La Cantina Ristorante Italiano

3.9/5
Location
Information
Reviews
Details

Restaurant type

  • Bistro,

Cuisine type

  • Italian,

Dishes

  • Pizza,
  • Pasta,

Languages Spoken

  • English,
Location
60 Walnut St S, Hamilton, ON L8N 2L1
Useful Information

Opening Hours *Holiday hours

Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
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Rates:

  • $26 To $60,

Methods of Payment:

Ratings & Reviews - La Cantina Ristorante Italiano

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Sunshinegirl1234
By

Thumbs up! Overall experience was wonderful.

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Quality Food, Caring Preparation

Great food, interesting wines and beers, good service. Carefully prepared, good quality ingredients, always consistent. The hub and I come here occasionally, usually for the ceasar salad which I have to have with the grilled shrimp (too good!) and he has one of their spicy wood oven pizzas, which I steal a slice of. The wood oven pizza is soooooo much better. Sometimes we share the mussels, maybe because they are so good, and maybe because it gives us an excuse to have more of their delicious, chewy, crusty house made bread to soak up the sauce (don't want to leave that hanging around!).

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Restaurantica12
By

Perfectly al dente

Quite often I get a hankering for some pasta. I have tried other Italian restaurants in Hamilton, but none of them are nearly as tasty as La Cantina. My pasta was cooked to perfection, the fazzoletti was incredibly yummy (with a generous portion of mozzarella) and the wine list was fairly good considering the selections available in neighboring restaurants. I have only three complaints 1. They do not do take orders for take out over the phone. As I can understand how this might be the result of past situations, I am not a huge fan of hearing "it is against our policy" 2. Although my pasta has always been cooked perfectly, my dining partner (on several occasions) has received their pasta practically raw. 3. The service is nothing to brag about. On any one of my visits, the server has neither been engaging or informative. These days, a dining experience should consist of a little more than dropping off the plates and disappearing. Overall, I love visiting La Cantina and will continue being a frequent diner :)

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Restaurantica12
By

Never Again

Will never go again The pasta was swimming in sauce, they say on the menu 1 kilo of mussels (2.2 lbs) Not, looks more like one pound the facioletto(calzone) was cooked on the outside but ingredients inside not, cold sauce this is not fine dining, this is fine Dive......they have no clue about Italian food..

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Restaurantica12
By

Gone downhill! There are too many other restaurants in Hamilton to choose from... this isn't one of them. People who write these positive reviwes have no clue what Italian food is.We have been to la Cantina a few times times last nite really topped the negative list...I ordered il Facioletto which is really a Calzone the dough was burned and the inside which was with boccongini and raw tomatoes and smotherd with cold tomato sauce Number two Disaster, my wife orderd Penne Arrabiate when we saw the pasta made us both ARRABIATE.the penne were swimming in sauce accompanied with very chewie challots a real MANGIA CAKE DISH,THE PASTA VERY PRICEY AND SO WERE THE MUSSELS ON THE MENU IT READS 1 KILO OF MUSSELLS THATS 2.2 LBS NOT EVEN NEAR IT.. WHEN PLEPLE SAY THE PIZZA AND THE PASTA IS OUT OF THIS WORLD...THAT MEANS THEY HAVENT BEEN AT A TRUE FINE DINING ITALIAN RESTAURANTE ( TRY LITTLE ITALY ON COLLEGE STREET, THAN YOU CAN REALLY SAY THE PIZZA AND THE PASTA IS OUT OF THIS WORLD AND NOT PRICEY.. ENOUGH SAID, iIWOULD BE HERE ALL NIGHT WRITING..THIS IN NOT FINE DINING, I CAN SAY THIS IS A FINE DIVE.....

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Restaurantica12
By

Delicious!

Lovely authentic Italian cuisine! Great Service. Love that you can also order a loaf of their incredible bread to go. We will be back lots and lots!!

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Restaurantica12
By

Surprised at the bad reviews

I'm more than a little surprised at the bad reviews on here...we go to La Cantina at least once a week (and have been for the last 11 years) and have experienced very few glitches along the way. I guess it's true what they say, people only ever comment on the negative stuff! Don't be put off by bad reviews, this is a GREAT place to go lunch or dinner and they have been doing a great job for a long time...love their food and their service.

