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Where to Get Italian Food in Detroit

Great spots for when youโ€™re craving Italian.

Are you looking for the best Italian restaurants in Detroit? Look no further because I’ve compiled a list of the best places to find Italian food in Motor City.

cheesy beef lasagna in detroit italian restaurants

There’s so much to do in Detroit, from the Detroit Industry Murals to the Motown Museum. End your busy day of sightseeing at one of the city’s fantastic Italian restaurants.

Experience an unforgettable night out and taste the city’s top pasta dishes, pizza, and beer.

These restaurants have a fantastic atmosphere, staff, and locations, and I recommend visiting as many as possible.

Check out my list of the best Italian restaurants in Detroit below!


Giovanni’s Ristorante

330 Oakwood, Detroit, MI 48217
Phone: 313-841-0122
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You have to visit Giovanni’s Ristorante when you’re in Detroit. It’s a family-owned Italian restaurant in Oakwood with handmade pasta.

Frank Sinatra once ate at this famous spot, and it’s a must-visit place. Giovanni’s Ristorante is just off the Rouge River, a few streets from the iconic Fort St. Bridge.

It has a rustic, homey vibe, and the cuisine follows classic Italian traditions.

I like the old-world Italian atmosphere, and I always visit Giovanni’s when I’m in town.

Usually, I order the Pesto al Pomodoro, a cheesy pasta dish with sweet basil and olive oil. Or, try the delicious ricotta dumplings.


PizzaPapalis

3171 E Jefferson, Detroit, MI 48207
Phone: 313-259-7272
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Are you looking for the best pizza in the city? I’ve got you covered.

PizzaPapalis is the local’s favorite pizza spot in the Detroit Metro area, and it regularly wins awards at its many locations.

PizzaPapalis in Detroit is at E Jefferson St in Rivertown, near the Detroit River.

The atmosphere is trendy and casual, and the pizza place is great for families with kids.

Order a deep dish or thin crust pizza dripping with cheese and your favorite toppings. I recommend the Detroit-style pizza.

It’s a rectangular pizza with a thick, chewy crust โ€“ a pizza you won’t want to miss.


Buddy’s Pizza

Multiple locations
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Are you looking for a restaurant that specializes in Detroit-style pizza? Check out Buddy’s, a Detroit staple with square pizza slices.

Buddy’s has several locations, including Downtown and Six Mile Detroit.

The classic eatery has been open since 1946, and the restaurant proudly serves pizza and American bar food in a historic, casual atmosphere.

I like to build a personalized pizza with Wisconsin brick cheese, tomato basil sauce, and Italian sausage.

Try the spaghetti with marinara, soft-baked garlic sticks, and meatball sandwich on a grilled Italian bread roll.

Top it off with a cream puff sundae. It even includes local ice cream!


La Dolce Vita

17546 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48203
Phone: 313-865-0331
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La Dolce Vita is a classy patio restaurant near Palmer Park.

The locals claim it’s the best patio spot in the city, and the environment is upscale and romantic with old-world Italian fare.

They have fresh, local ingredients, regional Italian cuisine, and bottomless mimosa specials during Sunday brunch.

The restaurant has a dress code, and it’s a fun opportunity to dress up. Once you’ve found the proper attire, make a reservation and check out the menu.

I recommend the traditional lasagna, but the lobster ravioli with saffron is also fantastic.

Don’t forget to try the New York strip steak with gorgonzola sauce.


SheWolf Pastificio & Bar

438 Selden St, Detroit, MI 48201
Phone: 313-315-3992
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SheWolf Detroit is a trendy spot with contemporary Italian cuisine and wines.

It’s in Midtown, by the Old Miami music venue, and has Roman-inspired dishes.

The vibe is sophisticated, and the bar has great signature cocktails. Make sure to book a reservation, and get ready to enjoy this unique restaurant and bar.

I like the Francobolli, a pasta dish with ricotta and corn filling.

The Polenta Fritte is also excellent, and it has ramps and crisply cooked corn polenta.

Try the vegan gelato for dessert.

It’s a traditional Italian dessert with fresh strawberries and chopped pistachios. Or, try the olive oil cake with blueberries.


