A decade ago you’d be hard pressed to find even a handful of restaurants serving great Italian fare in Seattle, but that has all changed. Now you can find great Italian bites from one end of the city to the other ranging from meatball sandwiches and pizza pies to elegant multi-course tasting menus with wine pairings. And the best of the best are making their own fresh pasta, (sometimes they’ve designed their environments so you can watch) sauces and desserts. So bring you’re appetite and let’s head out to the Best Italian Restaurants in Seattle.
1531 14th Ave.
Seattle, WA 98122
(206) 251-7673

Situated in Seattle’s hip Capitol Hill neighborhood, Spinasse has been serving up stellar  northern Italian cuisine for over six years out of a pair of lovely rustic rooms. The team sources most of it’s ingredients locally and knows just how to put them to work in the dozen and a half antipastis, pastas, risottos, roasted meat and fish plates and vegetable side dishes, Start with a glass of lillet rose or a negroni and don’t ‘t miss the hand-cut egg pasta with butter and fried sage, the English pea risotto,  or the savory flan. And save room for dessert–you’ll be glad you did!

Cafe Juanita (Photo Credit, Jenise Silva)

Cafe Juanita
926 12th Ave.
Seattle, WA 98122
(425) 823-1505

After July you may visit them at:
9702 NE 120th Place
Kirkland, WA 98034
(425) 823-1505

For 15 years Chef Holly Smith of Cafe Juanita has been serving up some of the best Italian fare not just in the region, but in the entire country. Her innovative and modern Northern Italian food has earned her numerous nods from the James Beard Foundation, and with just cause. Enjoying a leisurely evening at Cafe Juanita means you’ll have the opportunity to partake in such stunning and flavorful dishes including tajarin with sturgeon caviar, wagyu carne cruda with lardo crostini, smoked sablefish with steelhead roe and if you are very lucky braised rabbit with porcini wrapped in house made pancetta.

Altura (Photo Credit, Jenise Silva)

617 Broadway E.
Seattle, WA 98102
(206) 402-6749

Altura (which in Italian means both “height” and “profound depth”), occupies a candlelit space on North Broadway. Chef/owner Nathan Lockwood serves up over a dozen beautiful appetizers, pastas and mains, which are presented a la carte and as selections in the various multi-course menus you can configure on your own. But if you are feeling adventurous, let the kitchen take charge by ordering the tasting menu. Simply let the server know of any dietary restrictions and sit back and relax as up to five main plates interspersed with small bites and snacks are ushered to your table by the more than capable servers. The menu changes weekly, but some standouts have included scallops with fennel pollen and grilled radicchio and fennel; and muscovy duck with red cabbage and roasted turnip.

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Il Corvo
217 James St.
Seattle WA, 98104
(206) 538-0999

Mike Easton’s second incarnation of the order-at-the-counter, lunch only pasta popup shop is still going strong.  Arrive early (by 11 a.m.), as the line frequently runs out the door as fans of fresh, affordable Italian fare flock to this pint sized eatery tucked in historic Pioneer Square. Go with friends so you can try everything, because the menu changes daily and you won’t want to regret not getting to try that pasta special everyone will still be raving about months from now.  And be sure not to skip the salads and dessert, as they shine as brightly as the marquis pasta. Each day you can expect three to five plates all made from pasta cut, extruded, or hand formed in house that morning. To let devotees know what’s fresh on any given day, Easton posts photos and descriptions on its website.

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Jenise Silva is a freelance writer in Seattle who has studied culinary, visual and performing arts. She penned the financial planning guide Women & Money, and has been writing about food and the arts for a number of years. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.