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Restaurantica12
By

Great Place

We have passed by this place for the longest time and finally decided to give it a try. We were glad we did! The restaurant itself is well decorated and has a relaxing setting . Our waitress was genuinely friendly which was refreshing for a change. The food was top notch.We started with the cesar salads which were a lil pricey but in all fairness they did give good portions. We followed up with the san marco pizza which was out of this world.Highly recommended! We also both had the house red wine which was satisfactory. A really great place.

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Restaurantica12
By

Wood-Oven Pizza on a Cold Night

We dined at La Cantina for the first time last night, despite living in its immediate environs for over a year. The wood-fired hearth beckoned, and it was damn cold outside. I must agree with other commenters that the reception at the hostess desk echoed the winter's chill we were trying to avoid; despite having called to ask for a reservation (and being told just to come right in), we were asked, with a rather blasé manner, if we wanted to sit in the "fine dining" section, or in the "casual" section. Having no notification of this on the phone, we were taken aback by the question, and asking for clarification didn't help much as it was pretty certain that the hostess had pegged us as "casual" types. Which turned out fine, since we wanted to bask in the heat of the wood oven, anyway. We were seated by the kitchen prep. area, where the servers seemed to be having a little side conversation to themselves, and asked to be moved to another table, which the hostess obliged. Once seated, however, the server was generous in providing answers to our questions, and in offering suggestions to shape our ordering. There was a suitably large wine selection, and our server enthusiastically invited us to return for a special wine promotion featuring my favourite varietal, which, sadly, was not available that night. The generous pour of the wine was made more pleasant by the knowledgeable service. We hardly made a dent in the extremely ample order of spaghetti carbonara, cooked rather "al dente", as we were already full on the house-made bread basket and margherita pizza appetizer. The Carbonara was light and well-flavoured with pancetta, although the raw onion bits distracted a bit from the overall dish. The pizza was good, with a mostly toothsome crust, topped with chewy gobs of bocconcini cheese, although the pizza bottom was soggy from the fresh tomato topping. Overall, however, the atmosphere and proximity makes me want to try out different menu options. Despite the issues with service and minor food issues, La Cantina will likely be a place to visit again; hopefully they will surprise us.

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Restaurantica12
By

fabulous!

finally made it there after 10 years of recommendation. only been on the fine dining side and cannot wait to try the other side, may even try it out tomorrow with a girlfriend! i work in the industry and LOVE to eat out so i am not easily really impressed but wow. our server was fantastic, very attentive, funny and knowledgeable of the menu and wine list. the menu is great, pasta tastes fresh and the fish tastes very fresh also. the dining room is beautiful and very comfortable, especially loved the little pieces of history on the walls by the restrooms and around the restaurant. thanks la cantina for a fantastic evening, perfect way to unwind and treat each other at the end of a long week.

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Restaurantica12
By

Gem in the Hamilton Downtown

I have been to La Cantina twice now and was very pleased (in all aspects) both times. The atmosphere is extremely pleasant. I found myself in two situations. First on a romantic date with my boyfriend, secondly out to an early dinner in a party of 4. The evening atmosphere is perfect, with a fabulous ambiance. The afternoon atmosphere is comfortable and social, as the sun is still out. The first time I went I ordered a pasta dish with cream sauce and salmon. I can't for the life of me remember any of the dish names as I don't speak Italian! The salmon pasta was amazing. The cream sauce had a perfect consistency, and the salmon came in small shards spread through the sauce. The fish itself had a slightly smokey, but appealing salmon taste. My boyfriend ordered pasta primavera with cream sauce, which I almost enjoyed more than my own meal. There is a fantastic variety of vegetables, and again, perfect consistency in the cream sauce. The afternoon visit was also enjoyable. Everyone immensely enjoyed their dishes (all four I cannot remember). I personally had a dish with whole wheat pasta, goat cheese, and roasted vegetables. Odd variety of vegetables, but still very tasty. A little too dry with the sauce but none-the-less delicious. Service during the evening visit was exceptional. The waitress was extremely attentive despite her having several tables on a busy night. Would (and will) visit again. Highly recommended. An oasis of pleasantry in an otherwise rather unwelcoming downtown.

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Restaurantica12
By

haven't been in a little while but....

Haven`t been in a little while, but the service has always been good in the past, as well as the food. I really enjoy the salad with the cranberries in it! And the brushetta calabrese is always a must for me! Nice decor and relatively good prices! Good cappuccino and desserts as well.

