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“Traditional Italian Neighborhood Cafe in Aurora Highlands” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Cafe Italia I

Cafe Italia I
519 23RD St S, Arlington, VA 22202-2517
(703) 521-2565
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Ranked #203 of 693 Restaurants in Arlington
Cuisines: Italian
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Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Large groups, Doing business, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Jeferson Davis Hwy
Transit: ART-ARLINGTON TRANSIT The ART of getting around Arlington. ART operates within Arlington County, providing access to Metrorail and supplementing Metrobus with smaller, neighborhood-friendly vehicles. CommuterDirect.com.FAIRFAX CONNECTOR The Fairfax Connector bus system runs seven days a week.
Westwood Los Angeles County, California
Top Contributor
285 reviews 285 reviews
132 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 106 cities Reviews in 106 cities
115 helpful votes 115 helpful votes
“Traditional Italian Neighborhood Cafe in Aurora Highlands”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2014

This restaurant is sandwiched between a number of other cafes, serving various national foods, and across from the Portofino Italian restaurant, so you have a lot of alternate choices if you decide that you don't like the menu here. Access is very good, parking is somewhat of an issue, but there is a large parking garage around the corner next to the Radisson. The food here is definitely above average, the menu is reasonably varied, and at least for us, the service was very good. There is an outdoor terrace for outdoor dining when the weather permits. There are not that many tables, so it might be difficult to get a table promptly during peak periods. The decorative motif is dominated by large posters from the early 1900s. Suffice to say that the interior ambiance delivers a lot more than the external appearance of the cafe might suggest.

  • Visited March 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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140 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Texas
Top Contributor
167 reviews 167 reviews
83 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
“Good Italian Food_DvB”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2014

The menu and décor are quintessentially Italian food restaurant in a movie. The tablecloths and other decorations remind me of any Italian restaurant movie scene.

There isn't much to say unless you have never eaten at such a restaurant. The service on my visits has varied. On this most recent trip the server was a little slow, and I actually tipped the middle-aged busboy on the sly since he checked on our table most frequently. Water refills, silverware replacement, and so forth were handled by this gentleman. Our server also seemed a little annoyed that we didn't order wine or appetizers. He still got a tip since our group allowed the addition of the gratuity automatically. This is always a funny situation since, without fail, this mandatory amount is less than I planned to tip. Win for me!

The manager or owner is always very friendly so I'd go back. Even when walking this strip of restaurants to go somewhere else, if he is outside, he will greet us as though he recognizes us from previous trips. Also, the service is sometimes better.

The food is what you would expect. Several types of lasagna and pastas with numerous toppings. Eggplant dishes and calamari are staples of any such eatery. I have never been ill from the food, and just like this occasion, it was pleasing without inspiring awe. I think it is a good place for a group since the standard menu and seasonings could please most.

  • Visited March 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxford, MS
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
40 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“Good Neighborhood Spot”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2014

Neighborhood Italian Restaurant, close to the hotels in Crystal City. Great service and a good selection of wine. Good selection of Italian dishes and specials. I had the spaghetti with meatballs which was good, but I've had better. The sauce was a little watery and meatballs were just plain. My wife enjoyed her meal. Great bread. Small restaurant with good atmosphere.

  • Visited March 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Frankenmuth, Michigan
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“This place does it right”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2014

I love this place. Nice staff and good food. I had the Steak Marsala and it was very well done. The Marsala Sauce was excellent. I also had a caprese salad which was good and of course the bread was excellent. My waitress recognized me and she was outstanding as all the staff is here. Thanks Cafe Italia

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Spotswood, New Jersey
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Good meal and service”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2014 via mobile

We were in DC for the weekend and found this gem. It's a small intimate restaurant. We started out with a salad, crisp and fresh. I had the jumbo shrimp primavera. The sauce was flavorful and the portion plentiful. My boyfriend had the baked salmon pescatore. He said the sauce had just the right amount garlic so that it wasn't overwhelming. The wine selection was good. We skipped dessert because we were too full. We felt it was a good meal for a reasonable price.

Visited November 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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