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Lasagna is just one of the old school pasta dishes on the menu at Dirty Rascal.
Old-school lasagna.
Dirty Rascal

Italian Restaurants Where Pasta Reigns Supreme in Atlanta

From cacio e pepe to lasagna to spaghetti bolognese to penne alla vodka

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Old-school lasagna.
| Dirty Rascal

From spaghetti and tagliatelle to orecchiette and farfalle, there are days when nothing satisfies more than a heaping bowl of pasta paired with a glass of red wine or crisp prosecco. Atlanta’s Italian restaurants run the gamut, too, from neighborhood trattorias and comforting red sauce joints to Italian markets and elegant destination ristorantes. Here are just a few Italian restaurants to check out around Atlanta where pasta reigns supreme.

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Piastra Restaurant

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Piastra is a family-owned and operated Italian restaurant located on Marietta’s historic town square. The old school pasta dishes on the menu here are all made fresh using local and non-GMO ingredients. Order the classic tagliatelle vongole with little neck clams tossed in white wine and garlic.

Toscano Ristorante Italiano

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This Tuscan-style bistro serves old-school Italian dishes and pastas at Atlantic Station, like bucatini carbonara, penne alla vodka, and taglierini bolegnese, along with entrees of chicken marsala, eggplant parmigiana, and veal picatta. There’s pizza here, too. Expect cocktails such as the Negroni and Aperol spritz from the bar and a list of mostly Italian wines by the bottle and glass.

La Grotta Ristorante

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La Grotta is a beloved Atlanta classic. This is white tablecloth, fine dining Italian complete with a secret garden right off of busy Peachtree Road in Buckhead. Come here for decadent pasta dishes like sacchetti (“beggar’s purses”) stuffed with fontina and black truffles dressed in marasala wine sauce or pappardelle with lobster and shallots in a rosemary-white wine cream sauce. Jackets are suggested, ties are optional. In other words, don’t wear jeans and a t-shirt here. Reservations highly encouraged.

Lyla Lila

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Chef Craig Richards describes the food at his Midtown restaurant, Lyla Lila, as “Italian in spirit and technique,” but with an “expanded pantry” featuring Georgia grown ingredients. The menu spotlights flavors and dishes found throughout Italy and southern Spain, and offers several of Richards’ handmade pastas and risottos. Reservations highly encouraged; especially for evenings when shows are taking place at the nearby Fox Theatre.

Tre Vele

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Mission and Market chef Ian Winslade and brothers Ryan and Jonathan Akly opened this Italian restaurant and market at the City Walk complex in 2021. Billed as an all-day dining establishment, Tre Vele really shines in the evening with a menu of classic pasta dishes, including cacio e pepe, strozzapreti with vegan kale pesto, pappardelle topped with lamb ragu, and spinach pasta lasagna. Beyond seating in the dining room, the restaurant also features a rooftop terrace bar and lounge complete with fire pits. Reservations encouraged.

Cibo e Beve

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Cibo e Beve in Sandy Springs is a contemporary take on the classic trattoria. Try the pappardelle with braised short ribs tossed in red wine, tomatoes, garlic, and herbs or Cibo’s lobster spaghetti made with Maine lobster tail and tossed in a garlic wine sauce.

Campagnolo Restaurant + Bar

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Campagnolo is a comfortable and casual neighborhood trattoria with a large patio located in the heart of Midtown one block up from Piedmont Park. Favorites to try here include the pappardelle with duck confit and the fettuccine capricciose with wild mushrooms and arugula topped with pecorino cheese.

il Giallo Osteria & Bar

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Located in Sandy Springs, il Giallo offers Italian classics and pastas along with fresh-caught seafood from the Georgia coast on its menu. Regulars rave about the Caesar salad, complimentary freshly baked focaccia bread, and the polpette (beef, turkey and duck meatballs swimming in mushroom gravy.) As for the pastas, try the roasted duck and fontina agnolotti, gnocchi with gorgonzola and speck, or the lasagna matta made with braised beef short rib.