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Restaurantica12
By

I took a group of 17 here for a business function. The food was outstanding. Everyone enjoyed their meals. The staff was pleasant and paid attention to our needs. I will definitely go back!

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

In our opinion this is the best Italian restaurant in Hamilton. Food was great, atmosphere relaxing and the waiter (Italian accent) was a 10 out of 10. We have been here several times and it's never disappointing.

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 5/5
Service: 5/5
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Restaurantica12
By

This is the third time I have gone to the fine...

This is the third time I have gone to the fine dining side of the rest and the third time I have found it to be average at best. You are paying fine dining prices for average food. The casual side with the pizza and pasta (which are both good) is worthwhile but the fine dining food is DEF NOT. We had steak which was nothing special and paid $38 for a rack of lamb which was about 60% fat. I will not be returning.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 2/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Always so so so good. Great food, pizzas and...

Always so so so good. Great food, pizzas and salads cannot be passed over, great pastas and entrees always very good. Nice to see an independent doing so well for so long.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

I have been here a few times over the years and...

I have been here a few times over the years and it never disappoints. La Cantina is the type of restaurant where you can enjoy an inexpensive yet filling lunch or an extravagant all out dinner. I have gone in as a party of three for just over $30 and had a party of two be closer to $100. Their food is excellent and the smell of the fresh wood oven is amazing. The thin crust pizza's and the fruit & nut salad are some of my favorites!

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4/5
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Restaurantica12
By

This was not my first dining experience at...

This was not my first dining experience at LaCantina, however it is the first time we decided to take the kids. Seeing as there were five of us, my husband called ahead to reserve a table, but was told that they do not take reservations. When we arrived (a very neatly put together family of five, including three children ages 10 -12), what struck me was the look I received from the 'ladies' at the front desk. One of them asked if we wanted to eat at the bar or fine dining, I asked how long the wait would be for fine dining and she said one hour. I said we would wait, and she, ever so rudely looking at my kids then down at me said 'YOU WILL WAIT?!, IT MAY BE LONGER THAN AN HOUR'. Looking to either side of her at the other two women behind the desk while huffing, she reluctantly shuffled around for a pen to get my name when I confirmed my position to wait. Once she had our name down, the 10-15 mintue wait for a spot at the bar while waiting for our table was almost unbearable. I found it very uncomfortable to stand there while the three 'hosts' avoided my gaze and appeared as though they wanted us to leave. My children stood along side of us demonstrating a much higher level of sophistication than the three women behind the counter could ever hope to muster up together. Once we got to the bar, things improved, the food and service were good, the pizza was delicious and Anthony at the bar was excellent. Once our table at 'fine dining' was ready, we headed over, as I reminded the kids to be on their best behavior. The food was exceptional, the wine was perfect, the creme brulee was right behind the best I'd ever had. The waitress was knowledgeable, patient and polite. Much to my surprise, I found many people in the fine dining section did not look dressed for a 'fine dining' evening. There was a crying baby in a car seat, which I could tollerate as a parent, but usually not what you'd expect to find in a place such as this. It is unfortunate to have such a lousy start to what could have been a perfect evening. The waiters have to work extra hard to undue the damage the hosts create as they welcome (or NOT) you in.

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 1/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Consistently delicious

So good I invariably order the same things every time, but love tasting off others' plates. Friends from East Coast who lived in Hamilton for two years became loyal customers and are currently bemoaning the lack of "anything like La Cantina" in Halifax now that they have moved back. Special mention goes to the Bruschetta with sundried tomato puree and goat cheese. Man, I have to find out who the goat cheese supplier is as it is smooth and unctous without the weird aftertaste I personally find MOST supermarket goat cheeses to have. Fazzoletto is also outstanding as are all their gigantic salads. Pizza I know to be excellent and the gnocchi gorgonzola is out of this world. Only quibble is noise during busy times a rather plain shrimp dish and overpriced wine by the glass. Not for nothing it was mentioned in Where to Eat in Canada by Gourmet Magazine. Congratulations on consistently great food!

Atmosphere: 4/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 3/5
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Restaurantica12
By

Great as Always

Hands down, best place to eat in Hamilton and Toronto. Good food, although the menu does need some updating. Good service on the casual side, I've never eaten on the fine dining side, but the menu is available if you ask your waitress.

Atmosphere: 5/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 5/5
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