El Barzon

3710 Junction Ave, Detroit, MI 48210
Phone: 313-894-2070
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El Barzon has fusion cuisine with Italian and Mexican traditions. It has an intimate, romantic atmosphere, and you can dine or order takeout.

The restaurant is in the Michigan-Martin district, off the Michigan Ave highway.

James Beard-nominated chef Noberto Garita presides over the kitchen.

Start with a hot appetizer like the Pulpo al Ajillo, an octopus dish with chili, garlic, and Italian white wine.

I like the Mexican-Italian Chiles Rellenos with cheese and tomato sauce.

Order ravioli with handmade pasta, butter, sage, and ricotta, or try the sauteed spaghetti with Italian bacon and Pecorino cheese. Enjoy a side of parmesan asparagus.


Gonellas Foods

295 Oakwood, Detroit, MI 48217
Phone: 313-841-3500
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Gonellas Foods is the perfect place for a quick, casual bite. It’s in Oakwood, across from the river, and it’s been in Detroit for over 75 years.

Veterans love this spot, and it’s a restaurant in touch with the community.

Order casual Italian cuisine like sub sandwiches, enjoy hearty comfort food, and taste decadent desserts.

Try authentic Italian meats like hard salami, smoked ham, and Mortadella. I recommend the 8-layer meat sandwich.

You can personalize your sub and top it with your favorite meats, vegetables, and cheeses. I always enjoy the homemade dressing, and it’s a favorite with the locals.


Mario’s Restaurant

4222 2nd Ave, Detroit, MI 48201
Phone: 313-832-1616
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Mario’s is a retro eatery that’s been in Detroit since 1948.

It has authentic old-school vibes, a formal atmosphere, and a tuxedoed staff, and the cuisine is upscale Italian with an extensive drinks menu.

The restaurant is in Midtown, so it’s perfect if you’re seeing local sights like the nearby Detroit Design Center.

This supper club is a fantastic way to end a day, especially if you order a house cognac.

I like the house cheese and charcuterie board with a macadamia nut espresso.

Try the mushroom ravioli with house sauce or the layered ricotta lasagna with marinara or bolognese.


Ottava Via

1400 Michigan Ave, Detroit, MI 48216
Phone: 313-962-5500
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Ottava Via is a hip restaurant in Corktown, Detroit. The cuisine is traditional Italian with old-school pasta, and the atmosphere is romantic and cozy.

Sit around the fireplace and sip wine, or grab a pizza to go.

The restaurant has antique decor, and it’s in a rustic brick building that has fantastic photo opportunities.

I like to order a selection of small plates to share with my table. Try the Tuscan potatoes with chili and oregano, calamari with lemon aioli, and garlic-shallot shrimp.

The Rucolina pizza is the best. The chefs load it with Serrano ham, aged provolone, and arugula.


San Morello

1400 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48226
Phone: 313-209-4700
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San Morello is a trendy, hip restaurant with seasonal Italian cuisine.

Chef Andrew Carmellini cooks wood-fired pizzas, homemade pasta, and traditional Italian dishes, and the restaurant has a local, neighborhood feel.

This stylish eatery is in the Hudson Quarter, near the city’s heart.

It has an ideal location for sightseers who want to spend a day touring Downtown Detroit and end at a cozy Italian restaurant.

I recommend the Sicilian wood-fired pizza. It has fresh Provolone cheese, pistachio pesto, and savory fennel sausage.

Also, try the homemade risotto, sea scallops with peas, and grilled trout with Agrumato olive oil and fennel.


Supino Pizzeria

2457 Russell St, Detroit, MI 48207
Phone: 313-567-7879
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Visit Supino Pizzeria in the Eastern Market district. It’s a no-frills joint with thin-crust pizza and creative cuisine.

The pizza restaurant is casual, cozy, and perfect for satisfying families or large groups. You can order pizza with innovative toppings like egg, smoked ham, or feta.

Mix things up and try a white pizza like the Smokey with ricotta, ham, and gouda.

My favorite is the San Gennaro pizza, a thin-crust pie with onions, Italian sausage, and red bell peppers roasted to perfection.

Also, try the vegetarian Funghi pizza with mushrooms, fresh mozzarella, and herbs. Finish with a decadent chocolate cannoli.


