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Cafe La Bellitalia

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1026 N Sherman Ave
Madison, WI 53704 (Map & Directions)
Phone: (608) 243-1200

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Cafe La Bellitalia ($$)
Italian, Pizza

Additional Dining Info


Credit Cards Accepted

Parking Lot

Good for Kids


Beer and Wine


Price Point
$$ $ - Cheap Eats (Under $10)
$$ - Moderate ($11-$25)
$$$ - Expensive ($25-$50)
$$$$ - Very Pricey (Over $50)


Outdoor Seats


Mon: 4pm - 10pm, Tue-Thu: 11am - 10pm, Fri: 11am - 11pm, Sat: 3:30pm - 11pm, Sun: 3:30pm - 9pm

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Top Reviews of Cafe La Bellitalia

review_stars 05/09/2013 - Sue Simon
We ordered lasagna for a family party and all our guests were so complimentary. Lasagna itself was wonderful, plus they sent a tomato sauce for it that was the topping on the cake ! Delicious.

Food arrived on time and hot. Would recommend their catering to everyone.

review_stars 03/17/2013 - Steve C-Madiison
What a nice experience we had. Our server, Angie, could not be any better to encounter. A great smile and very friendly! This was our 3rd time at this restaurant. We ordered garlic bread and a meatball sampler for starters. Excellent food on both accounts. Then 2 small pizzas arrived and were also great. We plan to bring our whole family in for dinner soon! Keep up the good work!

review_stars 03/14/2013 - LMF
Lunch today was awful! We were the only table and it took forever to get a salad and a slice of pizza which was cold and rubbery. Waitress never came to see if all was okay or to see if we wanted another soda. We sat there listening to her on the phone to her mother. Last visit was bad too but I thought I'd give it another try. Not going back! Too bad because I like to give locals places my business.

review_stars 04/11/2011 - Angela
Just went there for the first time tonight with friends for my birthday. We had made a reservation and our table was all set up with our water on the table waiting for us. Our waitress was very friendly and we didn't have a wait for anything. Also the food was amazing. I can't wait to go back.

review_stars 03/30/2011 - John
This place is awesome. The staff is great and the food is delicious. The prices are also very reasonable. The pizza is some of the best in Madison, and cheap too. The atmosphere is a comfortable and unpretentious. It's great to have ca good, family owned restaurant on the north/east of Madison. So much better than chain restaurants like Olive Garden. If you don't like this place, then you must be smoking crack.

review_stars 02/20/2011 - David Shaw
We made a reservation for Saturday night at 3:30 pm that afternoon. Our party of 4 arrived 5 minutes before the 6 pm reservation. Every table was filled, with one table having just opened their menus. The restaurant DID NOT hold our reservation. We were told we would be seated next. When a larger table opened up 5 minutes later, we were NOT given that table because "it is for 5 people not more." So if you make a reservation, don't expect it to be honored. We left.

review_stars 01/30/2011 - Lynn
My husband and I had dinner there last night and the food was wonderful and the service was great. Love the atmosphere and the whole experience. I had the Mussel Fettuccine and my husband had the sampler platter (spaghetti and meatball, lasagna and chicken Parmesan. We can't wait to go back and try new things.

review_stars 01/06/2011 - BernieBon Chance
I have worked dining rooms and eaten my way through many more.This place has the food selection for anyone we have ever taken there. Service is crisp,friendly,flexible and knowledgable. The first couple of times my wife and I were treated to the excellent tiramasu. The other diners seemed swept into the feel -good atmosphere.
The owner/operator seems to always be there. (He says he can also play a mean game of futbol when not working. ) A great addition to the neighborhood.
I get away with pretending Belletalia is my own cooking on my cook nights. Like my dear old mama used to say," Shut up and eat!" I wonder how that sounds in Italian.

review_stars 12/09/2010 - James K
Bellitalia is the best Italian food I have eaten in a long time. I enjoy it so much that my wife and I try to go at least once a month. The staff is courteous, the restaurant has an Italian feel to it and the food is beyond amazing.

