Il Fornaio

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Manhattan Beach, California

Il Fornaio Manhattan Beach Reviews

dlazzaro dlazzaro
47 reviews
Apr 18, 2006
I went to Il Fornaio for Easter dinner with some family and friends, including two older cousins I hardly ever see. All-in-all, it was a great experience, with both the company and the food being good.Il Fornaio is a bit of a paradox for me, because it is a chain-restaurant, but it is a *good* chain-restaurant. Being of Italian ancestry, I think I know good Italian food when I taste it, and let me tell you, this is some of the best I have ever had, including my experiences in Italy.Admittedly, the fare at Il Fornaio is not as good as the food served by a real Italian grandma, but it comes surprisingly close.I tried a number of dishes, including their Bistecca Fiorentina (which is a porterhouse cut), gnocci with bologenese sauce, pizza, and chicken.The porterhouse steak was divine. It was cooked on the rare side (as ordered) but seared properly. It had flavor, juice, and the proper tenderness. The gnocci were equally excellent, very light, but still substantial, really perfect in their texture. They normall come in a cream sauce, but I like meat sauce, and I was extremely impressed by the bologenese. It was not too acidic, it had a lot of meat, and it was served proportionally to the pasta.The pizza was not world-class, but nothing to complain about. It was served in Southern-Italian thin style, and was not drowned in cheese or sauce.Anyone who likes Italian food and can find one of these restaurants nearby definitely should give it a try.The only down side was the price – the steak was $29!(This was at the Manhatten Beach, CA location)
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