We’ve rounded up the top 10 authentic Italian restaurants that’ll take you on a delicious journey through la dolce vita.
Get ready to indulge in the flavours of Italy right here in The Berra! We’ve rounded up the top 10 authentic Italian restaurants that’ll take you on a delicious journey through la dolce vita. Whether it’s a woodfire pizza or a prawn pasta that you’re craving, these eateries are truly authentic. Picture laid-back trattorias with cosy vibes, bustling dining rooms, and an array of classic Italian dishes served with a contemporary twist. There’s even gluten-free pasta on the menu!
This list has been curated with the help of the dining experts at Westpac Concierge. Not only can they recommend the best places to eat, they’re also here to help you make a booking. If you’re a Westpac cardholder, you may already have access to this service, so check your eligibility today.
Discover the most authentic Italian restaurants in Canberra
Best for: a woodfire pizza
This modern trattoria, found inside the East Hotel, effortlessly brings together authentic Italian hospitality and contemporary flair. At Agostinis, good, simple, family-style cuisine takes centre stage. If you’re after a woodfire pizza, you’ve found just the place. There are more than 15 pizzas for you to choose from, with the possibility to opt for gluten-free dough and vegan cheese. Handmade pasta and classics such as bistecca alla fiorentina complete the offering, while an enticing array of Italian wines add to the welcoming vibe.
📍 East Hotel, 69 Canberra Avenue, Kingston, ACT 2604
Best for: contemporary Italian cuisine in a lively atmosphere
This Manuka establishment welcomes you into an industrial-like trattoria complete with brick walls and an open kitchen. Belluci’s Manuka has long established itself as a neighbourhood favourite, so don’t be surprised if the dining room is packed, something that only adds to the casual, lively ambience. The menu focuses on Italian classics – revisited with local produce and a contemporary twist, such as the house-smoked ocean trout risotto, the house-made ricotta gnocchi with lamb ragu, and the grain-fed beef sirloin with beetroot puree. The Banquet Menu, served sharing-style for the whole table, is a great way to sample a variety of the restaurant’s dishes while enjoying a night of fun and good food and wine with friends.
📍 Corner of Franklin and Furneaux Streets, Manuka, Griffith ACT 2603
Best for: no-fuss Italian comfort food
Set in Canberra’s city centre, Briscola offers a delightful combo of traditional Italian comfort food and a relaxed, cosy ambience. This local favourite serves up mouthwatering pizzas, handmade pasta, and an enticing antipasto platter perfect for sharing. The rich and creamy gnocchi al gorgonzola is a must-try, while the Piccante woodfire pizza – topped with hot Veneto salami and pickled chilli – fires up your dinner. The well-curated wine list includes local and Italian options. With friendly and attentive service, Briscola leaves you craving a return visit.
📍 60 Alinga Street, Canberra ACT 2601
Italian and Sons
Best for: hat-winning cuisine with wines to match
Indulge in the laid-back charm of Italian and Sons, Lonsdale Street’s beloved trattoria sibling to Mezzalira. Since 2009, this culinary gem has been delighting Canberra’s foodies with reimagined Italian classics, showcasing the best of local ingredients. Kick-start your meal with the house wood-baked rosemary focaccia and antipasti to share. The eatery’s daily changing main courses are a treat, but the handmade creative pasta – such as the tantalising tagliolini with crab, saffron, cherry tomatoes, and chilli – steals the show. The substantial wine list, one of the best in ACT, elevates your dining experience with classic and cutting-edge Italian wines.
📍 7 Lonsdale Street, Braddon ACT 2612
La Rustica By The Lake
Best for: unpretentious classics, including prawn pasta, and a laid-back vibe
Once a fixture of Kingston’s Kennedy Street, La Rustica relocated to the trendy Kingston Foreshore in 2018. Now running as La Rustica By The Lake, and offering harbourside views from its floor-to-ceiling windows, the family-owned restaurant continues to serve the rustic classics that made it popular. True to the owners’ Calabrian origins, there’s plenty of seafood on the menu. Cue calamari fritti, salmone alla rustica, and prawn pasta. If it’s pizza you’re after, the spot also has a whopping number of them, fresh from the oven.