review_stars 09/01/2010 - Pizza
Great thin crust pizza at an excellant value! Quick delivery if your close by. Wish they were open later M-Th. Not many choices after 10.

review_stars 07/17/2010 - Sarah
This is one of my favorite restaurants in Madison! The food is wonderful and I've never had bad or slow service despite what the other reviewers have said. The dining area is small, but that doesn't really bother me at all. More like Europe! I've never been disappointed with the chicken parmesan, mussels with linguine or the lobster ravioli. My boyfriend loves the lasagna. Lots of options! On weeknights, a man plays guitar; it's a nice and romantic spot that is not too expensive. It is great for lunch, too!

review_stars 01/10/2010 - Tanya
The food is great! Pay the extra buck and get the mostaccioli baked, the rigitoni ala vodka is fantastic and the pizzas are great. I would get take out, however because delivery can take forever (especially during March Maddness and Packer game days) and dining in has left a lot of be desired. For the most part, the staff are rude and incompetent, except for the hostess' and the space inside the dining room is as cramped as the parking lot.
But, don't get me wrong: the food is fantastic; large portions, great taste and reasonably priced.

review_stars 06/27/2009 - Calam
This restaurant is hands down the best Italian food in Madison. As a connoisseur of Italian food, I have frequented many of the Madison area Italian restaurants, and was astounded by the exquisite food served at Cafe La Bellitalia. The authentic, family owned/operated restaurant provides a cozy, quaint atmosphere to enjoy your selection from their expansive menu, and has more "bang for your buck" than any other Italian restaurant in Madison. Since my first visit, I have become a frequent patron of this establishment and have worked my way through nearly all of their menu. Needless to say, I have never been disappointed. If you want great Italian food, great service, and a relaxing environment you can't beat Cafe La Bellitalia.

review_stars 06/17/2009 - Amanda
I really love this place; it has quickly become the go-to spot for my weekly lunch dates with friends. The food is excellent (granted, I always get one of two things--either the breaded cheese ravioli or the cheese pizza-- but if these two items are indicative of the other food quality as a whole, you can't go wrong with anything on the menu!) My dining companions have also said the eggplant parmigiana is quite satisfying.

The only downside is that if you are going there for lunch during the workday, be sure to ask for your check right as they bring the food. Otherwise, they tend to leave you alone to eat your food in peace (a la Europe), and it seems to take them forever to return to your table (and even longer to offer the check), so if you only have an hour for lunch, you'll be back at the office much later than expected. However, asking for the check right away has circumvented this problem. I highly recommend this place; I love supporting local businesses, especially in this economy, and Cafe La Bellitalia is definitely one worth supporting!

review_stars 02/05/2009 - OnceInaLifetime
I ordered a regular family spaghetti dish from this restaurant, thinking it will taste more "Italian and authentic." But when I received it (had it delivered) it wasn't anything like I had expected. The spaghetti had a watered-down taste to it and the whole dish tasted far less bland than any other generic pasta dish. Learning from that experience, I now cook my own spaghetti.

review_stars 09/19/2008 - Loretta Langlois
I don't do much 'restaurant' eating; I love to cook. However, once I visited La Bellatalia, I had to tell (and take) others!! The food is so good ~ the atmosphere is wonderful (so are the servers ;p), and the price is reasonable.

I've been back several times and will continue to do so! Thank you for being such a great place ... and on the North side of Madison!


review_stars 08/03/2008 -
This restaurant is GREAT! I love Italian food, they offer very good food at reasonable prices! They have also brought in a new Italian Wine that went GREAT with our meal, they call it Tola Wine. The service was GREAT, the owner even came to our table after our meal to thank us!

review_stars 07/02/2008 - Pizza Snob
The Pizza is excellent; you can really taste the wine in the sauce, great blend of cheeses, awesome the next day cold. And the best yet, it's a 10 minute walk from the house!