Storico Fresco Alimentari e Ristorante

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Part-restaurant, part-market, and part-pasta company, Storico Fresco in Buckhead is likely one of the best places in Atlanta to buy and consume freshly-made pasta. Portions here are easily shared. Order a couple of pastas for the table like the cacio e pepe, the squid ink ravioli with salmon belly, or lasagna alla bolognese. Storico offers pasta-making classes, too. The team behind Storico Fresco also own Roman Italian restaurant Forza Storico at Westside Provisions District.

Noni’s Deli is an Edgewood Avenue mainstay serving generous pasta portions like grandma used to make only paired with lots of beer, wine, and strong cocktails. Try the tagliatelle with bolognese or keep it simple and order farfalle with marinara and freshly-shaved parmesan. Noni’s also offers deli-style sandwiches with a side of addictive parmesan garlic fries.

Dirty Rascal

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Italian-American restaurant Dirty Rascal is the latest dining spot from chef Todd Ginsberg and the team behind Rye Restaurants group (the General Muir, Wood’s Chapel BBQ). Located at the Thompson Hotel, and led in the kitchen by chef Josh Hopkins, head here to dine on red sauce joint classics like steak Diane, lasagna, chicken scarpariello, and eggplant parmesan paired with dirty martinis. Look for meatballs, shrimp cocktail, and hero sandwiches and paninis during lunch, too. Reservations encouraged. 

This cozy, wood-laden neighborhood bistro in the Old Fourth Ward serves a tight menu of pastas with a bit of Southern flare on its menu, and lots of in-season vegetables, too. Order the classic cacio e pepe or try the fusilli with diver scallops, chard, and mushrooms tossed in a light cream sauce. Be sure to order a cocktail or wine here.

Bellina Alimentari

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Bellina Alimentari inside Ponce City Market is an Italian specialty shop and market from Tal Baum (Aziza, Atrium) with a small osteria in back focused on wine and fresh pasta. The menu often changes with the seasons. Don’t pass up the chance to order the basil lumache with basil pesto and pistachio topped with parmigiano reggiano or the slow-cooked beef and pork ragu served over fresh-made pappardelle.

BoccaLupo

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BoccaLupo quickly became both a neighborhood favorite and a destination restaurant when it opened in 2013 on Edgewood Avenue. Order any of the fresh pasta dishes on the menu (the black spaghetti and the 20-yolk tagliatelle are now Atlanta classics.) Make sure to check out the tight wine list and cocktails here, too. Reservations required.

Osteria Mattone

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Osteria Mattone from restaurateur Ryan Pernice (Table & Main) and sommelier Dan Pernice brings Rome to the heart of Roswell’s historic district. Try the classic and simple spago pomodoro with tomato, basil garlic, and parmesan or the hearty tagliolini bolognese with beef ragu and ricotta salata. For a taste of the sea, there’s the frutti di mare with calamari, mussels, and shrimp. Make sure to order wine here, too.

Nino's Italian Restaurant

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Located on Cheshire Bridge Road, Nino’s has been doling out old school red sauce pasta dishes in Atlanta for over 50 years now. Keep it simple with the spaghetti and meatballs or the lasagna or order the fettucine with shrimp and scallops tossed in Pernod and saffron cream sauce. There’s also the classic veal parmesan. Reservations highly encouraged.

Sotto Sotto Restaurant

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Located in the heart of Inman Quarter, Sotto Sotto has been a popular spot for pasta and other classic Italian dishes for over 20 years. Order everything from tortelli di Michelangelo Buonarroti and cacio pepe to fettuccine Alfredo and spinach and ricotta gnocchi here. Reservations highly encouraged. Cashless restaurant.

