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“Great food and service, sit on deck if possible” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Va Bene Caffe

Va Bene Caffe
734 East Superior St, Duluth, MN 55802
218-722-1518
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Ranked #4 of 238 Restaurants in Duluth
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Italian
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special occasions, Business meetings, Scenic view
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast, Late Night, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Seating, Takeout, Waitstaff
Level Contributor
19 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great food and service, sit on deck if possible”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2013 via mobile

We wanted a nicer restaurant to eat dinner at during our stay in Duluth, and VA Bene was perfect for that! Per the recommendations on trip advisor, we asked for seating on the lower deck. While the upper part of the restaurant was crowded, the downstairs was barely occupied on a Wednesday night. The view was absolutely spectacular! It is a great view of Lake Superior and the lift bridge, and was very quiet and relaxing. Our waitress was very friendly and as it was our first time, gave us lots of great recommendations. The gnocchi was excellent, as was the penne pasta with sausage (had customizable spiciness which was great) and the number 18 (angel hair pasta with tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, and pine nuts). I also had a mixed salad which was very good as well. The only thing that was disappointing to us was the "Noce e pera" (penne with a cream sauce, pears, walnuts, and spinach). It had rave reviews on tripadvisor and according to our waitress was one of the restaurants most popular dishes, but fell flat. It wasn't hot and was just kind of goopy and blah. We saw the gelato on the way out but were stuffed from our food so we returned the next day in the afternoon. The restaurant was quiet and the gentleman who helped us was very kind and patient as we took for ever to decide what flavors to try. The mint chip, sea salt caramel, and white chocolate raspberry were all superb! If you are looking for a nicer Italian restaurant in Duluth or even just a dish of gelato, this is the place to go!

  • Visited September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Grape452
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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359 reviews from our community

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Saint Paul, Minnesota
Level Contributor
25 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Excellent food.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013

We visit the folks at Va Bene each time we visit Duluth. We were able to sit on the balcony in the sunshine and enjoy wonderful views of the lake and the Lift Bridge while we had a fabulous lunch. The service was great and the food did not disappoint.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Peg8280
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Becker, Minnesota
Level Contributor
145 reviews
94 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
“Great food with beautiful view!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013 via mobile

Stopped in on a Tuesday at 5 on the way back from Lutsen after checking out reviews on tripadvisor. We sat in the grotto with 3 kids. Food was excellent and so was the view. One kid was feeling a little car sick and the manager gave him some sprite as soon as we walked in the door. Will go again next time I'm in Duluth!

  • Visited August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Noahelijastella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Moose Lake, Minnesota
Level Contributor
92 reviews
47 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Awesome martinis, good food, and great desserts!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013

This is a very cute-- but small-- place! We were here on a weeknight, and we did make a reservation, but we still did not get onto the lower deck with the views. But that, and difficult parking (we had to walk a ways), were my only complaints. We had awesome service and began by trying four different martinis, all of which were outstanding. The bruschetta was fine, as were our meals, but then came the Madame Navaronne cake for dessert-- oh my! If you love a decadent dessert (as I do!), you will not be disappointed. The cheesecake and gelato were also raved about by others, but I would return for the cake alone-- don't miss it!

  • Visited July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Food
Helpful?
Thank mooseltraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington, United States
Level Contributor
62 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Outstanding food, awesome location.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2013

Make a reservation, as this place is always busy, but for good reason. Ask for a table outside -- and, if possible, in the "Grotto" lower deck. There one has 180-degree views of Lake Superior in a quiet setting. The cuisine is fresh, healthy, and of "big-city" quality. Service is superb. You cannot do better in Duluth, and this place would compete anywhere.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Joe N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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