review_stars 06/26/2008 -
We purchased a gift certificate on for this restaurant. Instead of getting one $50 certificate, this vender has chosen to issue five $10 certificates that must be used on five different occassions. Good marketing move on their part, but slightly manipulative to the consumer.
We have used three of the certificates and frankly, are considering just disposing of the last two. My husband, teen age daughter and myself have always been seated promptly, but that's about the only thing they do promptly. We have waited up to 10 minutes to be given water by a waitress who promises to be "right back". After waiting again to order, you can plan on waiting another 30+ minutes for your meal. That's if they have not returned to tell you they are out of something you ordered. This has happened on two of our three visits, once was Canadian Bacon for a pizza which one would think would be a staple at an Italian restaurant. We once saw an employee coming in with a bag from Copp's. Please tell me they are not running out to buy ingredients!
Northside residents are painfully aware of the few choices for quality family dining in our neighborhood so we would love to support this family run business. The owners of Cafe La Bellitalia however, are in serious need of a business plan that will allow them to be successful. If patrons are willing to deal with the cramped parking and confined dining space, the least they could do is provide a quality level of service. It's not Rick & Ole's neighborhood bar anymore and it is time for the owners to realize they are now a restaraunt, hire competent staff, purchase sufficient ingredients and in general step of the pace.

review_stars 05/01/2008 - David Martin
This is a fun, neighborhood restaurant. Nothing fancy. However, from pizza to lasagne to manicotii, the food is very enjoyable. Tables are a bit tight, and the regular salad is so-so. Still, this is a value-place. Since we live in the neighborhood, it's a go to place on the spur of the moment. While far from our special restaurant for birthdays, anniversaries, etc., we'll be going back as long as the good food and service last. The wine list isn't anything to write home about, but there are some good values there as well.

review_stars 04/12/2008 - Timmy
We've only ordered for delivery so I can't speak for the decor, but we love the food! Excellent prices, fresh food, and generous portions. The pizza is good and the pasta borderlines on great.

review_stars 03/18/2008 - Cafe La Bellitalia
Food is excellent. Service is great. Portions are Large. Only bad thing is it's small, but cute. You are crammed in there. And summer time, very hot inside. I wish they had a bigger restaurant, but usually the best restaurants are the tiny ones!

review_stars 03/04/2008 -
After just moving to the neighborhood last summer, Cafe La Bellitalia has become one of my favorite places, and not just because it's close by and convenient. The food is not fancy, but it's reasonably priced, quickly prepared and always delicious. I've had selections from both their pasta and pizza menus, and everything has been dependably yummy. Don't go just for the food, though -- this is a great little neighborhood spot with super-friendly people, fast service and a fun, crowded, diverse and very dynamic dining room. If you like your dining experiences elegant, refined and pin-dropping quiet, Bellitalia isn't the place for you, but if you like a little laughter and neighborhood mojo with a simple and delicious Italian dinner, definitely give this little gem a try.

review_stars 12/02/2007 - gme
We love this place. The food is always perfect. Not fancy, but GOOD! You won't find better service anywhere. The waitresses really hussle, and the food is delivered quickly.

The restaurant is small and the tables are a little crowded together, and usually there is a crowd waiting to be seated. But it is worth the wait.

review_stars 11/20/2007 -
Everything is fabulous. Order twice what you can eat and enjoy the leftovers. This restaurant has the best bruschetta in Madison.

review_stars 11/10/2007 - MeestaShane
Fantastic Italian food. Set in a small space, it is often filled to capacity and can get loud, but that actually gives it a better "Italian family" atmosphere. I've tried a great many things on the menu, and have never had a disappointing meal, and at a great price.

review_stars 10/22/2007 -
Terrific Italian food without going to a chain restaurant. Lots of variety on the menu. The owners are real people who want you to have a very nice time. The place is a little small. So, as it becomes more popular, the crowds can accumulate. Weekends are busy. But, you can still get a good table easily during the week. Come right away before everyone discovers this really nice little Italian restaurant.

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