La Tavola

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La Tavola in Virginia-Highland is a neighborhood trattoria in every sense of the word tucked inside a cozy, narrow dining room off of Virginia Avenue. Keep it super simple with a bowl of spaghetti and meatballs or get a bit fancy with squid ink spaghetti made with calamari, Calabrian chilies, and Thai basil pesto. All pastas can be ordered in both appetizer and entree-sized portions. Cashless restaurant.

Paolino Italian Restaurant

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Located in the heart of Oakhurst Village, Saba returns to its former home there as Paolino Italian Restaurant and Gelateria. Owned by Shane Mixon, the menu for Paolino’s centers around classic Italian dishes and pastas, including fettuccine Alfredo, linguine and clam sauce, and lasagna, along with lobster ravioli and eggplant pappardelle.

The White Bull

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Chef and owner Pat Pascarella kicked off a pandemic renovation of his Decatur restaurant in 2020, reconfiguring the dining room and adding a large outdoor space in back with plenty of seating for dinner under the stars. Head here for Pascarella’s handmade daily pasta specials and pasta flights serving up to five people. End a pasta-packed meal here with affogato or panna cotta. Pascarella also owns Italian restaurants Bastone on Howell Mill Road and Grana on Piedmont Road.

no. 246

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Ford Fry retooled the menu at his popular Decatur Italian restaurant in 2021, transforming it and the dishes into an old school red sauce joint. Look for classics like spaghetti and meatballs, cacio e pepe, and rigatoni with vodka sauce, along with pizzas (including a clam pie), shrimp scampi, and chicken scallopini here.

Bambinelli’s Italian Restaurant

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This family-owned, old school Italian restaurant is named for its matriarch, whose parents hailed from Torino, Italy. Expect comforting pastas like baked ziti and lasagna, fettuccine alfredo, and carbonara on the menu here. Bambinelli’s eggplant parmigiana is one of the most popular dishes on the menu. It features lightly battered eggplant simmered in red sauce topped with mozzarella cheese and served with a side of pasta marinara. The restaurant also includes locations in Roswell, Midtown, and Lilburn.

Dominick's Italian Of Historic Norcross

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Dominick’s in historic Norcross is where to head for heaping bowls of pasta slathered in sauce and cheese in Gwinnett County. Dishes of pure comfort are on the menu here, like baked ziti or spinach and sun-dried tomato manicotti baked in Alfredo sauce and topped with marinara. There are also locations in Lawrenceville, Buford, and Watkinsville.

Piastra Restaurant

Piastra is a family-owned and operated Italian restaurant located on Marietta’s historic town square. The old school pasta dishes on the menu here are all made fresh using local and non-GMO ingredients. Order the classic tagliatelle vongole with little neck clams tossed in white wine and garlic.

Toscano Ristorante Italiano

This Tuscan-style bistro serves old-school Italian dishes and pastas at Atlantic Station, like bucatini carbonara, penne alla vodka, and taglierini bolegnese, along with entrees of chicken marsala, eggplant parmigiana, and veal picatta. There’s pizza here, too. Expect cocktails such as the Negroni and Aperol spritz from the bar and a list of mostly Italian wines by the bottle and glass.

La Grotta Ristorante

La Grotta is a beloved Atlanta classic. This is white tablecloth, fine dining Italian complete with a secret garden right off of busy Peachtree Road in Buckhead. Come here for decadent pasta dishes like sacchetti (“beggar’s purses”) stuffed with fontina and black truffles dressed in marasala wine sauce or pappardelle with lobster and shallots in a rosemary-white wine cream sauce. Jackets are suggested, ties are optional. In other words, don’t wear jeans and a t-shirt here. Reservations highly encouraged.

Lyla Lila

Chef Craig Richards describes the food at his Midtown restaurant, Lyla Lila, as “Italian in spirit and technique,” but with an “expanded pantry” featuring Georgia grown ingredients. The menu spotlights flavors and dishes found throughout Italy and southern Spain, and offers several of Richards’ handmade pastas and risottos. Reservations highly encouraged; especially for evenings when shows are taking place at the nearby Fox Theatre.

