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“Good food and eager service”

Mama Teresa's Ristorante Italiano
Cuisines: Italian
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
San Diego, California
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
42 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Good food and eager service”
Reviewed January 7, 2012

Food: On our first visit to this newish Poway restaurant we made rather unadventurous choices. We started by sharing a platter of calamari fritti, a huge portion of very tender morsels of little squiddies in a well-seasoned and crispy batter. Faultless. Then I had the cheese ravioli, which was delicious, and my husband had penne with a creamy sausage sauce, equally fine. The portions are generous and we left with next day's lunch neatly boxed up. The dessert menu looked great, and I'd like to go back to sample the desserts some time.

Wine: The list is limited to four decent and well-priced Italian reds and the same for the whites. I had a split of Prosecco which gave me one-and-a-half glasses, just right, for me, to go with dinner.

Service: Very friendly and helpful. If anything, just a tad too enthusiastic - our waitress tended to interrupt our conversations in her eagerness to be assured that we thought the food 'amazing'. (We didn't, although it was certainly very good.)

Location and ambience: This is where it gets difficult. The location is certainly convenient, and if/when the old Dixieline building is occupied they will probably benefit from more traffic. The room could do with a bit of softening and dressing-up in the way of decor, as at present it is just a rectangular space with some art on the walls and pretty basic furniture - hardish chairs and plastic tablecloths. If you're looking for a place to take someone on a romantic date, this probably isn't it. The food is good, but my concern is that for the prices they are charging (entrees go up to about $20, if I remember aright) the clientele will expect rather more in the way of ambience.

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

65 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    42
    15
    7
    0
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
San Diego, California
1 review
“Just like being in Old Napoli”
Reviewed November 23, 2011

My dinner at Mamma Teresa's on Poway Rd (in the Petco shopping center) transported me back to my journies through Venice and Reggio Emilia, Italy. Teresa has truly brought the magic of Italian cooking to Poway for all to enjoy. Each course was absolutely delicious, from the Insalata Caprese with garden fresh basil (the absolute best I have ever had outside of Italy), to the homemade sauces and meatballs and on to Teresa's specialities - her desserts. Try the cannelloni, and tiramisu - pure heaven.
Don't miss this one! La Dolce Vita for sure!
I will be definitely be back with lots of friends!

  • Visited November 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank sallyt13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“I was disappointed after hearing such great things.”
Reviewed November 21, 2011

We decided to give Mamma Teresa a visit on a Saturday evening. The restaurant is located in a shopping strip and is very small. Local art hangs on the walls and plastic covers are on the tables just like the plastic that covered grandma's sofa! We didn't have reservations but it wasn't a problem because it was early. We were seated quickly but I noticed Reserved signs on some of the tables so I imagine
tables go fast later in the evening. A basket of bread, olive oil for dipping and water were brought to the table. The bread didn't seem like homemade. Service was extremely slow. Almost painful. We ordered a large salad Caprese to share, Lasagna and Penne
Arriabiata. The salad was very disappointing because the tomatoes weren't
red and ripe. There wasn't much Basil in the salad either. My Lasagna
arrived and was a generous portion but it was runny with too much cheese.
My husband said his Penne pasta was just average and not the homemade
pasta taste he was expecting. After hearing such rave reviews about the
delicious, authentic Italian cooking we wondered if we had just made poor
choices. I think we'll wait a few months and go back to see if things improve.
Alex and Teresa are lovely people but need to focus on ramping things up.
Getting rid of the plastic covering on the tables would help greatly. Red checked table cloths would help warm things up.

  • Visited November 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Jean92064
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level 6 Contributor
202 reviews
123 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“outstanding all around”
Reviewed November 11, 2011

its actually spelled MAMMA TERESA to the person who originated this review. this place is all around GREAT! we heard from our friends about this little, authentic gem in Poway. even the people that work there are authentic Italians! i ordered the penne mamma teresa (penne pasta in a sausage cream sauce), my husband ordered the chicken parmigiana, and my parents both ordered the Veal. all of our meals were fantastic!!! we also split an antipasto salad which was also delicious. great prices and great food has turned this place into my new hidden favorite spot!

  • Visited November 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank lilsnipper102
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Poway, California
Level 5 Contributor
53 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Authentic Italian food”
Reviewed August 10, 2011

Freshly made by Chef Teresa as you wait. Nice staff, good food, that's going to bring me back!

  • Visited July 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Patrimanch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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