Though Hoboken is only one square mile, it is absolutely packed with incredible Italian restaurants. It isn’t hard to find delicious pizza, rich pasta, flavorful red sauce, and to-die-for chicken parm. The tougher question is deciding which spot to reserve for Saturday night dinner. We’re finally taking the leap and rounding up a list of the highly debated topic on this side of the Hudson: the best Italian restaurants in Hoboken. We’re talking classic sit-down, make-a-reservation (if you can) type of spots. From BYOB to southern Italian to upscale-inspired, here’s our definitive list of the best Italian restaurants in Hoboken, New Jersey (and before you ask, yes, we’ve also included a list of pizza spots + Italian delis).
The Best Sit-Down Italian Restaurants
Apulia | 1319 Washington Street
(Photo credits: @apuliahoboken)
This uptown spot serves up some seriously delicious burrata. It’s on the menu by itself as an appetizer, intended to be paired with other dishes. It can be added to a salad, pizza — or, you know, just eaten by itself. Many uptown Hobokenites will swear by the pizza here, especially a classic Margherita. Apulia rises its dough for 48 hours in a temperature-controlled room and then cooks it in a wood-burning oven, and a simple pie lets that flavor shine through. With a vegan pie and gluten-free crusts available for an additional $5, this is also a great place to bring a crew with dietary restrictions. Reservations can be made online here — but just a heads up, there’s a $25/person last-minute cancellation or no-show fee.
Augustino’s | 1104 Washington Street
Augustino’s is known around town as a highly-coveted dining spot — partially because it’s tough to get a table (it’s tiny inside) but also because the food is so delicious. The owner, Buddy, opened up back in 1997, naming the restaurant after his father. Fun fact: Buddy’s father sang in the same Italian-American musical quartet as the one and only Frank Sinatra, and there are photos all over the restaurant to celebrate it. This menu is really stacked. The orecchiette + broccoli rabe (pictured above) with sweet or hot sausage is flavorful and rich — and the chicken parm is also a must-try here. But perhaps the best thing to get: the pork chops. Whether served breaded with apple sauce or sautéed with peppers, it’s a winner at Augustino’s. We also highly, highly recommend finishing off the meal with some ice box pie. It has a full bar as well — but heads up: it’s cash only.
Blue Eyes | 525 Sinatra Drive
(Photo credits: @blueeyeshoboken)
Just look at this pizza — it’s simply beautiful. At Blue Eyes (yes, named after Sinatra), the food is part of the view for sure — but the view outside is also the draw. It sits on the waterfront, meaning the spectacular Manhattan skyline is directly on display. Owner Alessandro actually flies in buffalo mozzarella from Italy each week, and on top of that, the wood burning oven is actually made from Naples bricks. Between the water views and the mutz, dining at Blue Eyes is basically like dining in Venice. We are going to make a broad statement and say the thing to get here, unsurprisingly, is pizza. Plus, gluten-free crusts are available for $3 extra, so it’s a great spot to bring friends with a gluten sensitivity. It serves beer, wine, + some specialty drinks.
Cafe Michelina | 423 Bloomfield Street
(Photo credits: @cafemichelina)
This is a more rustic spot BYOB Italian restaurant. It’s family-owned and has been open in Hoboken since 1994. At Cafe Michelina, we adamantly point you to the vodka sauce. The gnocchi with vodka sauce topped with burrata and fresh herbs is absolutely magnificent and, as we like to say, tastes like little pillows. The lobster ravioli is another must-try dish — though because everything is homemade, there’s really no wrong turn here. “Everything is fresh. We grate our own cheese, make our own mozzarella twice a day, and take ingredients from our own garden,” Pietro, one of the owners, once told HG. It really doesn’t get much better than that.
Cucina Saporito | 328 Washington Street
(Photo credits: @cucinasaporito)
Cucina Saporito had a makeover and changed its name from Trattoria Saporito. It’s been open since 1999 and has a romantic + cozy vibe. The menu proudly displays a lack of pizza in order to highlight the star here: the house-made pasta, meaning any pasta route you want to take here will be fresh + delicious. The menu is filled with Italian classics in addition to pasta, including chicken, beef, veal, fish, and even vegan options — like a not-often-seen vegan risotto. Many diners also rave about the chicken parm. This is a BYOB restaurant and bonus, it doesn’t have a cork fee.
Grimaldi’s | 411 Washington Street
(Photo credits: @grimaldis_hoboken)
Grimaldi’s once had two Hoboken locations, once of which has since become Napoli’s downtown. As the picture above illustrates, Grimaldi’s is known for its high-quality pizza — and every pie comes out of a custom-built, coal-burning, thousand-degree oven. The mozzarella cakes with marinara sauce are also delicious (not that there’s such a thing as bad fried cheese, but these are particularly yummy). Though we’re big fans of red sauce, the white pizza is also admittedly very good. This restaurant serves wine + beer as well.