Tre Vele

Mission and Market chef Ian Winslade and brothers Ryan and Jonathan Akly opened this Italian restaurant and market at the City Walk complex in 2021. Billed as an all-day dining establishment, Tre Vele really shines in the evening with a menu of classic pasta dishes, including cacio e pepe, strozzapreti with vegan kale pesto, pappardelle topped with lamb ragu, and spinach pasta lasagna. Beyond seating in the dining room, the restaurant also features a rooftop terrace bar and lounge complete with fire pits. Reservations encouraged.

Cibo e Beve

Cibo e Beve in Sandy Springs is a contemporary take on the classic trattoria. Try the pappardelle with braised short ribs tossed in red wine, tomatoes, garlic, and herbs or Cibo’s lobster spaghetti made with Maine lobster tail and tossed in a garlic wine sauce.

Campagnolo Restaurant + Bar

Campagnolo is a comfortable and casual neighborhood trattoria with a large patio located in the heart of Midtown one block up from Piedmont Park. Favorites to try here include the pappardelle with duck confit and the fettuccine capricciose with wild mushrooms and arugula topped with pecorino cheese.

il Giallo Osteria & Bar

Located in Sandy Springs, il Giallo offers Italian classics and pastas along with fresh-caught seafood from the Georgia coast on its menu. Regulars rave about the Caesar salad, complimentary freshly baked focaccia bread, and the polpette (beef, turkey and duck meatballs swimming in mushroom gravy.) As for the pastas, try the roasted duck and fontina agnolotti, gnocchi with gorgonzola and speck, or the lasagna matta made with braised beef short rib.

Storico Fresco Alimentari e Ristorante

Part-restaurant, part-market, and part-pasta company, Storico Fresco in Buckhead is likely one of the best places in Atlanta to buy and consume freshly-made pasta. Portions here are easily shared. Order a couple of pastas for the table like the cacio e pepe, the squid ink ravioli with salmon belly, or lasagna alla bolognese. Storico offers pasta-making classes, too. The team behind Storico Fresco also own Roman Italian restaurant Forza Storico at Westside Provisions District.

Noni's

Noni’s Deli is an Edgewood Avenue mainstay serving generous pasta portions like grandma used to make only paired with lots of beer, wine, and strong cocktails. Try the tagliatelle with bolognese or keep it simple and order farfalle with marinara and freshly-shaved parmesan. Noni’s also offers deli-style sandwiches with a side of addictive parmesan garlic fries.

Dirty Rascal

Italian-American restaurant Dirty Rascal is the latest dining spot from chef Todd Ginsberg and the team behind Rye Restaurants group (the General Muir, Wood’s Chapel BBQ). Located at the Thompson Hotel, and led in the kitchen by chef Josh Hopkins, head here to dine on red sauce joint classics like steak Diane, lasagna, chicken scarpariello, and eggplant parmesan paired with dirty martinis. Look for meatballs, shrimp cocktail, and hero sandwiches and paninis during lunch, too. Reservations encouraged. 

a mano

This cozy, wood-laden neighborhood bistro in the Old Fourth Ward serves a tight menu of pastas with a bit of Southern flare on its menu, and lots of in-season vegetables, too. Order the classic cacio e pepe or try the fusilli with diver scallops, chard, and mushrooms tossed in a light cream sauce. Be sure to order a cocktail or wine here.

Bellina Alimentari

Bellina Alimentari inside Ponce City Market is an Italian specialty shop and market from Tal Baum (Aziza, Atrium) with a small osteria in back focused on wine and fresh pasta. The menu often changes with the seasons. Don’t pass up the chance to order the basil lumache with basil pesto and pistachio topped with parmigiano reggiano or the slow-cooked beef and pork ragu served over fresh-made pappardelle.

