We are DTLA's premier power lunch or per theater date spot! Join us for a truly authentic italian dining experience, the likes of which will delivery your senses strait back to Tuscany.
While the food and service are always very good, getting food from the kitchen can be a problem. We have been coming to Vespaio for years. Getting food was once a big problem, then it got better, now its a bit of a problem again.
We dined at Vespaio pre-theater on a Tuesday. We have never seen the restaurant as busy -- people were lined up and trying to get in without reservations. The hostess did her best to keep order, and the staff went through Herculean efforts that night to serve everyone. Our server, John, also did a phenomenal job in taking care of us, despite being way over-taxed. We were out on time and even enjoyed the Bomboloni dessert (really fun and delish). We shared four dishes - the Burrata, Scallops, Artichoke Carpaccio and the Tagliatelle Verde. Everything came out well prepared and tasted exceedingly fresh. I would have preferred the steak in the Tagliatelle a less well done - just a preference. It was on the medium to well-side. And we would have preferred to have a quieter evening and table … but that couldn't be helped.
We had a concert to attend at 8:00 pm. Therefore, we made a reservation for 6:00 pm, arrived on time and were promptly seated. Obviously understaffed, everything took very long. We were not served our main course until 7:35, after we had advised our waiter we had to leave by 7:45 at the latest in order to get to the concert on time. The manager apologized and offered to comp our entrees. However, the restaurant advertises its proximity to the Walt Disney Concert Hall, and they should have been prepared for customers that had a concert commitment. It seems they assigned one waiter to our section of at least 8 tables, and must have been short staffed in the kitchen as well. We thought a reservation two hours before the start of the concert would be plenty of time to enjoy dinner before the show, but instead all was rushed at the end and made for a very disappointing dining experience.
The food was hot, fresh, and delicious. The service was quick, polite, and our server was very knowledgeable about the food and the specials. The ambience was quiet for a large restaurant and quite lovely.
Do not recommend and will not go back. We were asked if we wanted water instead of automatically being served water. This place is a bit on the pricy side, so this was a surprise to me. After ordering, we were asked if we wanted bread. We said yes and found a surprise $3.50 charge for it on the bill without ever being forewarned. I decided on one of the specials- an entree salad with arugula and scallops. Weird combo, but I figured I’d give it a try. I wanted a cup of minestrone but they only had a bowl size, so I got it. The $12 soup was like a vegetable soup with a watery tomato base. My mom makes MUCH better minestrone and she isn’t Italian. I also had to request Parmesan to put on top, because it wasn’t offered. The salad was actually decent. The service was decent (other than the aforementioned issues), but the ambiance was lacking.
Food was just ok
Valentines. The restaurant seatings were very cramp and didn’t provide that much privacy or intimacy with the layout! Basically, you’re literally a foot to foot and half from rubbing elbows with the people sitting on either side of you, thus my overall rating of a 4 stars.
Took 20 minutes to get water and a waiter to attend us. Only two waiters working the entire patio area - very understaffed and they didn’t look happy. Ordered a goat cheese roasted beet arugula salad that did not have dressing, and overdone scallops wrapped in burnt guanciale bacon for an appetizer. The main course was the veal costeletta chop which was hard and gamey, and overcooked pasta pappardelle Chianti with wild boar ragu - the ragu was fine but disappointed with the pasta. The only great thing was the desert- mousse and tiramisu - but ordered a coffee and espresso that never came but was charged for. Would not recommend this place for anyone that wants fine dining or Italian food. It was my wife’s birthday and I would not recommend for a special occasion. Felt like the kitchen was not tasting any of their food this evening.
Food was off the mark: pasta was hard and not adequately cooked...fish was over-cooked. Service was rushed
Horrendous service. We got seated (aka pointed to a seat) and then left alone, without menus, for 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile half of the large table next to us blasted YouTube videos on their phones. Things continued to be slow and awkward from there. The food was good, but way overpriced. With all the other great restaurants in DTLA, we won't be visiting again.
Valentine’s Day dinner
Good, just had higher expectations.
Wonderful food and great service even though it was a busy Valentine's day evening! Loved the Guanciale wrapped scallop appetizer, and both the veal costoleta and filet mignon were well prepared and delicious. But, don't leave without trying the Coconut cake with cream cheese filling, it was superb! I wanted to bring another slice home, but decided it just means we'll have to go back for dinner again soon!
Food wast very good and service was okay. Would not go again.
Terrific fixe-prix Valentine's Day dinner- loved the goat cheese and beet arugula salad and whole filleted bronzed Branzino with perfectly seasoned spinach; Risotto with wild mushroom was buttery and luscious. Ample portions were served and included focaccia bread as precursor. Great wine selection. Dessert-an assortment of dipped dolci- was just ok. Service was perfect. I would have preferred sitting in the main dining space as the chairs in the area adjacent to the take out counter (to the right of the host area) were a wooden folding type and just felt very casual. Would specify with reservations another time.
