Welcome fellow foodies!
My boyfriend and I have been on a quest to find the best Italian restaurants in Oahu. So naturally, we’ve made our way around Honolulu, Waikiki, and the North Shore, to find restaurants serving the most authentic flavors.
We’ve eaten at six different locations, tasted more dishes than we can count, and discovered the deliciousness of each establishment. Now we’re ready to break down our findings and share our top picks for the best Italian restaurants in Hawaii!
I’m ranking these 6 locations based on flavor, the freshness of ingredients, atmosphere, affordability, and overall experience.
From traditional pasta like ravioli to classic dishes like lasagna cooked with authentic ingredients as if you are dining in Italy- we tried it all! And after it was all said and done (and eaten!), we feel confident saying that these restaurants offer some of the most amazing Italian cuisines around.
Warning: After you sample a few dishes from one of these places you may never want to go back home again!
So what are you waiting for?
Let’s go try some delicious Italian food in Oahu!
Arancino di Mare – Best Italian Restaurant in Waikiki
With locations in Waikiki and at the Kahala Resort, Arancino is an award-winning restaurant serving authentic flavors of Naples. Arancino di Mare is on the Waikiki Marriott, with terrific views of Waikiki beach and the nearby coast from their dining area.
We’ve also eaten at Arancino’s Kahala location, which is just as good but with a slightly different menu.
From their extensive menu, we like to start with the Arancini Siciliani, served in a tangy tomato sauce. My boyfriend is a fan of their Lasagna made with a rich meat ragu, and I love the Penne Arrabiata served in a spicy house-made garlic tomato sauce with loads of fresh shrimp.
If you’re a seafood fan, try their fresh sea bass, grilled and served with terrific seasoning. Pair your meal with a side of crispy focaccia bread that goes well with everything on their menu.
We loved the flavorful Italian food at Arancino Di Mare, undoubtedly one of the best Italian restaurants in Oahu. Here’s why you’ll agree:
- You can enjoy terrific views of the Waikiki sunset from their outdoor seating.
- They have a gourmet dessert menu that’s unmissable.
- Service is friendly and efficient, and the waitstaff makes great suggestions based on your palate.
Address: 2552 Kalakaua Ave, Honolulu, Oahu, HI.
Buca di Beppo Italian Restaurant
If you’re going to Buca di Beppo in Honolulu, prepare to chow on Italian comfort food at its finest. Their dishes come loaded with cheese, delicious house-made sauces, and huge portions big enough to feed three or four people.
You want to try their Spicy Shrimp, golden-fried shrimp tossed in a spicy sauce of chilies & garlic, and Chicken Parmigiana topped with an excellent homemade marinara. Both dishes are house favorites for their delicious flavors and sauces.
Since their menu centers on pasta, and pizzas, make your way through them as each tastes better than the last. My boyfriend says the unholy mountain of cheese on their lasagna could actually make someone lactose intolerant!
Check out Buca di Beppo if you’re ever confused about where to eat Italian without breaking the bank. Here’s why they’re the best Italian restaurant in Oahu:
- They offer great catering services for large and small events and parties.
- Their small entrees cost between $20-30 and are a great value for money as they feed 3-4 people.
- Their service is timely and efficient.
Address: 1030 Auahi St Bay 1, Honolulu, Oahu, HI.
Taormina Sicilian Cuisine – Best Fine Dining Italian Menu in Oahu
Enjoy oceanside views from Waikiki Beach and the nearby volcano from Taormina Sicilian Cuisine’s scenic location. They’re one of the only restaurants in Honolulu serving cuisine from Sicily in Southern Italy. Their house chef prepares his award-winning fresh pasta and seafood entrees to perfection, which you’ll be at loath to miss.
Featured dishes on their menu include; Fettuccine Carbonara with tableside Truffle service, grilled Lamb Chops with a unique blend of Italian seasoning, and the Veal “Siciliana.” Taormina’s specialty dish is Uni Pasta (Sea Urchin), a Japanese-Italian favorite packed with fresh seafood flavors.
My boyfriend and I enjoyed their Chef’s Carpaccio, a seasonal combination of seafood, which was very well-seasoned, and served with a delicious reduction. Finish your meal with their light-as-air tiramisu, and you’ll be swooning for days.
We loved the fine-dining experience at Taormina, coupled with attentive service makes them the best Italian restaurant in Oahu.
- They have a prix-fixe four-course menu which is an excellent option for a celebration.
- You can enjoy live jazz music from your table and oceanside views.
- The restaurant is a white tablecloth setting, but casual attire is the norm here.
Address: 227 Lewers St R100, Honolulu, Oahu, HI.