BoccaLupo

BoccaLupo quickly became both a neighborhood favorite and a destination restaurant when it opened in 2013 on Edgewood Avenue. Order any of the fresh pasta dishes on the menu (the black spaghetti and the 20-yolk tagliatelle are now Atlanta classics.) Make sure to check out the tight wine list and cocktails here, too. Reservations required.

Osteria Mattone

Osteria Mattone from restaurateur Ryan Pernice (Table & Main) and sommelier Dan Pernice brings Rome to the heart of Roswell’s historic district. Try the classic and simple spago pomodoro with tomato, basil garlic, and parmesan or the hearty tagliolini bolognese with beef ragu and ricotta salata. For a taste of the sea, there’s the frutti di mare with calamari, mussels, and shrimp. Make sure to order wine here, too.

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Nino's Italian Restaurant

Located on Cheshire Bridge Road, Nino’s has been doling out old school red sauce pasta dishes in Atlanta for over 50 years now. Keep it simple with the spaghetti and meatballs or the lasagna or order the fettucine with shrimp and scallops tossed in Pernod and saffron cream sauce. There’s also the classic veal parmesan. Reservations highly encouraged.

Sotto Sotto Restaurant

Located in the heart of Inman Quarter, Sotto Sotto has been a popular spot for pasta and other classic Italian dishes for over 20 years. Order everything from tortelli di Michelangelo Buonarroti and cacio pepe to fettuccine Alfredo and spinach and ricotta gnocchi here. Reservations highly encouraged. Cashless restaurant.

La Tavola

La Tavola in Virginia-Highland is a neighborhood trattoria in every sense of the word tucked inside a cozy, narrow dining room off of Virginia Avenue. Keep it super simple with a bowl of spaghetti and meatballs or get a bit fancy with squid ink spaghetti made with calamari, Calabrian chilies, and Thai basil pesto. All pastas can be ordered in both appetizer and entree-sized portions. Cashless restaurant.

Paolino Italian Restaurant

Located in the heart of Oakhurst Village, Saba returns to its former home there as Paolino Italian Restaurant and Gelateria. Owned by Shane Mixon, the menu for Paolino’s centers around classic Italian dishes and pastas, including fettuccine Alfredo, linguine and clam sauce, and lasagna, along with lobster ravioli and eggplant pappardelle.

The White Bull

Chef and owner Pat Pascarella kicked off a pandemic renovation of his Decatur restaurant in 2020, reconfiguring the dining room and adding a large outdoor space in back with plenty of seating for dinner under the stars. Head here for Pascarella’s handmade daily pasta specials and pasta flights serving up to five people. End a pasta-packed meal here with affogato or panna cotta. Pascarella also owns Italian restaurants Bastone on Howell Mill Road and Grana on Piedmont Road.

no. 246

Ford Fry retooled the menu at his popular Decatur Italian restaurant in 2021, transforming it and the dishes into an old school red sauce joint. Look for classics like spaghetti and meatballs, cacio e pepe, and rigatoni with vodka sauce, along with pizzas (including a clam pie), shrimp scampi, and chicken scallopini here.

Bambinelli’s Italian Restaurant

This family-owned, old school Italian restaurant is named for its matriarch, whose parents hailed from Torino, Italy. Expect comforting pastas like baked ziti and lasagna, fettuccine alfredo, and carbonara on the menu here. Bambinelli’s eggplant parmigiana is one of the most popular dishes on the menu. It features lightly battered eggplant simmered in red sauce topped with mozzarella cheese and served with a side of pasta marinara. The restaurant also includes locations in Roswell, Midtown, and Lilburn.

Dominick's Italian Of Historic Norcross

Dominick’s in historic Norcross is where to head for heaping bowls of pasta slathered in sauce and cheese in Gwinnett County. Dishes of pure comfort are on the menu here, like baked ziti or spinach and sun-dried tomato manicotti baked in Alfredo sauce and topped with marinara. There are also locations in Lawrenceville, Buford, and Watkinsville.

Related Maps