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“Good food; great service; lovely atmosphere.”
Review of Il Fornaio

Il Fornaio
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Ranked #9 of 2,223 Restaurants in San Jose
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: USD 30 - USD 50
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Groups, Romantic
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, After-hours, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: San Carlos St.
Transit: City bus stops are located nearby
Description: Il Fornaio means "The Baker" in Italian. This award-winning restaurant offers an authentic and unique dining experience. Specialties include wood-fired rotisserie and grilled meats, poultry and game; housemade pastas; pizzas from an oak wood burning oven; fresh salads and housemade soups; a wide variety of desserts; and fresh baked bread made daily from scratch. Winner of the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence 2013.
Reviewed 28 August 2017

As a chain, Il Fornaio does a great job of providing a consistently good dining experience regardless of location, day of the week, or season of the year.

My recent visit to Il Fornaio San Jose reaffirmed why I like this restaurant chain so much.

On Sunday, August 6, my husband and I spontaneously chose to have a late (8pm seating) dinner at Il Fornaio.

The hostess promptly seated us at a lovely window table and "Ihab", our waiter commenced rendering an exceptional service experience.

Ihab demonstrated an innate sense as to when we needed his attention and when we were content enjoying the quiet of our own conversation.

Throughout or meal, my husband and I were repeatedly impressed at the many 'little' things Ihab did to make us feel well served; two brief examples:

1) In looking at the menu, we were interested in a particular regional dish. Unbeknownst to us, Ihab took the time to step into the back office, search on the Internet for more information on this dish, print out the details of the dish, and delivered the brief summary document to our table. How do you say, "Wow!" in Italian?

2) At the meals conclusion, my husband requested a cappuccino. It was prepared and delivered flawlessly. With just a bit of coffee left in the cup, my husband asked Ihab for a bit more cream or milk to go with the last swallow of the coffee. Again, Ihab quietly stepped away and secured fresh STEAMED milk to be poured into my husband's cappuccino cup...thoughtfully knowing that cold milk would kill the pleasure of the last sip. How does one train someone to render that level of service?! Simply inspiring.

In closing, I also appreciate Kenneth Johns, Assistant Manager.

We were so impressed by Ihab that we asked to speak with "the manager" to extend our thanks and ensure Ihab's excellent service was recognized by his management team.

Kenneth came to our table and enthusiastically talked about Il Fornaio as a company and his passion for his employees' success. Kenneth demonstrated terrific leadership and I could see he would enable and inspire excellent service by his staff.

I speculate all of the above is enabled by a good, healthy company culture at Il Fornaio -- and for that, I say thank you to the entire Il Fornaio family...from CEO to front-line service staff...you are a good team; it is recognized and appreciated.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank NG1818
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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31 - 35 of 448 reviews

Reviewed 19 August 2017 via mobile

This restaurant is located inside the Westin Hotel on the first floor. Unfortunately it's not in a great area. Everywhere you look outside you see nothing but homeless people everywhere. I actually thought I was making reservations at the Santa Clara location and we ended up at this location instead. That said, the restaurant itself is beautiful and large. The waitstaff is courteous, friendly and attentive. The food was delicious and filling. I had the Cappellacci Di Zucca and it was the best I have ever had in my life. The presentation alone was unlike anything I had ever seen. The bread, the entrées, the wine, dessert...all fabulous. One thing to note at this location. When we arrived the restaurant was mostly empty as it was a Wednesday night. Even so, from start to finish it took two plus hours. That was a bit long. The food is definitely worth the wait but if you have somewhere to be, you should keep this in mind. The service was slow and the meal was slow to arrive. And that was on an empty evening....

Thank Jeni L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 August 2017

We went to Il Fornaio by chance because Nemea was closed--and we are glad. The food was fantastic. Our waiter, Brian, in addition to providing top notch service, recommended the seafood risotto and penne vodka--excellent selections. For dessert we enjoyed the zabaione tremendously. We will definitely return on our next trip to San Jose.

Thank Sonia F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2017

I ate here 3 nights in a row and I loved every minute! The Squash Ravioli with Sage is just spectacular. Had great service every night, ate alone 2 nights and with a group on the 3rd night. I actually switched hotels so I could stay in the same hotel where this restaurant is located. Used to have an Il Fornaio in the Boulder/Broomfield area and it was a favorite of our family's. Closed years ago and we still miss that place. We love the big open floor plan, the great service, and the specialty dishes. Great for vegetarians. Also the spumoni is a splurge but so fantastic to share.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank LuanaRubin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 July 2017 via mobile

Italy in all expession i love the food my family did as well and we definitely will come back.Close to every plave yu can imagine.

Thank nickyng1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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