La Cucina – Best Italian Restaurant in Honolulu
The small and unassuming places always pack the most authentic flavors, and that’s what La Cucina is. Located in the commercial Kakaako district of Honolulu, La Cucina stands surrounded by a lively town and market. However, their house chef prepares every dish on order with a limited wait staff, so get reservations beforehand.
Their menu has an excellent range of Italian classics, with favorites like the Osso Bucco, Trenette Bolognese, Taglionili Nero, Risotto Funghi, Frutti di Mare, and Bistecca. Another house specialty is the Black Lobster Ravioli in a decadent saffron-infused cream sauce.
We’re big fans of their Spaghetti Vongole served with sauteed shelled clams in a white wine sauce. My boyfriend and I are obsessed with their creamy cheesecake, which tastes incredibly rich, with a flamed creme brulee top.
La Cucina has a perfect menu, so whatever you order will taste heavenly. No wonder they’re the best Italian restaurant in Oahu.
- You can email the chef your order before going, and they will start preparing it as soon as you arrive.
- The ambiance here is classy and comfortable, perfect for couples night.
- They have valet parking, which is free if you leave after 8 pm!
Address: 725 Kapiolani Blvd Imperial Plaza, Honolulu, Oahu, HI.
Assaggio Bistro – Best Italian Restaurant in Kailua
You can find an Assaggio on nearly every island in Hawaii with its six locations, serving traditional Southern Italian cuisine and offering a terrific fine-dining experience. Even though they’re in a business center, you’ll need reservations as they’re a favorite spot amongst locals and tourists.
At Assaggio Bistro, the menu looks like a love poem to Italian food, with tremendous variety, so you won’t feel short of options. They have healthy substitutes of veggies to carbs for each dish and plenty of dishes aside from the usual pasta and pizza.
We tried the Chef’s special Chicken Arrabiata in a flavorful tomato sauce; the Jumbo Shrimp pan-fried with a light sauce, and the Sicilian Chicken. Everything tasted incredibly delicious, a whole feast in your mouth, and the huge portions left us plenty to take home.
Don’t let the outside turn you away, as Assaggio’s food and service have rated them often as the best Italian restaurant in Oahu.
- They cater well to big groups, so it’s a great spot for a celebration.
- Go for lunch or an early dinner, and you’ll get easy parking.
- The Chef often prepares delicious off-the-menu specials, so ask your server for those.
Address: 4346 Waialae Ave Ste A, Honolulu, Oahu, HI.
Romano’s Macaroni Grill – Best Italian Restaurant in Ala Moana
Romano’s is an Italian chain restaurant with branches all over America, but the food never compromises on quality or flavor, and you can taste authentic flavors wherever you try it. You can find it on the lively Ala Moana Boulevard in Waikiki and enjoy a walk-in experience without the hassle of reservations.
Their menu has excellent variety, and you can enjoy classic Italian fares like pasta, pizza, salads, and seafood. We tried their house favorite Chicken Marsala, breast pieces with mushrooms, a marsala wine sauce, and roasted garlic; and the Signature Truffle Mac n Cheese with fontina, smoked mozzarella, cheddar, and pecorino cheese.
The food is super flavorful here, packed with fresh Italian herbs and drizzled with extra virgin olive oil for a great finish. Try the range of their menu, especially the Italian thin-crust pizza, for a delicious treat.
You’ll love the food at Romano’s Macaroni Grill; filling and flavorsome, undoubtedly one of the best Italian restaurants in Oahu.
- Get a slice of their heavenly chocolate cake for dessert.
- They’re one of the best low-cost Italian restaurants that deliver quality and taste.
- Romano’s staff is friendly, and they have good service.
Address: 1450 Ala Moana Blvd Ste 4240, Honolulu, Oahu, HI.
Wrapping Up: The Best Italian Restaurants in Oahu
The Italian food in Oahu is terrific, and you’ll be glad to find an abundance of restaurants serving it. The chefs are award-winning and Michelin star holders in most places, so expect quality and flavors like none you’ve had before.
Hit up the places mentioned in this article for an authentic Italian dine-in experience, and you’ll thank me later.
Try Buca di Beppo and Romano’s Macaroni Grill if you’re looking for Italian comfort food at great prices.
Don’t miss Taormina Sicilian Cuisine and La Cucina if you’re looking for fine dining Italian and a gourmet meal.
Stop by Assaggio Bistro and Arancino di Mare for authentic Italian flavors all over Oahu.
You’ll find the best Italian food away from Italy only in Oahu!
Last Updated on February 12, 2023 by Brigitte