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“The very best you will have!”

Charisma Cucina Italiana
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Ranked #617 of 4,724 Restaurants in San Diego
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$15 - US$25
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Child-friendly
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Delivery, Digital Payments, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Wine and Beer
Description: Family run italian bistro
Carlsbad, California
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“The very best you will have!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 October 2012

This place is as good as it gets. We had lunch on a beautiful afternoon just after they opened, and days later we are still talking about how great the food, the service, and even the prices are here. Without a doubt - the absolute best Italian food we've had if not ever, at least in many, many years. I highly recommend you go here for lunch or dinner – you will not be disappointed at all.

  • Visited October 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank KRB52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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49 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Stateline, Nevada
Level Contributor
420 reviews
276 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 146 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 August 2012

I checked a lot of sites and decided to try this place. What a find. Everything seemed to be home cooked. This place ranks right up there with the top 5 Italian food restaurants I have tried. I do get to say that, I'm full Italian, recently spent two months traveling and EATING in Italy and yes I have family there too.

We were dining early because we had our granddaughter with us (6 yrs).

The restaurant was empty but did fill as time went by. Our waiter Gennaro was wonderful. He took care of my GD and got her food quickly.

The special risotto was basil with shrimp. I wasn't feeling like fish so I asked if we could substitute. OF COURSE, whatever you want to do. I had the pesto, with pancetta. This was wonderful. Great flavors. I would have liked the risotto to be a little soupier but this was still excellent.

My wife had a pasta with cream sauce. Very good sauce.

My GD had the gnocchi with a meat sauce. I love the sauce. Very flavorful, a good amount of meat and very close to my memories of my grandmothers cooking. This was very close to my Mother's and Wife's sauce.

Since it was so good my GD said lets go back. We said why not.

We had the veal with mushrooms, lasagna, gnocchi in a cream sauce.

I like the veal. There was a lot of it. I thought the sauce could have been thicker but the flavors where there. I'm being picky.

The lasagna was great and so was the gnocchi. Again being picky, a little more garlic in the cream sauce-but that's me I love garlic.

Since this place is cook to order I know you could get more garlic if you wanted to.

Good choices on wines and they do have happy hour prices.

This will be our first stop for dinner in SD when we come back at the end of the month.

  • Visited August 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank sunnski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
323 reviews
186 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 150 helpful votes
“Great food, great service, great ambiance”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 August 2012

The owner is likely to serve you. He is from Napoli. The food is authentic and well prepared. Sitting outside is fun so you can watch the passing parade in Hillcrest. The veal dishes are excellent. They have a sicilian red wine that is excellent. And the prices are really reasonable.

  • Visited July 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank QQ1234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mexico City, Mexico
Level Contributor
37 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Italian jewel in San Diego”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2012

We tried many Italian restaurants and by far this has been the best one! Excellent quality of ingredients, but we specially loved the traditional way of preparing each dish. We tried the best caprese, pasta and tiramisu. Da leccarsi le ditte! The sevice was very friendly and is always nice when the owners are there to greet you. Grazie wonderful experience.

Thank Fiorellino_azzurro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
15 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Cozy little restaurant with great good!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 June 2012

I love this place! Food is great with lots of vegetarian options. I loved the selection of wines they offer. We like to go there for special occasions. Speaking from personal experience, they go out of their way to help you plan your special day :)

  • Visited January 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Scarab18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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