Best Restaurants

Out of all the restaurants in a city, 10Best narrows the options to those places with the most appeal and the best reputations. We offer carefully vetted selections to let you explore New Haven dining on your own. If time is really tight, though, and you don't have the leisure to look through all our offerings, we present our New Haven Best Restaurants list. Here, we distill the best businesses down to a special selection of ten. These places promise a stellar experience and a taste of the city that you just can't miss.

7 Bentara
This sophisticated restaurant is earning an excellent reputation for serving the best Malaysian cuisine in the area. Though innovative, spicy options abound, you can also order American classics like filet mignon. The mouthwatering dishes focus on fresh seafood, beef, chicken, or vegetarian dishes, and the wine selection provides the perfect complement, with a list of more than 1,000 to choose from. (203-562-2511)

6 Tre Scalini Ristorante
One of the more elegant options on Wooster Street, New Haven's answer to Little Italy, Tre Scalini specializes in innovative Italian cooking and the warmest service possible. Regulars flock here for luscious specialties like egg-battered tilapia, veal Milanese homemade crab-stuffed ravioli. Though a touch snug, the homey dining room, with its floral print wallpaper, exposed brick walls and intimate cafe-style tables, puts folks in the right mood to enjoy fine wine and cuisine. (203-777-3373)

5 Union League Cafe
Specializing in innovative French and contemporary American cuisine, Union League has an elegant dining room with high-ceilings, a large fireplace, and arched windows that stretch to the ceiling. The wine list is superb, and the waitstaff is well trained, offering helpful commentary about the dishes and their preparations. Bistro-style cuisine, amazing desserts, and the refined atmosphere make this a great spot for a business dinner, a romantic date, or a special occasion. (203-562-4299)

4 Zinc
Zinc is elegant, modern, and sleek inside, with warm lighting, white tablecloths, and a unique zinc-topped bar and communal table overlooking Chapel Street. A lovely banquet room in the back features soundproof doors, and the full-service bar is popular for drinks. This is an excellent choice for a business dinner. The menu is cutting-edge, with dishes like five-spice tuna tartare, charred Vietnamese black pepper chicken, and venison gumbo with Texmati rice. Unique and sophisticated from start to finish. (203-624-0507)

3 Frank Pepe's Pizzeria
Head to Frank's for some of the best pizza in the area. As you walk in, you see a huge wooden bar where a large variety of drinks are served. In the back, the large seating area features booths and tables to accommodate an intimate table for two or a large crowd. The dining room is clean, bright, and simple, with a friendly staff that is proud of the pizza they serve — and with good reason! You can get great "tomato pies," as they call them, with any combination of toppings you can think of, from the original with mozzarella to salami, bacon, mushrooms, or even clams. (203-865-5762)

2 Sally's Apizza
Frank Pepe's and Sally's have been "duking" it out for decades in an effort to figure out who has the best pizza. Lots of locals argue for Sally's, the original brick-oven pizza place in New Haven. This local institution features crisp pies with tangy basil and oregano-accented sauce and a long list of topping options. It's always crowded, but worth the wait and a great place to strike up a conversation with a local. Bill Clinton and Frank Sinatra are said to have been frequent, enthusiastic patrons of Sally's. (203-624-5271)

1 Carmen Anthony Steakhouse
Carmen Anthony is a veritable temple for discerning meat-lovers. Located in One Audubon, the stately space hearkens to the days of the classic supper club — it's masculine and refined yet comfortable. From the 24-oz. porterhouse to the filet mignon, each steak and chop is prepared using a signature Montreal seasoning, and side dishes like steamed broccoli with a garlic herb butter, skillet hash browns and asparagus with hollandaise serve as perfect, sharable complements. If it's not quite time for dinner, relax in the bar area, where the large, floor-to-ceiling windows offer terrific views of the goings on street-side. (203-773-1444)

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Maps and Directions

Bentara 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: Asian, Malaysian
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Disabled Accessible, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
COST: $$
Tre Scalini Ristorante 10Best List Arrow
Dining Options: Catering, Disabled Accessible, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking
Cuisine: European, Italian
Neighborhood: Wooster Square
COST: $$
Union League Cafe 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, European, French, New American
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Disabled Accessible, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms, Sommelier, Wine Cellar
COST: $$
Zinc 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Asian, Fusion, New American
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Disabled Accessible, Group Friendly, Live Music, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Neighborhood: DOWNTOWN
COST: $$
Frank Pepe's Pizzeria 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, European, Italian, Pizza
Dining Options: Disabled Accessible, Family Friendly, Non-Smoking
Neighborhood: Wooster Square
Sally's Apizza 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, European, Italian, Pizza
Dining Options: Disabled Accessible, Family Friendly, Group Friendly, Take Out
Neighborhood: Wooster Square
Carmen Anthony Steakhouse 10Best List Arrow
Cuisine: American, Steakhouse
Dining Options: Bar / Lounge, Bar Dining, Disabled Accessible, Group Friendly, Non-Smoking, Parties / Private Rooms
Neighborhood: STATE STREET
COST: $$$
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