Honestly this is my 4th time eating here and the last 2 times were not up to par with what I would expect of this restaurant. This visit the tables were situated so closely together I felt like I was dining with strangers. The food was fine but nothing to rave about. It took forever to get our check after giving my credit card. It took forever last time as well. I had to get to work so it was so stressful. The servers were more attentive this evening. But I am honestly done coming here for a meal.
It’s expected that Valentine’s Day will be busy, but it took a very long time to get each item out. We had appetizers, entrees, and dessert, and we were there for nearly two hours (and not by choice). My recommendation is to hire more staff for a day like Valentine’s Day. The staff looked frantic and exhausted, and they were doing their best. They were simply overwhelmed.
We went to Vespaio on Valentine's day--a hectic day anywhere. We were late, but they managed to seat us. The drinks were good, the service was excellent, the food was delicious. And we got to the Disney Hall on time.
Excellent food ! Tables for two were two close to each other , no privacy overloaded with people .
Tasty and very convenient before a concert or show, though wait staff understandably harried because of pressure to get folks where they need to go on time. Festive feeling for a night on the town.
Excellent food and superior service as always. First time having a business lunch there and it was perfect.
Our go to restaurant when we go downtown to the theater. Good Italian food. Fair pricing and good service.
Sunday was a particularly bad day for the restaurant. We’ve eaten there many times before a theatre production and the food and service has been wonderful. However, last Sunday was an exception. The food was good, but the service was not. I’m hoping this was just an off day and that this waiter will get better training.
Excellent food as usual & nice service. Great location & comfortable seating
all in our party enjoyed the evening. our waiter was Italian and pleasant. The maitre D was helpful when service was needed. we had a variety of dishes from appetizers and soups to fish and pasta and meat entrees to desserts. we chose the restaurant because of its reviews, its reasonable prices, and its proximity to the theatres nearby.
We have been to Vespaio six or eight times in the last year and have really loved it. The food is quite good and the service has been impeccable. This time we had a different experience. Our waitress, Anne, was friendly and efficient. Unfortunately, there must have been problems in the kitchen which caused our appetizers and salads not to be delivered. After a fairly long wait, out entrees were brought to the table. We pointed out that we had ordered appetizers and salads and they were quickly brought . The head waiter spoke with us and was appropriately apologetic but nonetheless, we didn't have the opportunity to enjoy our food in a more relaxed, less rushed manner before having to leave for the theater. In recognizing their error, the head waiter comp'd our appetizers/salads.
In addition, to this issue, we noticed that the restaurant was unusually busy and the wait staff were frantically running around in order to respond to all the service needs being asked of them. It wasn't clear whether they were short staffed or there were other issues going on. Regardless, this created an atmosphere where it was unnecessarily distracting and made our experience less enjoyable.
We will certainly return to Vespaio in hopes that this was just a one time occurrence.
Best music center choice for dinner. Great menu, wonderful breads but extra charge, good soup in big bowls, you may want to not want both soap and appetizers unless you're really hungry. Last night's special was fettucine with shrimp, not a lot of shirmp and shirmp pieces too small which made for a poor presentation, but good otherwise. They could cut down on some of the extra table so it's less crowded, but still a great choice for dinner.
Ate here before evening Opera. Food always good. If you book at 5pm you can make the lecture.
Vespaio is a beautiful restaurant with fabulous food but I have to admit that our waiter was nowhere to be seen for most of the evening. He never came by to ask if we wanted anything and when I wanted a glass of wine I had to ask the hostess for it because our waiter was nowhere to be found for a very long time. Maybe he had too many tables to attend to but we never even saw him. Otherwise the dinner food and drink were delicious.
Very good food. Great location. Many choices on the menu.
Amazing food, attentive service, lovely place.
Loves the coziness of the restaurant and the friendly, attentive service. The food was very good. I felt like I was in Italy eating in a family run restaurant. It felt very homey but classy.
Very good restaurant in the Music Center area. The food ranges from good to excellent. The service ranges the same. It's always a very pleasant experience at the least.
Food was too salty, otherwise good. Salads were much bigger than pictured on Yelp.
Very quiet during Super Bowl. Just what we wanted. Food is always excellent and service was good.
The staff was amazing and the decor was very relaxing. We had the beef carpaccio, seared tuna, and a pepperoni pizza. The beef carpaccio was outstanding, however, I was a little confused about the pizza. They have a wood-burning pizza oven that they obviously spent a great deal of money on........So my question is why don't they use it? The pizza toppings tasted good, but the crust was less than stellar. My final thought, please use your wood-burning pizza oven and the crust would have been amazing.
Way overpriced for the quality. Ordered the tagliatelle and it like glue. The restaurant was very busy the night i went, every table was taken, so that could have explained the "adequate" service
Menu says "Wild cod grilled with potatoes and ......." served "wild cod grilled with french fries and ....." If you serve fish and chips, just call it fish and chips on the menu and one would know what will be served
Lunch before afternoon concert at Disney Hall. Relatively quick service and convenient. Nice ambience.