5 American Eateries Showcasing The Best Of Italian Cuisine

No matter where you're from, you probably grew up loving Italian food. These restaurants hope to bring back those pleasant childhood memories of pizza and pasta while offering some tastes you may not have experienced before. In no particular order, here are some restaurants from across the United States upholding the great tradition of Italian cuisine.

Starting things off at #1 is Barbusa. Located in San Diego's Little Italy neighborhood, it offers a modern take on Sicilian cuisine, along with hand-crafted cocktails and a wide selection of red, white, and sparkling wines both Italian and domestic. The Busalacchi family is well-known in the area for its decades of operating restaurants steeped in tradition.

Diners can treat themselves to adventurous appetizers like bone marrow or lamb lollipops, as well as more traditional fare like bruschetta or calamari. The pizzas, which include a classic margherita as well as a California that features avocado and arugula, can be ordered with a cauliflower crust and vegan mozzarella to accommodate any lifestyle.

Coming in at #2 is Charlie Gitto’s, which has been a staple of St. Louis for more than 35 years. The original restaurant, which opened in the Hill neighborhood in 1981, is still operating today, and offers two private dining rooms for special occasions. In 2004, a second location was opened at Hollywood Casino in Maryland Heights.

The menu features the famous St. Louis toasted ravioli, along with brick-oven pizzas and homemade pasta. Lovers of meat can try a steak or one of the many varieties of veal or chicken. Diners at the Hill location can treat themselves to desserts like creme brulee or gelato made in-house, and warm themselves up in the winter with fresh bread and hot soups.

At #3 is Delmonico's Italian Steakhouse, which has several locations throughout New York State, as well as one in Orlando, Florida. Guests have fallen in love with the restaurant's classic style and large menu that features Italian favorites and family takeout specials, not to mention cocktails and a happy hour with drink specials perfect for unwinding after a long day.

Of course, Delmonico's specialty is steak, and the restaurant offers several cuts, including New York strip, sirloin, filet mignon, and The Delmonico, a 24-ounce ribeye that's not for the faint of heart. If you can manage to save some room for dessert, a full dessert menu awaits, with decadent varieties of cheesecake being a popular choice.

The #4 selection is D'Angelo Italian Market of Princeton, New Jersey. A grocery, bakery, and catering company, it offers an extensive selection of conventional and organic produce, commodities such as milk and eggs, a full service butcher, and delivery service. The catering arm allows for custom menu design for weddings, university events, and functions at any time of day.

The menu at D'Angelo features everything from sandwiches, burgers, and pizza to specials like filet mignon en croute with mushroom ragout, bacon-wrapped pork chops with sausage stuffing, and frittatas with potato, egg, and Italian ham. And of course, there are plenty of pastries and desserts like pignoli tarts and cannoli.

Rounding out the list at #5 is Culina, located in Los Angeles, California. Named after the word for the kitchen in an ancient Roman house, it strives to set itself apart from the Beverly Hills dining scene by offering something for the savvy gourmand, using fresh and seasonal ingredients and authentic Italian tastes to appease all palates. Diners can choose to eat outdoors and take in the sunshine on the lush patio.

The restaurant has an extensive wine list, with some choices even available for carry-out with pizza. There are multiple private dining options, and Culina also caters for occasions like rehearsal dinners and Awards Season parties. Guests of this eatery can find authentic Italian antipasti, salads, and pasta with additions like Taggiasca olives and summer truffles.