pawlak, in Season 19. Egg and Flour has an authentic and eclectic Italian food menu, and they serve a different “pasta-of-the-day.” Check their Facebook page for that day’s unique creation.
Egg and Flour are known for their seasonal Italian dishes. You can therefore expect to find some of the freshest ingredients around.
If you are visiting on a Friday, be sure to try their Rigatoni Lobster Mac & Cheese. It’s a Friday-only exclusive, so snap it up while you can. Or try the Bucatini, their pesto cream sauce signature pasta.
Substitute pasta for zucchini noodles if you want authentic Italian food but something lightweight.
Chef Pawlak was born and raised with Italian heritage. You can tell because this Italian food tastes good. Of course, all the pasta and sauces are created by hand, fresh to serve.
Sorella opened in 2020 but has become one of the best Italian restaurants in Milwaukee. They are a dinner-only restaurant, but they have a nice bar that’s worth a drink or two. This has become one of the best restaurants in Milwaukee. This is one of my new favorite restaurants.
Sorella is based on the authenticity of good Southern Italian cooking. They’ve got everything you’d want from a good Italian restaurant. Try the Chicken Parmigiana or the gluten and dairy-free Wood Roasted Spigola. They have an ever-changing menu because they try to source local produce.
The biggest problem at Sorella is deciding what to eat. We recommend ordering a couple of dishes and sharing. It will make the decision easier. My friend and I shared a pizza, a pasta dish, and a bottle of wine on my last visit.
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- Address: 2535 S Kinnickinnic Ave, Milwaukee
Tenuta’s has been around for more than ten years. It has become a Milwaukee Italian restaurant staple. It is the favorite among many locals and tourists alike. Tenuta’s is always packed no matter what week of the week it is.
Tenuta’s prioritizes a simple and tasty menu over anything flashy. Their classic Italian menu has got all the popular favorites. They also have tons of gluten-free pasta & pizza options and vegetarian options.
For pizza, you can choose a thin or deep dish crust or even a stuffed one. They’ve got an array of toppings to select from, allowing you to create your own pizza. At Tenuta’s, you can always guarantee that they have the freshest ingredients. I always go for the classic thin-crust pizza with sausage.
The flavor combinations in all their dishes are sublime. Delectable flavors that literally burst on your tongue.
With its history, word of mouth has made this a popular evening spot. To avoid disappointment or a seat at the bar, it’s recommended to make a reservation. Parking is super easy in this part of Bay View, which is always a perk.
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- Address: 2995 S Clement Ave, Milwaukee
4. Santino’s Little Italy
Santino’s Little Italy serves up the best wood-fired Neapolitan pizzas in Milwaukee. You just can’t argue with wood-fired pizza. Everything is good on the menu. Make sure to get the Bocce Ball as a starter!
For something meat-free, try the Greek Pizza. It’s served with a housemade garlic sauce, feta, artichokes, olives, and mozzarella. Or if you want some delicious meat pizza try the Italian Beef Giardiniera. It’s succulent slices of roast beef with giardiniera sauce and mozzarella. This is also Santino’s personal pick!
The ultimate test of how good a pizza restaurant is their Margherita. If they can’t do that, well, then why bother? Santino’s Margherita is the ultimate pizza in Milwaukee. You could easily visit Santino’s time and time again just for a Margherita pizza.
If they can’t decide what you want on your pizza, then create your own. Your creations could rival Santino’s classic favorites.
Dine inside or on Santino’s patio. This is a relaxing evening restaurant. We suggest calling ahead and making reservations. Parking is super easy.
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- Address: 352 E Stewart St, Milwaukee
Zarletti has become a well-established Milwaukee Italian restaurant. Set in the heart of the downtown, it attracts a lively crowd. If you’ve been busy with Milwaukee activities, head to this perfectly located Italian.
If you like seafood, start with the Gamberi Pancetta or the shrimp-wrapped pancetta. For your entree, ask your waiter about the Ravioli del Giorno. They have a ton of flavor combinations and are always experimenting with new flavors. Their stuffed handmade pasta changes daily, giving you refreshing new flavors.
Diners are continually happy with both the service and the food at Zarletti.
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- Address: 741 N Milwaukee St, Milwaukee
6. Barbiere’s Italian Restaurant on Bluemound
Barbiere’s is an authentic Italian restaurant in Milwaukee dating back to 1963. Sal Barbiere opened this restaurant with his wife and son. They created all the classic Italian dishes they would serve at home. Word traveled quickly about Barbiere’s impressive food, and people started showing up.