Amore da Roma

3401 Riopelle St, Detroit, MI 48207
Phone: 313-831-5940
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Head down to the Eastern Market district and eat at Amore da Roma, a historic restaurant with Italian cafe cuisine.

It’s the oldest Italian restaurant in the city and has old-school decor and vintage vibes. Start with Italian sausage with onions and peppers fresh off the grill.

Top a Roma salad with broiled chicken and cheese, or try the daily soup.

I like the potato Gnocchi dumplings, but the meat Tortellini is also delicious.

Make sure to try a Caprese sandwich with heirloom tomatoes, basil pesto, and grilled onions before leaving.

I also order a lot of garlic cheese bread to share!


Andiamo Detroit Riverfront

400 Renaissance Center A-03, Detroit, MI 48243
Phone: 313-567-6700
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Andiamo is a waterfront restaurant a few streets away from Downtown Detroit.

It faces the Detroit River, near the Canadian border, and it’s a restaurant with beautiful river views.

Order a roasted portobello mushroom with Andiamo dip sauce, or try a plate of Italian rice balls with risotto, Mozzarella cheese filling, tomato sauce, and fresh basil pesto.

I like the Brodo di Pollo, an herbed chicken broth with root vegetables and gooey cheese tortellini.

Order a seasonal dish and try the Frutti di Mare, a fruit of the sea pasta.

It has white wine, tomatoes, and fresh seafood like pan-seared scallops, calamari, and shrimp.


Bacco Ristorante

29410 Northwestern Hwy, Southfield, MI 48034
Phone: 248-356-6600
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Try handcrafted Italian cuisine at Bacco Ristorante, a swanky spot with a cozy dining atmosphere.

The restaurant is in Southfield, so it’s perfect if you’re traveling on the northeast side of Detroit.

Get a reservation or call for delivery, and enjoy a hearty pasta dish or a grass-fed burger. I love the grilled lamb chops with asparagus and crispy potatoes.

Remember to try the fan-favorite wild mushroom ragu and the black linguine with clams and garlic. The Italian coffee is fantastic, and so is the wine selection.

Go for an Italian classic for dessert and order an assortment of house-made gelato.


Cafe Nini

98 Kercheval Ave, Grosse Pointe Farms, MI 48230
Phone: 313-308-3120
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Drive up to Grosse Pointe Farms in northeast Detroit and enjoy Neapolitan-style pizza at Cafe Nini.

The restaurant is upscale with a romantic atmosphere, and it’s a perfect place for dessert and coffee with friends.

It’s on Kercheval Ave, a few streets from Lake St. Clair, and you can enjoy live performances if you visit on Friday nights.

I like to pair a craft beer with a Margherita pizza. Try a Caesar salad with chicken and bleu cheese, or go for a fresh salmon filet.

I always enjoy the Gnocchi di Patate plate, which includes potato dumplings and meat sauce.


Final Thoughts

A trip to Detroit wouldn’t be complete without going to the Italian restaurants. I love the handmade pasta, family-owned eateries, and recipes chefs have been cooking for generations.

There’s something for everyone in the best Italian restaurants in Detroit, from cheesy Detroit-style pizzas to classy calamari starter plates.

If you’re looking for more of a breakfast spot instead, check out these amazing places Detroit has to offer!

Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you leave us a comment, and we’ll check it out!


Best Italian Restaurants in Detroit

  1. Giovanni’s Ristorante
  2. PizzaPapalis
  3. Buddy’s Pizza
  4. La Dolce Vita
  5. SheWolf Pastificio & Bar
  6. El Barzon
  7. Gonellas Foods
  8. Mario’s Restaurant
  9. Ottava Via
  10. San Morello
  11. Supino Pizzeria
  12. Amore da Roma
  13. Andiamo Detroit Riverfront
  14. Bacco Ristorante
  15. Cafe Nini

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Written by Rocco Smith

Rocco is a recent graduate of Florida State University with a Bachelorโ€™s in Editing, Writing, and Media. With seven yearsโ€™ experience in the restaurant industry as a cook, server, bartender, and more, he is deeply passionate about intertwining his fondness for food with his love of language.