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“A great little Italian restaurant”

Albona Ristorante Istriano
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Ranked #224 of 5,839 Restaurants in San Francisco
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $31 - $40
Cuisines: European, Italian, Seafood, Central European
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Special occasions, Romantic
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighborhood: North Beach / Telegraph Hill
Cross street: Taylor & Mason Sts.
Transit: Last stop of the Powell-Mason Cable Car Line at Taylor and Francisco Sts. (1/2 a block away). No. 30 Bus stops at Columbus Ave. and Francisco St. (1 & 1/2 blocks).
Reviewed May 14, 2013 via mobile

My wife & I dined here on our first night in SF after we did the big bus co night tour (4 blocks away from where the tour ends).

I became a little hesitant with the booking after reading the negative reviews but glad we dined here in the end as the food was fantastic.

I had the mushroom risotto and my wife had the 3 cheese ravioli. Both dishes were delicious and portions were great. The service was fantastic and even though we didn't order dessert, mainly because we were so satisfied after the mains, we were treated to a complimentary chocolate mousse with an ameretto topping. Now I'm no fan of chocolate. I actually dislike it. But this was incredibly tasty and I finished it all!

The service was personal, friendly, attentive and polite. The food was delicious and great portions. The restaurant had a good ambience although this died down quickly as afterall it was a Monday night and we got to the restaurant at 9.15pm.

I found this an overall excellent dining experience and love the fact the restaurant is small and very personal.

So in summary, it's as good as it is made out to be on TA!

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Thank Jagdip S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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235 - 239 of 445 reviews

Reviewed May 13, 2013 via mobile

My wife and I went to Albona for our anniversary and after reading all the reviews, we had high expectations. And this place did not disappoint! The food was terrific and the service was outstanding. The waiters gave us complimentary prosecco to start our meal and when the dessert menu came out, I was stuck between tiramisu (which is my favorite) and the chocolate flan which is their best selling dessert. So what did the waiter do, he brought both at no extra charge and topped it off with complimentary dessert wine. We had a great meal and a great time and will definitely go back the next time we are in SF!

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Thank Anthony R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 11, 2013

We went to Albona Ristorante Istriano for a birthday dinner and it was an amazing experience. The owner, Sam, greeted us personally and when he learned that it was my birthday, he gave each of us a glass of special champagne to enjoy.

The meal itself was delicious. Everything from the appetizer (squid stuffed with fish) to the special of the day (Chinook Salmon) to the Braised Veal Shank was outstanding! For dessert, Sam gave us each a tiramisu with birthday candle. We also ordered their famous Bonet (chocolate flan) and strawberry sorbet. Sam's wife is also the Pastry Chef, so all of the desserts are homemade.

The service was outstanding. Sam is the epitome of a gracious and generous host who strives to provide the best service possible. Like he said, "The customer is always right!"

The restaurant is fairly small, so reservations are a must if you don't want to wait a long time. Parking can also be a challenge, so plan accordingly. Overall, I would highly recommend this restaurant.

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Thank SgtBuffy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 10, 2013

Had a reasonable dinner here with some friends. The rave reviews had me expecting a lot.

The food is good (at least a 4/5) but given the relatively high prices ($40 per person for 1-2 courses and a drink), I had expected better. The waiter who served us was also a quite unfriendly. I have a pretty thick skin and don't expect much with service, but was taken aback by how rude the waiter was with us at one point.

All in all - good (but not amazing) food, nice ambiance, average value and poor service.

In a city with such amazing food options, can't see myself going back here.

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Thank jerrywesterby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 10, 2013

After reading all the reviews my husband and I thought this was a must for Italian in SF. We like small restaurants with amazing food and are not concerned about ambiance. As others have said this is a small unassuming restaurant. We had the asparagus soup, gnocchi, mushroom risotto and the veal shank. It was all ok. Nothing of a wow factor. We will not go back. There are so many amazing restaurants in SF this for us was not one.

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Thank Mary Jo A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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