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“Best restaurant in years!”

A Cena Ristorante y Enoteca
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Ranked #108 of 4,404 Restaurants in Portland
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Neighborhood: Sellwood - Moreland Improvement League
Cross street: SE Lambert St.
Transit: Several on 13th Street
Description: A Cena is Italian for come to supper. This is exactly what we are inviting you to do at A Cena Ristorante located right here in Portland. When you come to A Cena, you will instantly be transported to a small villa in Italy. We are committed to providing our guests with an experience that will not be quickly forgotten. At a Cena, we share a love for simply cooked meals enjoyed with friends and family. All of our dishes are made with fresh ingredients from local Portland area farmers. We also hand make all of our pastas and cured meats, and daily prepared breads. A Cena offers a robust, well-matched wine list for every meal along with a seasoned and personable staff. All of these elements combined allows us to offer our guests at a Cena a fine-dining experience with the comfort and warmth of an Italian country kitchen.
Reviewed June 29, 2012

We were blown away by this restaurant. From beginning to end, this was an awesome meal, the best in many years. I had the Roman artichokes, the Hand made Tuscan macaroni with lamb ragu, and the Tiramisu. My companion had the grilled octopus with farro, the Ricotta and goat cheese gnocchi, and the Affogato (gelato, espresso, Chocolate sauce). We shared a plate of olives and a lovely bottle of Tuscan wine, a 2009 Rosso di Montalcino. We finished the meal with 2 glasses of house-made limoncello liquor.

Every component of the meal was among the best we have ever experienced. This restaurant manages to bring out the intrinsic flavor of the ingredients. The lamb ragu was laden with lamb flavor, the grilling of the octopus brought out the essence of the octopus. Every item was prepared perfectly. The limoncello had an intense lemon bouquet and flavor.

Portions were large; half portions of the pasta were more than sufficient. Prices were moderate. Service was responsive and intelligent.

The place fills up between 7 and 7:30. Our 6:15 reservation got us a good table and good service.

We spent a week in Lucca two years ago. This restaurant is superior to any restaurant we visited in Lucca.

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1  Thank Snowmann42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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165 - 169 of 196 reviews

Reviewed June 22, 2012

Submitting another review in this case may be gilding the lilly, but I am impelled to document an outstanding dining experience at this lovely restaurant in Portland's Sellwood neighborhood. At a time of when Italian restaurants proliferate--good, bad and indifferent--A Cena truly stands out. Curbside parking is easy enough; the atmosphere is relaxed; and the owner and waiters are splendid advisors of menu choices. My friends and I picked an excellent Tuscan wine from a quality list, and can vouch for the tastefulness of the Romano salad and lobster agnolotti. The dessert affogato (vanilla gelato, chocolate sauce, shot of espresso, pizelles) was excellent.

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1  Thank profmed
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 17, 2012

After a long drought of just mediocre restaurants all over the US I came upon A Cena Ristorante y Enoteca. I listened to our waiter, who was great, and ordered a lobster ravioli dish that may be one of the best dishes I have ever eaten.

Sorry gotta go!

Springer out!

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1  Thank mimitu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 17, 2012

My wife and I had been meaning to come here, and we finally had a chance to have lunch on a Tuesday afternoon.

We were extremely impressed by the taste and preparation of the food. My wife had a lamb panini, and I had a pasta dish with salsiccia. Both were excellent, some of the best dishes we have ever had at lunch. The wine list by the glass was reasonably priced and we were very pleased by both our nebbiolo and Barbera selections.

The service was equally fine; just the right blend of solicitousness and respect for privacy.

We had not planned on dessert, but my wife ordered the tiramasou. If you order it, just get one for the two of you.....it was a VERY generous portion, and again, a marvelous dish.

We'll be back, for dinner next time.......

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Thank rcftommay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 6, 2012

We have been to A Cena twice. Both times the food has been good, service is friendly, nice atmosphere. My issue is that it is expensive and for how expensive it is the food should be amazing but it's not. Down the street is Portofino, same cost, more intimate and really great food.

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1  Thank mmoc65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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