Il Tavolo di Palmisano | 700 Clinton Street
Anyone who has walked by Il Tavolo has likely done a double take. Its brick-lined exterior is adorned with beautiful flowers and practically draws people in the front door with its charm. We promise that the dining experience is just as awesome as its aesthetic. Il Tavolo boasts a wonderful staff (especially the lovely maître d’, Robert) and equally good food to boot. We are huge fans of the carbonara here — a classic Italian dish that is executed oh so well. The chicken Tavolo (served picatta stay above) is creamy, flavorful, and does not disappoint. We’re also pleased to say this is yet another spot with some top-of-the-line chicken parm. We recommend pairing the food with a drink — there’s a large wine + cocktail menu that features creative + delicious drinks. The Chocolatini is an especially dangerous (in a good way) after-dinner beverage.
Johnny Pepperoni’s | 219 11th Street #4323
Three words: vodka chicken parm. Johnny Pepperoni is full of charm — with its wood tables, red metal chairs, and black + white tiled floor, there’s something equally nostalgic and modern about dining here. While you can’t go wrong with pizza, our personal favorite is the vodka chicken parm. It is as full of flavor as it is silky and indulgent. This is a BYOB spot, ideal for bringing along a favorite wine to pair with these yummy Italian eats.
Leo’s Grandevous | #A, 200 Grand Street
Leo’s gets two pictures — one for the food and one for the legendary pour. For any shellfish lovers out there, the Prince Edward Island mussels are fresh and delicious (our personal pick is having them come with marinara sauce, but there’s also garlic white wine sauce for something a little sharper or Fra Diavolo sauce for something spicier). For the non-shellfish eaters, the penne vodka is also a slam dunk here. As for the pour, diners get quite the bang for their buck with wine filled right up to the brim — ideal for sipping over the course of a long and filling meal.
Read More: The Must-Try Pasta Spots in Jersey City
Margherita’s | 740 Washington Street
(Photo credits: @margheritasrestaurant)
This once BYOB spot now officially has its liquor license — and it also recently underwent a remodel a couple years back, giving it a total refresh. At Margherita’s, there are all of the usual Italian winners, like the pizzas + house-made pastas that are dominating this list. But one of our personal favorites here is actually the chicken parm. A little pro tip from the staff at Margherita’s that we’re dying to try: swapping out the red sauce for vodka sauce (pictured above). This is also a great spot to dine outside on the lovely patio, especially as we near some cooler fall weather.
Otto Strada | 743 Park Avenue
Otto Strada is a small, BYOB spot that does not take reservations — but it’s worth the gamble to wander over here for a meal. There’s also a charming outdoor area decorated with vines for when it’s too packed to eat inside. The stuffed artichoke is an awesome way to start off the meal while perusing the large menu, though the kind servers will say that the best thing at Otto Strada is the pasta. Pictured above is one of our favorite dishes: homemade orecchiette with fresh corn and burrata. It may be on the simple side, but this dish lets the fresh ingredients speak for themselves. For those opting for pizza, gluten-free crusts are available for individual pizzas only. And for those feeling extra indulgent: there’s also a Nutella pizza for dessert, decorated with chocolate chips and hazelnuts. Yes, we’ve tried it. Yes, it’s incredible. The owners of Otto Strada also own KikiLu Gelato, which just opened up in Hoboken this summer.
Panello | 720 Monroe Street C105
Panello prides itself on its LePanyol wood burning oven, and we understand why. At Panello, bread reigns supreme. Both owners/chefs (a husband and wife team) attended the French Culinary Institute, and this level of study shines through in the flavors. The freshly baked, homemade bread made in the wood burning oven is otherworldly – and as captured in the photo above, the pizza is just as fantastic. It has that wonderful earthy bite to it that we adore, a crispy crust, and it also makes for a pretty gorgeous photo. This is another BYOB spot. It’s currently closed for the month of August, but will open back up again in September.
San Giuseppe’s | 1320 Adams Street
(Photo credits: @sg_hoboken)
Okay, we would never recommend a Hoboken restaurant just for its parking situation — but if we were to do that, San Giuseppe’s would be number 1. That’s right, it has its very own parking lot, completely removing the stress of where to park from a relaxing evening out. Of course, it also doesn’t hurt that the food is delicious, too. We love the bastoncini di mozzarella (i.e., classic mozzarella sticks) as well as the Italian flag pizza, which is served with red sauce, fresh ricotta cheese, and pesto. To end the meal, we love to grab a slice of the rainbow cake. It’s moist, light, and a great end to a fantastic dinner. San Giuseppe’s is also BYOB.
Sorellina | 1036 Washington Street
(Photo credits: @sorellinahoboken)
Italy is known for its exceptional wines — so we’d be remiss not to highlight a local favorite the shines in the wine department. It recently received an Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator, and unsurprisingly, it received recognition for its wide array of Italian wines, curated by certified Sommelier + owner Gabi Lombardi, who also owns Sirenetta. The staff will happily make recommendations based on your taste + what you plan to order as well. Of course, cheese pairs beautifully with wine — which is why Sorellina has a formaggi and salumi section from which diners can select 3 choices. It’s served with baked olives, giardiniera, and a semolina roll made in house. This charming spot is excellent for both the wine-lovers and foodies alike.