After 34 years in the service industry, Barbiere decided to retire. They sold the place to long-time employee Mark Dempsey. He had worked in the restaurant since he was 16, so he knew a thing or two.
Barbiere’s has sandwiches, pizza, pasta, and yummy desserts. Barbiere’s Meat Lasagna is the same authentic recipe. There’s even a Veggie Lasagna, so you vegetarians don’t miss out on that sauce!
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- Address: 5844 W Bluemound Rd, Milwaukee
This Italian restaurant is located within Balistreri’s Bluemound Inn. They serve up a mixture of Italian and American fares. They’ve got authentic Italian dishes, seafood, steak, and Milwaukee favorites.
If you are looking for a family-friendly Italian restaurant, this is the place.
You have to try the lasagna, one of their most requested dishes. The lasagna is large, cheesy, and the sauce is divine. The lasagne dinner also comes with soup, garlic bread, and salad and is super affordable.
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- Address: 6501 W Bluemound Rd, Milwaukee
This Milwaukee Italian restaurant is a super cute space. Tall ceilings and wooden beams make for a unique dining experience. In summer, you can even dine outside on their cute patio space. There really is a unique European bistro feel to this Milwaukee Italian restaurant.
Onesto literally means honest in Italian. This restaurant prides itself on its authentic Italian food and from-scratch cooking.
Onesto has a variety of shareable plates as well as sizeable entrees. If you want a quick dining option or a relaxing evening, this is the place. Some of the most unique items on their menu are their stuffed jars.
The Housemade Ricotta, English Pea, Mint, and Lemon Zest is perfection in a jar. Why not pick the Olive Tapenade Herbed Cheese? They serve up all the classic Italian dishes as well as steak, halibut, and salmon.
To go with your meal, they have an extensive wine list. Be sure to ask the wait staff for their pairing recommendations. If you have any room left for dessert, be sure to order the tiramisu. You can never go wrong with tiramisu in an Italian restaurant.
You can make reservations online. Parking can be tough over here, especially if there is a festival going on at the Summerfest grounds. Give yourself ample time for parking.
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- Address: 221 N Broadway, Milwaukee
9. Tre Rivali
You’ll find Tre Rivali beneath the Kimpton Journeyman Hotel. This elegant dining space serves up a variety of wood-fired pizzas and pasta.
Enjoy the Crispy Pork Belly Pizza. It’s succulently ravishing. They have several shareable bites, perfect for a group of friends. Or try their small platters, which include Grilled Peaches, Mussels, and Pulpo.
You’ve got to try one of their handmade pasta dishes. The Ricotta Dumplings are stuffed with mushrooms, kale, and truffled ricotta.
Tre Rivali’s interior is really aesthetically pleasing. There’s a cafe, vibrant bar, lounge, and dining area. There’s a kind of industrial warehouse vibe to this place, which is ultra-trendy yet historic.
One of Tre Rivali’s aims is to use the highest quality ingredients. They try to use as many products as possible from Wisconsin farmers, fishermen, and artisanal dealers. Supporting the local economy and food culture is at the heart of their mission.
You can make reservations online. Parking can be tough over here, especially if a festival occurs at the Summerfest grounds. Give yourself ample time for parking.
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- Address: 220 N Broadway, Milwaukee
Sometimes it’s just too difficult to decide on the right pasta dish. Dorsia solved this common restaurant-goer problem by serving pasta flights! Dorsia is completely one of a kind, serving this innovative option. Pick two, three, or all four pasta options.
This Italian restaurant serves tons of classic dishes, and they are even open for brunch. You have to start your dinner off the Italian way with a shot of Limoncello. After, try one of Dorsia’s many starters, perhaps the Burratta Bruschetta or Eggplant chips.
If you are craving pizza, try The Jeno, pomodoro, sausage, and mushroom. Or the Biancellino, which is covered in irresistible parmesan fonduta and pulled bacon. If you need a gluten-free crust, they also offer this alternative.
You should definitely taste the Duck Carbonara for its melt-in-the-mouth perfection. You also can’t go wrong with the Dorsia Lasagna or the Alfredo.
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- Address: 1307 E Brady St, Milwaukee