VinciTorio's Restaurant

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1835 E. Elliot Road, Tempe

Italian restaurants are a dime a dozen here in the Valley, and most of them are carbon copies of one another. Same menus, same passable but none-too-exciting food. VinciTorio's, a cozy neighborhood Italian with upscale sensibilities, walks all over the competition by sweating the details. Faux-finished walls, exposed brick, Italian landscape paintings and framed family photos give the place the cozy, comfortable ambiance of a home in Tuscany. The wine list is almost exclusively Italian; the bread basket is filled with house-baked focaccia, and the menu offers familiar favorites as well as a few dishes you may have never tried before. Start with burrata (a soft, creamy mozzarella-like cheese often offered as a special), fresh asparagus baked with prosciutto or the wonderful antipasto platter; then move on to house-made pasta dishes (absolutely do not miss the butternut squash ravioli with four-cheese sauce) and entrees such as veal Genovese (which is as good a version as I've ever had). Save room for house-made tiramisu and zuppa Inglese or try one of the fantastic gelatos or sorbets, imported from Italy. Lunch M-Sa; dinner nightly. $-$$$