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Lillian's Italian Kitchen

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1116 Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz, CA 95062-2106
831-425-2288
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Today
4:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Hours:
Mon - Thu 4:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Fri - Sat 4:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Dining options: Reservations, Seating, Takeout, Waitstaff

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 207 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 138
    Excellent
  • 55
    Very good
  • 9
    Average
  • 4
    Poor
  • 1
    Terrible
Rating summary
  • Food
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    4 of 5 stars
Feel like I'm back in South Philly!

Great food, great people, great atmosphere. It's a small and intimate place with only a handful of tables. There's nothing fancy, there's lots of noise and seating is rather cramped...having said that, I LOVE this restaurant. The food is awesome, the staff is incredibly hospitable, you can see... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 2 days ago
VETMANSHU
,
Santa Cruz, California
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207 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Santa Cruz, California
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

Great food, great people, great atmosphere. It's a small and intimate place with only a handful of tables. There's nothing fancy, there's lots of noise and seating is rather cramped...having said that, I LOVE this restaurant. The food is awesome, the staff is incredibly hospitable, you can see the kitchen and smell everything from your chairs. It's a great place... More 

Helpful?
Thank VETMANSHU
Santa Cruz, California
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Real authentic italian food! Haven't had a bad meal yet. Well worth the wait time to get in. Joe and his staff make sure you have a wonderful culinary experience everytime.

Helpful?
Thank Mary G
Santa Cruz, California
Level Contributor
34 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

The food is incredible. All of it. Everytime. Have the house Chianti. It's deep and robust. Make reservations. As soon as you can...days before if possible. It's that busy. A little secret...aside from the food my favorite thing about Lillian's is the typical Italian atmosphere...loud, happy and everything smells out of this world.

Helpful?
Thank CBeattie14
New Hampshire
Level Contributor
88 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2015

We finally got a reservation after two previous failed attempts and it was well worth it. My wife had a Beet Salad and a Side of Three Meatballs with Sunday Gravy. The Beet Salad was delicious with firm beets. The Meatballs were large and cooked perfectly with the Sunday Gravy that made the dish. I had the Shrimp Diavolo with... More 

Helpful?
Thank zippo46
Santa Cruz, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2015

The owner Joe and his staff are really friendly and easy going. But the jewel of this place is the food. The caprese salad is to die for air lum tomatoes with whipped mozzarella amazing better than amazing. Among other great dishes is Enocci with truffle oil the Sunday gravy. And if you are a big eater like me add... More 

Helpful?
Thank Kevin T
Santa Cruz, California
Level Contributor
22 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2015

Oh, my goodness. The last time I had Italian cuisine as good as this is when I was on the East coast. Lillian's provides that little Italy experience. The salads, soups and entrees are out of this world. Make sure you try the meatball sandwich for lunch. The Sunday sauce can't be beat!

Helpful?
Thank Santacruzin2u
St. Petersburg, Russia
Level Contributor
35 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2015

We went to this restaurant yesterday to celebrate the birthday of my friend. First of all it was Monday 4:30 pm and only a few tables were occupied. We ordered meatball pasta and something from the Special of the day. What I don't like in all this - we were pushed to order some salads and appetizers - which we... More 

Helpful?
Thank 49Jane
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2015

Lillian's has fantastic Italian! My husband kicks and screams all the way to Italian restaurants..I demanded Lillian's for my birthday, so he had no choice in the matter. I have been there a few times and new it was IMPERATIVE to make a reservation, the place is small and very busy. We were seated right away and the food was... More 

Helpful?
Thank Tesaandrews
Redondo Beach, California, United States
Level Contributor
10 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2015

I cannot recommend this place enough. She loved the romance, I enjoyed the food. I am not usually a fan of Gnocchi but the Filet and Gnocchi was one of the most amazing Italian dishes I have ever had. Get there early and enjoy!

Helpful?
Thank Nicholas J
oakhurst,ca
Level Contributor
18 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2015

was a bit loud, but the food, service was fantastic, price medium price great italian food, and canoli,

Helpful?
Thank klip126315

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Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 1116 Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz, CA 95062-2106
  • Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  Santa Cruz
  • Phone Number: 831-425-2288

Price and Cuisine

  • Cuisine: Italian

Restaurant Characteristics

  • Good for: Families with children
Open Hours
Monday
4:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Tuesday
4:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Wednesday
4:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Thursday
4:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Friday
4:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Saturday
4:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Lillian's Italian Kitchen and other visitors
2 questions
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1 month ago
oakhurst,ca

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Questions? Get answers from Lillian's Italian Kitchen staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?