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Donatello - 29 Reviews - 232 N Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa, FL - Celeb Hangout Reviews - Phone (813) 875-6660

Donatello

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232 N Dale Mabry Hwy (at Kennedy Boulevard)
Tampa, FL 33609
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(813) 875-6660
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Donatello - Tampa, FL
Donatello - Tampa, FL
Donatello - Tampa, FL

Reviews

( 11 )
( 8 )
( 5 )
( 1 )
( 4 )

Best

My sister and I recently dined at Donatello for the first time and were wowed by everything! I had heard of Donatello's and passed it many times on Dale Mabry but never thought to...

Worst

I really wanted to like Donatello; however, the combination of good-but-not-above-average food and the astronomical prices charged for it dragged it down.\r \r I'd like to think...

Great food 1/5/2012

Had a excellent meal, But a little on the pricey side...\r Otherwise awesome! more

Authentic and AmaZing Italian! 7/13/2010

My sister and I recently dined at Donatello for the first time and were wowed by everything! I had heard of Donatello's and passed it many times on Dale Mabry but never thought to stop. So glad we did. Started with a bottle of Amarone- best one i've ever had..and a caprese salad. Sis ordered Petto Di Pollo Donatello\r (a chicken, artichoke and mushroom dish with the most flavorful sauce on top) I went with a waiter's suggestion~a chef's special, grilled shrimp and scallops with sauteed garlic and spinanch with another phenomenal sauce on top! Speaking of waiter's, Carmello was extremely attentive and charming. We recieved incredible service by the entire staff without the stuffiness that usually comes with this level of service. We followed our entrees with homemade tiramisu and mudslides on the rocks. I was so impressed! We also learned they have private dining and look forward to coming back with a large party! On our way out, one of the owners shook our hands and we left with the goregeous pink roses that graced our table. Thank you Donatello! We'll be back! Ciao! Pros: Incredible food, warm & beautiful ambience, stellar service Cons: A little pricey, but worth every penny. more

Outstanding Italian Fine Dining 2/2/2010

You can always count on Donatello when you're celebrating a special occasion or enjoying a special meal. The food is outstanding and authentic, the service is impeccable, making for an excellent dining experience. Pros: Exceptional Service, Food more

Great Venue, Amazing food, Excellent Host! 1/28/2010

Donatello’s is such a great venue to have either a romantic dinner with that special someone or have a 40 people successful dinner like the one we just had. Many thanks to all that participated in this event, service was good, food was amazing… thank you again! more

Fantastic Dinner with First Class Service! 1/28/2010

We recently had another great dinner at the legendary Donatello. This continues to be a great place for anniversary's, special occasions or nice romantic dinner for two. Don't miss the lounge featuring live jazz and blues music! This has been one of Tampa's best local restaurants for many years and continues to be first class! Pros: Don't miss the lounge featuring live jazz and blues music more

A best restaurants of Italy 5/16/2009

I came to Tampa to visit. I am Italian, a friend told me to go to Donatello. I am happy I followed her advice because at Donatello the food you eat is as good as you can eat in the best restaurants of Italy. I had agnolotti, hand made pasta with spinach stuffing, and you could taste the texture the pasta has when it is really hand made, not from some packages. My husband ate ossobuco and he was really happy with it. I t was served with risotto zafferano and it was juicy and tender and tasty. We loved the napoleon cake and the cream brule with rasberries. Our waiter was corteous and efficient, kind and professional. The gentleman at the door a very good host. I'll be back. Pros: excellent food, service, Cons: too good more

Great host 4/24/2009

We have been eating to Donatellos everytime we vocation in Florida. This year experience was very dissapointing. The waiter appeared annoyed that we did not order an appetizer. When my husband declined the wine list the waiter asked him if he suffered from Hepatitic C? We could not believe our ears and asked each other if we heard him correctly. Than the waiter would not even come to our table and completely ignored us for the rest of the evening talking nonsense with customers next to us. Very dissapointing. Pros: Good food, nice host Cons: Terrible service, rude waiters more

Ruined a Birthday Party 9/15/2008

Five couples went to celebrate a birthday. We had to wait forever for service. Food and drinks were finally delivered at the same time. Tiny portions -- sushi thin prime rib, pasta with marinara sauce was dry (for $23 and no salad even included). Because it was a birthday, one slice of cake was delivered to each couple (didn't even ask if we wanted it!) then charged $12.00 per slice! Had to wait forever for the bill. One of the worst dining experiences in my life! Cons: Horrible service, teeny portions for the price, food not good, wait for the check more

