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“Best Italian Around!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Harley's Italian Bistro - CLOSED

Harley's Italian Bistro
Price range: $11 - $32
Cuisines: Pizza, Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Off-Street Parking, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Wine and Beer
Description: At Harley's Italian Bistro, we take great pride in serving only the freshest ingredients and sourcing our products from local businesses whenever possible. We often can be seen shopping at local farmer's markets for our vegetables, our sausage is sourced from family-owned Schreiner's Sausage, we pick out cheeses and Italian meats from local delicatessens, our green tea is sourced from our neighbor, The Green Goddess Herb Store, and we often feature other local businesses and suppliers on a seasonal basis. All of our sauces are made fresh daily in small batches and each dish is made from scratch. We value the tradition of a true Italian dining experience, and as a result you will never feel rushed in our little bistro. In fact, we invite you to linger and enjoy your company and the ambiance while allowing us the time to artfully prepare your meal.
Phoenix, Arizona
Level Contributor
20 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Best Italian Around!!”
Reviewed January 23, 2013

I LOVE this place. I have never had a meal here I did not like. They bring fresh bread and oil to your table, which is hard not to fill up on before your meal comes. But save room. The lunch portions are huge and I'm not a big eater so I usually have two meals out of it. My favorite is the Salsiccie Alla Vodka, but everything I have tried on the menu I have loved.

Recent remodel has helped open up the place. Service used to be pretty slow for a lunch hour, but the last time I was there the service was fantastic. Hands down the best Italian restaurant in this area.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Nikki H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

38 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    19
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    5
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Colorado
Level Contributor
21 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“The best Italian food I've ever had”
Reviewed January 20, 2013

The wife, kids (13 and 15) and I were visiting Phoenix when trip advisor spurred our visit to this restaurant. In short the experience was fabulous and, for most of us, the best Italian food we'd ever eaten. My wife and in-laws are Italian, and we've had our share of chain and solo Italian restaurant fare before, so we are reasonably educated consumers of this product. The place is in a most uncharacteristic neighborhood, but for me, that adds to the experience (It's accross the street from the Wag'n Wash, a doggie grooming shop...awesome!) We were seated quickly in spite of no reservation after arriving @ 8:30 on a saturday, amidst a bustling if not noisy setting with funky decor including for-sale art created by troubled children. Definitely different but stimulating and not off-putting. The service was attentive, smiling and interested, but not pressured, hurried or annoyed by our presence, all of which help me enjoy the experience. Overall, the food was fabulous...I don't think anything comes out of a freezer or can. Read on their website how they make their own marinara, a wholly believable account once you taste it. Someone in your party MUST have something with marinara to appreciate it, and I will never fali to order the mozzarella in carozza, an appetizer dish from another planet. Unbelievably good! And normally I stay away from mozzeralla as an appetizer, having been jaded by too many mozzarella sticks from my kids' younger years. It was so good that we asked for extra bread to sop up the last drops of the marinara. The salads were great, well-sized and fresh. The entrees were great, mine was the best with apologies to my kids and wife. I had the good fortune of choosing the tenderloin in gorgonzola served with fetuccini alfredo. It was the best pasta dish I'd ever eaten. The taste of the gorgonzola mixed with the texture of the tenderloin and smoothness of fettucini was unbelievably good. I kept wondering,"how'd they make it taste so good?" My son had the lasagna and my daughter had penne with sausage, and they were both likewise wowed. Normally we don't order dessert, but everything had been so great we splurged a bit and got the chocolate lava cake and a chocolate covered cannoli..both very good caps to an otherwise awesome meal. We also enjoyed a great $25 bottle of Italian wine recommended by the server, almost forgot about that. Delicious. How can I find an excuse to go back soon????

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank MrHilarious
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dearborn Heights, Michigan
Level Contributor
197 reviews
115 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 177 helpful votes
“Old Time Recipes Still Good Today”
Reviewed December 28, 2012 via mobile

We were looking for a nice quiet spot for dinner close to our hotel and saw 3 great reviews for Harley's Italian Bistro and thought we would give it a try. The restaurant originally opened in 1950 and still uses many of the same recipes from the original owner. The restaurant is nondescript from the outside and a little dated on the inside but the food is why you come and we were not disappointed. We were greeted at the door by a very friendly waitress and she gave us a choice of tables. It wasn't too busy when we arrived (around 7:00 pm) but there seemed to be several families and a few couples dining. Our waitress, Stacey, brought us bread and water and there was an herb infused olive oil on the table for dipping. She offered us butter but there was no need as the dipping oil was excellent. We started with an antipasto plate which included prosciutto, salami, soppressata, black and green olives, block parmesan cheese, almonds and fresh mozzarella cheese. With the bread it was almost enough for our meal but we had already ordered our meals. My wife had the Pollo Piccata which was thinly pounded chicken breast sauteed in butter and white wine lemon caper sauce served with fettuccine Alfredo. I had the baked ravioli which you can get with either a meat filling or a cheese filling, I opted for the meat filling as it already had mozzarella cheese baked on top. Both dishes were excellent and did not disappoint. There are many options on the menu including brick oven baked pizza, salads, appetizers, your typical pasta offerings, both meat, fish and seafood dishes as well as hamburgers and mac and cheese. They even have a limited child's menu. They also have a selection of beers and mixed drinks as well as desserts. We had a good portion of our meal left over and had we not been staying at a hotel, would certainly have taken it home to enjoy as another meal. We talked to Stacey during the meal and found out she spent 5 years in Auburn Hills, MI not too far from where we live. She gave us some ideas for things to do and see while we were in the Phoenix area. We really appreciated a locals suggestions on things to do. As we were so stuffed from dinner, we had to pass on dessert but Stacey brought us cannolis to take home for a treat later. She really thought we should have an opportunity to try them. We really appreciated the gesture and felt more like we were in someone's home as a guest rather than in a restaurant. We would definitely recommend this restaurant for anyone looking for a good Italian meal and some friendly conversation. We will definitely return to this establishment on future visits.

Helpful?
1 Thank Ronald Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Harley B, Owner at Harley's Italian Bistro, responded to this review, January 6, 2013
Thank you so much for dining with us and for choosing to spend your New Year's Eve with us as well! You both were a delight and it was a pleasure getting to know you. I hope you will visit us again if you are ever in the Phoenix area. And, it is always fun to meet some fellow Midwesterners!
P.S. I am glad your trip to Phoenix included a Michigan St. win!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Phoenix, Arizona, United States
Level Contributor
51 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Great Hidden Gem”
Reviewed December 11, 2012

This isn't the greatest looking building on not the greatest looking street. But once you get beyond the looks the place is amazing homemade Italian. Really good food and a really good atmosphere. Always a good place to visit for some wine and a nice dinner.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Andrew B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Harley B, Owner at Harley's Italian Bistro, responded to this review, January 6, 2013
Thank you very much for taking the time to post a review on our bistro. We rely heavily on word of mouth and appreciate the kind words. We look forward to continuing to provide excellent food and service to you and welcome to the Harley's family!
Ciao!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Phoenix, Arizona, United States
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Always a treat”
Reviewed September 29, 2012

As a Phoenix native, and someone who has eaten at this restaurant numerous times, I will always recommend it to others, especially out of town guests. Excellent, excellent food, and the wait staff are friendly, some of which are even former employees from back when it was "Livia's". I really like the ambiance and appreciate how quiet and tranquil it is too. If you consider yourself an Italian food conniseur, you have to eat at HARLEY'S.

  • Visited September 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Jen L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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