Tonno, GloucesterInsider Tip: Check out Sunday Gravy—every Sunday night, the chef offers a special rustic menu featuring meatballs, fresh pasta, and whatever else is fresh and seasonal.
In the Works: A second location opening in Wakefield this summer.
2 Main St., Gloucester, 978-879-4795, tonnorestaurant.com
Angelo’s Ristorante & Wine Bar, StonehamStandout Qualities: Many of the dishes Angelo Caruso creates are from Northern Italy; you’ll find classics such as Lombatina Ripiena, a stuffed veal loin chop, and Tortelloni Piemontese, a ricotta-filled pasta served in a crème sauce. Offering the best available ingredients and locally grown herbs and vegetables, the menu changes seasonally and features generations of family recipes. The pastas, sauces, and mozzarella are all made in-house—making Angelo’s the epitome of authentic Italian.
237 Main St., Stoneham, 781-279-9035, angeloristorante.com
Lucia Ristorante, WinchesterWhat’s Unique: The restaurant’s vaulted ceiling is painted to look like the Sistine Chapel.
Fun Fact: The restaurant sometimes offers pasta-making classes.
13 Mt. Vernon St., Winchester, 781-729-0515, luciaw.in
Alto Forno, PeabodyStandout Qualities: Modern Italian food in a sexy space dripping with crystal chandeliers and tufted dining chairs.
Insider Tip: Grab a seat at the bar in front of the gorgeous Wood Stone oven, fired by hardwood and gas, to watch the chefs at work on perfectly crusty flatbreads.
41 Cross St., Peabody, 978-871-2942, altoforno.com
Giuseppe’s, NewburyportFun Fact: Owner Giuseppe Masia was born in Sardegna, Italy, and started his restaurant as a takeout-only shop.
257 Low St., Newburyport, 978-465-2225, giuseppesfinefood.com