Ridiculous 6/10/2008

I went there believing in the authentic northern italian sign and was sooo disappointed with pretty much everything. It looks like a ruined set from a frank sinatra movie.. outdated, not even clean, the food was below average and the prices make no sense at all. We were 2 people and paid almost $100 for not even dessert or coffee, not even appetizers and just 2 glasses of wine.\r \r I am half italian and lived and travelled in many places in the world to be fooled that easily!! the highlight of the night was the owner (whom I believe is the one that greets you after you come in and when you leave) eating people's food while he was serving it next to the dessert station they have over there!! He did it more than once!!! such a joke this place... if you know how to eat well or know real good italian food don't even go to or try this place, you will feel robbed!! Pros: haven't found them yet Cons: bad food, too expensive and ugly interiors more

Unimpressed--not very good, horrifically overpriced 4/23/2008

I really wanted to like Donatello; however, the combination of good-but-not-above-average food and the astronomical prices charged for it dragged it down.\r \r I'd like to think that I'm familiar with good Italian food, and have had my fair share of it, some of the best of it in the Tampa area (try Casa Ludovico in Palm Harbor). The food at Donatello was good, I can't deny that--but it wasn't great. I had the fried mozzarella appetizer and the spaghetti carbonara the night I went. The mozzarella tasted and looked like it came out of a freezer--it had that distinct chewiness and melting pattern that only comes from processed cheese. Real mozzarella doesn't melt like that. The carbonara was good, and the pasta perfectly cooked, which I have to commend, but it was oversauced, used bacon instead of pancetta (and not very good bacon either, astonishing for a restaurant that claims to be authentic, even moreso given the prices), and cost $28 for a rather small portion. We had the tiramisu for dessert, which was a dense, soggy mess, nothing like the light (in texture, not in calories!) and delectable dessert that it should be.\r \r Furthermore, I got the impression that it was the kind of placed that charged a lot because they thought the could--a see and be seen kind of place, not a place that had high prices because the food deserved it.\r \r I also found the setting dingy and depressing, with everything looking like it was 20 years old and hadn't been cared for at all.\r \r Service was, however, impeccable, I have to grant them that.\r \r Overall, I came away with a very bad feeling from the place. I won't be going back, and feel like I wasted an evening in having gone there. Not to mention $70 for a small, average-tasting meal. Pros: Service Cons: Average food, astronomical prices, dingy & dirty atmosphere more

Don't go on Valentine's Day 2/16/2007

My husband and I went for Valentine's Day. We chose Donatello's primarily for the ""romantic"" atmosphere, but our table for two was placed right next to another table for two, as were most of the tables in the room. Not very private or romantic when the couple at the next table can shake your hand without moving in their chair. It also created problems for the waiters, since they had to walk around and behind the chairs, bumping us as they reached across to get to each couple. The main problem, though, was that we were ignored once we had been served our appetizer. No refilling our drinks, nothing, for about an hour, as we watched the table next to us be served their entree, eat it, and order dessert and finish it, with still no dinner in sight for us. The other couple had ordered at the same time we had. If our waiters had bothered to check on our drinks, we could have inquired about our dinner to inform them of the delay, but we were apparently invisible to them at that point. Eventually, our waiter came by and offered us coffee and dessert since we were ""all done, finito."" We then informed him that we were still waiting on dinner, and he sent someone to check on it. After some time, another server told us that the chef had ""set aside"" our orders for some unknown reason, and they would be ready right away, since they were ""fast meals that didn't take very long to prepare."" Finally, the food came, and it was good, but not outstanding, and certainly not worth the excessive wait. They did offer us free dessert once we complained, but then we had to complain again when they brought the dessert and seemed to have forgotten about our coffee. We didn't receive the rose at the end, but probably because we were obviously ready to go after the long wait. The food was good, but they were obviously overbooked for the holiday, and for $100 (even with 2 free desserts), I've had better food, as well. Pros: Decor, authentic Italian feel Cons: Poor service, overpriced food more

SECOND BEST ITALIAN RESTAURANT IN THE WORLD 7/10/2006

It was a hard decision but after a lot of thought, I had to rank Donatello as the second best Italian restaurant that I have ever eaten in over 50 years of fine dining.\r \r The best you ask? Well that would have to be Marcello Gavi's little place in Portofino, Italia. \r \r But if you can't afford the air fare and the time to get there and back, I'd recommend Donatello in Tampa, Florida. \r \r Where to begin? From the time that the host greets you at the door until he kisses your wife and hands her a rose when you leave you are treated like a king. The service is prima! Next, try a Negroni with a slice of orange while you peruse the menu. The food is fantastic . . . my favorites being a Tagiatelle Kathy, followed by a hearts of palm salad and then one of the Vitello dishes (you can't go wrong but my pick is the Puncinella). This should be accompanied by a selection from their outstanding listing of wines . . . my favorite for this meal would be the Nardi Brunello di Malticado. \r \r Finally, a little dolce . . . the profitaroles are the last word in decadence. Then coffee and grappa. Basta! That's enough! That's Donatello!! It's wonderful!!! Pros: Fantastic food, first-class service, lovely ambience Cons: Tough to get in on weekends especially after Bucs games. more