📍 21 Eastlake Parade & Trevillian Quay, Kingston Foreshore,Kingston ACT 2604
Best for: fine dining
Since opening its doors in 1996 in Canberra’s iconic 1920s Melbourne Building, the elegant Mezzalira has been a go-to destination for Italian fine dining. With an unapologetically refined yet down-to-earth ambience, Mezzalira captures the essence of la dolce vita. A wood-fired oven and open salumi station further adds to the authentic vibe. A signature is the tortellini di zucca featuring pumpkin, ricotta, and leek tortellini. The prawn pasta with pinot grigio also comes highly recommended, or you can opt for the wood-roasted Bangalow pork cutlet. The tasting menu with matching wine is a beaut, as is the wine list, boasting a selection of Australian and Italian wines available by bottle, glass, and carafe.
📍 55 London Circuit, Canberra ACT 2601
Best for: dinner with friends
Another Italian trattoria set against the backdrop of Lake Burley Griffin on the Kingston Foreshore, Molto Italian is led by The Berra’s own Carlo Tosolini. The iconic Canberran restaurateur will warmly welcome you to his modern dining room, which features high ceilings, dark-wood tables, and an open kitchen and bar, complete with a wood-fire oven.
The bonzer choice of nibbles to share is guaranteed to whet your appetite: fried rice balls, wood-fired king prawns, pork short rib, Italian cheeses, mortadella, and smoked pancetta. You can then move on to your pizza or handmade pasta, available in gluten-free versions as well, or order the daily main. The wine list focuses on Italian and Australian labels – by the glass, carafe, or bottle – available at reasonable prices to keep the wine flowing as you catch up with friends over dinner.
📍 Unit 155, 43 Eastlake Parade, Kingston ACT 2604
SoLita Pizzeria & Pasta Bar
Best for: the only pizza in the city to be accredited by the Neapolitan Pizzaiuoli Association (APN)
The alluring scent of a woodfire pizza that emanates from the open kitchen is the sign you’ve found a piece of Italy on London Circuit. The casual interior decor adds to the laid-back ambience, and there’s outdoor seating if you’re looking to eat under the sun.
As suggested by its name, SoLita Pizzeria & Pasta Bar plates up a tantalising selection of pasta, with a few vegan sauce options and the possibility to opt for gluten-free pasta or wheat-based spaghetti and pizza. There are also starters and dishes to share, such as the sizzling hot wood-fired garlic and chilli prawns and the addictive cod croquettes with spicy n’duja dipping sauce. Featuring local and Italian varieties, the wine list is succinct enough to keep you hydrated while you enjoy the home-style cuisine and friendly service.
📍 Unit 12 Baileys Corner, 143 London Circuit, Canberra City ACT 2601
The Italian Place
Best for: seasonal classics highlighting Italian smallgoods and produce
Fuelled by its Sicilian founder Tony’s love for Italian smallgoods, produce, and vino, The Italian Place serves a seasonal menu of Italian classics in a theatrical black and red interior. Eat like an Italian and start your meal with the house antipasti, cured meats, and cheese to share, then opt for homemade fresh pasta as your starter before your main. Look out for the regional dinners highlighting fresh produce from a special region of Italy. Also, save some time to get lost in the alley of Tony’s warehouse-style Italian deli and market next door, where you can find some of the best produce in town.
📍 44/38 Mort Street, Braddon ACT 2612
Best for: a pizza that meets the recipe standards of the True Neapolitan Pizza Association (Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana AVPN)
Trecento’s name, meaning three hundred in Italian, is a nod to the 300-year-old recipe the eatery uses for its Neapolitan-style pizzas. And while the pizzas are on the very classic side, following the strict ingredient and recipe guidelines of the AVPN, the rest of the menu offers a contemporary take on traditional Italian dishes. The open kitchen takes centre stage in the 50-seat dining room and the atmosphere is what you’d expect of an Italian trattoria, relaxed yet bustling with activity.
📍 Unit 33/18 Flinders Way, Manuka, Griffith ACT 2603