Tenth Street Pasta + Pizza | 1000 Willow Avenue
(Photo credits: @tenthstreet_)
Tenth Street Pasta + Pizza was formerly owned by The Real Housewives of New Jersey star Chris Manzo. Its current co-owner is also the owner of 10th and Willow. For square pizza-lovers out there, diners absolutely love the classic square pie here. Though it isn’t featured in the name, we personally think the most epic dish on the menu is the naked meatballs. The meatballs are served with whipped ricotta, Italian long hot pepper, roasted garlic, and fresh rosemary — it’s simple, it’s classic, it’s awesome. This is also a BYOB establishment.
Zero Otto Uno Cafe | 502 Washington Street
(Photo credits: @zerottounocafe)
Zero Otto Uno translates to zero eight one and proudly boasts authentic Italian food — including Neapolitan pizzas. The interior is cozy and brick-lined, and the food is just as inviting. The menu is filled with classic, homemade Italian recipes that are great for a romantic date night, Sunday family dinner, or a great excuse for a weeknight BYOB dinner treat. Beyond the many Neapolitan pizzas, the meatball appetizer is a crowd-pleaser (made from a veal + beef blend, red sauce, ricotta, pecorino, basil). Diners also absolutely love the rigatoni bolognese (pictured above).
Anthony David’s | 953 Bloomfield Street
Though it is probably best known for its brunch, Anthony David’s also does dinner really well. It features yummy cocktails (the Endless Summer is a current menu item we love) and lots of Italian-inspired eats, from Tuscan fried chicken to pork chop parmesan. It also has some awesome pasta dishes as well, featuring fresh + pillowy pasta. The truffle carbonara (above) sports cavatelli pasta, a poached egg, pancetta, English peas, and pecorino — and it does not disappoint. We’re also big fans of the Cacio e Pepe + English peas, which hits the ideal level of richness without being too heavy. Just a heads up: Anthony David’s only accepts cash-less payments.
Antique Bar & Bakery | 122 Willow Avenue
(Photo credits: @antique_bar_bakery)
Antique Bar + Bakery is a beloved local spot. We’re putting this in the Italian-inspired section because you’ll see a lot of fun takes on Italian classics. A favorite among diners is the spaghetti squash carbonara, a lighter, healthier take on a traditionally rich dish. The hot oil shrimp is another super popular winner dish at Antique. Antique also has a fun cocktail menu — and even serves dirty Shirleys. Although we know this is more English than Italian, we also have to highlight the bread pudding here. Even people who aren’t typically bread pudding fans absolutely rave about this dessert.
Bin 14 | 1314 Washington Street
(Photo credits: @bin14winebar)
“In Vino Veritas” is the saying at Bin 14 — which translates to, “In wine, there’s truth.” As such, Bin 14 is known locally as a wine bar for obvious reasons — but it also specializes in Italian-inspired small plates. When it opened up in 2008, it was actually Hoboken’s first and only wine bar at the time. There are lots of Italian-inspired eats here. The mozzarella and pastas on the menu are all made in-house — plus, almost everything can be made gluten-free upon request. The staff will gladly recommend one of the many wines to go along with any of your dishes, or there’s also a diverse cocktail menu for those who prefer a mixed drink to wine. When it comes to menu winners, we recommend going for the cavatelli. There’s one house-made cavatelli dish made with broccolini, sweet sausage, pecorino, and parsley. Many diners also rave about the cavatelli with braised rabbit ragu.
Grand Vin | 500 Grand Street
(Photo credits: @grandvinhoboken)
Grand Vin has a simply beautiful interior. It’s lined with lights and vines; full of brick; and its rustic, cozy vibe makes for a really romantic date spot. It’s packed full of fun + delicious cocktails (we love the Devil Wears Nada) and often features really awesome live music. When it comes to the menu, the baked eggplant is one of our favorites — the cheese has that *awesome* pull, the sauce is flavorful, and it’s overall a comforting dish. Grand Vin also regularly features some unique specials. Just recently, it served a homemade eggplant ravioli with a mascarpone cream sauce as part of a special (pictured above). As for pasta regulars on the menu, the pappardelle with scallops, grape tomatoes, lemon vodka sauce, and crushed red pepper is exceptional. We always say Grand Vin knows what to do with a scallop.
Looking for Pizza? Here are Some Spots:
- Alessio’s Cafe
- Benny Tudino’s (For the biggest slice)
- The Brick
- Dolce & Salato
- Hungry Like the Wolf
- Imposto’s Pizza
- Mario’s Classic Pizza
- Pizza by Flour
- Rosario’s at Willow
- Tony Boloney’s
- Uptown Pizza
- Urban Coalhouse Pizza + Bar
Looking for an Italian deli? Here are some spots:
- Fiore’s House of Quality
- Lisa’s Italian Deli
- Losurdo’s Italian Deli
- Luca Brasi’s Deli
- M & P Biancamano
- Vito’s Deli