Disappointing 5/14/2006

First off, My wife loved it. It's only fair I share that important caveat. She is the reason we ate at Donatello's. Wait in line for the Valet. Once you enter be prepared for perfect service and a very hefty price tag for it. What happens in-between is what was disappointing to me. My Salad lacked dressing, My Lamb was tough, dry and bland. My wine and water glasses were never empty. Service was never an issue. If anything, The service was perfect. I would think for these prices, someone would take notice of the stained walls and floors. I'm confident the romantic ambiance included lead paint. Our wine selection was taken to the next level when we realized our table lacked stability. I give the company I shared a perfect 10. The service was a 10 as well. The food was a 5 and parking was a definate 0. Pros: Service, Ambiance Cons: Parking, Selection, Price more

Good to go once, okay for special occasions: 5/11/2006

Donatello's offers what it says it does: Traditional Northern Italian Cuisine. They have a wonderful scene. It's a great experience to go once. The food, albeit delicious, is the same as you'd receive from any restaurant (or grandmother) in Italy. Italian cuisine is by nature, simple and rustic. At these prices, I would expect expert chefs constantly churning out original creations, putting their own twists on the cuisine, and creating a more unique ride for your palatte. My advice: Go once. If you enjoy the food, and can live without the atmosphere; find an italian butcher and tune in to the ""Molto Mario"" program on the food network. He's an acclaimed chef whom studied in Italy and his program teaches you how to duplicate this type of cuisine at home. Italian cuisine by itself is very simple, I enjoyed Donatello's, but would like to see some innovation for that pricetag. Pros: The best service, Great atmosphere, Romantic Cons: Price, value, Food too simple more

Best Italian in Tampa by far... 1/4/2006

Growing up with an Italian Grandmother and near the north end of Boston ( Little Italy) i am very picky when it comes to italian. Until i tried Donatellos i thought tampa was void of any real italian food. Donatello's is the place to go if you are an italian food lover.... Pros: Food, Prices, Service Cons: Valet Parking only more

A Bit Full of Themselves 12/20/2005

The kitchen is very good to excellent but unfortunately the resturant has two serious flaws First, none of the wines we requested matched the wine list. Be careful, we sent back a Brunello which was not the vintage on the list as well as a Russo, the same situation. Both wines brought to us were inferior years not the rather good years appearing on the list. When I asked why the wines were not the ones on the list I was told that's just what their supplier gave them, not a suitable answer for wines priced in the vicinity of $100. The deserts must come from somewhere else, frozen. The perfiteroles were hard as a rock and not edible. To their credit we were not charged for the desert. the waiter are rather snooty but I think some patrons like that when paying these prices, I prefer the right wine. Pros: Kitchen, Ambiance Cons: Wines, Desserts more

Blown Away 10/1/2005

I dined here with a group of business partners and was astounded at the quality of the food and the amazing ambience tucked away in this unassuming building in downtown Tampa. Take your wife, your girlfriend, or whoever's within reach and enjoy this total experience. Just make sure your wallet's up to the task. Worth every penny. more

Overrated 5/4/2005

The food was certainly not worth the price. I've had much better Italian food. However, the service was very good. Pros: Good Service Cons: Expensive more

Fine Dining At Its Best 5/25/2004

If you want to be pampered and treated like a king plus enjoy the finest Italian dishes in Tampa you have to get to Donatello's. So easy to find just off Rte 275 on Dale Mabry south and worth the ride. The sauces are rich and creamy, the wine choices are perfect and the service is outstanding but you do not feel rushed or hovered over. The pasta is tender and fresh along with the salads. The presentations of each course is creative and impressive. Desserts to die for. Pros: Outstanding dishes, Easy to find, Great service more

Italian at its best 2/12/2004

The food is absolutely fabulous, the service is the best in the area, however, the waiters can be a bit snobby, though I can't imagine why?! The atmosphere is reminiscent of Italy. The menu is strictly ala carte and a bit expensive, but well worth it. If you like to look for local and national celebrities, this is the place to be. Pros: Excellent service, Fabulous Food, Great atmosphere Cons: , snobby waiters, everything ala carte more
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Menu for Donatello




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Understatement rules here in every facet but the rich Northern Italian dishes served to stars and star-gazers.

Editorial

  • The Scene
    It's the kind of joint you'd expect to see in a mafia flick. Dark wood and burgundy accent the decor. A white baby grand sits in the lounge. Quiet diners dress tastefully with...

  • 8/14/2003 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Mon-Fri 11:30am- 2:30pm, 6pm-11pm Sat-Sun 6pm-11pm
  • Payments:

    Master Card, Discover, Diner's Club, American Express, Visa, Cash
  • Neighborhoods:

    Northwest, North Bon Air
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