Eat Well in Fort Myers: Italian Classics with Modern Twists

There is something about Italian food that warms a person’s soul. It’s comforting, it’s full of flavor and the restaurants that serve it are usually full of life. Italian food is more than spaghetti, meatballs and pizza. Many of these 10Best take great pride in their gourmet selections, braising beef, roasting fish and adding modern twists to old world favorites. 

10Best dining establishments such as Angelina's has built quit a reputation locally, as well as nationally, for it's award winning cuisine and wine list that tops 4000 bottles. Angelina's occupies a big space but manages to maintain a warm, romantic feeling. 

The restaurant Cibo is a fraction of the size of Angelina's but locals still dress to impress here, many staking out space at the small bar, after work.

One thing you'll find at all of these 10Best are local owners and colorful chefs. Many of the chefs are also owners who pay close attention to every detail of their establishment, including the patrons. Mike Fattah from Farfalla remembers birthdays while Dario Zuljani from Ariani's who loves to sing and educate diners on the area of northern Italy where he and many staffers hail from.  

No matter which of these 10Best you choose, your senses and belly will be full and happy when you leave.

Citrola's Italian Restaurant on McGregor
Photo courtesy of Gina Birch


Citrola's has been serving top notched pizza and Italian cuisine at various locations in the Fort Myers area for three decades. The mother ship, with the original owners manning the kitchen, has relocated to a space a bit off of the beaten path...  Read More

Ristorante Ariani
Photo courtesy of GIna Birch


This Italian restaurant in Cape Coral has great style, great service, great food and the owner is great fun. Dario Zuljani is a force, both in the kitchen and in the front of the house. The chef loves to sing, have fun and has an eagle eye for...  Read More



Owned by two sisters, much of the food in this comfortable Italian restaurant is inspired from the family's 65-year old restaurant in Venezuela. You'll find Loredana in the kitchen cooking up her signature Bolognese and Claudia in the front of...  Read More

Page Field
Photo courtesy of Gina Birch


Years ago, getting a seat in this Italian restaurant was quite a feat. Not because of the small size but the temperamental owner. People endured the humiliation of standing and waiting for seats when the restaurant was clearly half full, because...  Read More

Ristorante Farfalla


Don't expect spaghetti and meatballs here, in fact don't even ask for them. This classy, white linen tablecloth restaurant introduced the Estero area to the skill of Michael Fattah, a chef whose attention to detail and pursuit of excellence has...  Read More

Bonita Springs
La Fontanella
Photo courtesy of Gina Birch


With linen tablecloths, an international wine list and professional service, the food in this Italian restaurant is all made to order and the kitchen accommodates all dietary types--all you have to do is ask. Even if a protein is breaded before...  Read More



Born in Florence, Italy, chef/owner Antonio Durante specializes in simply prepared foods from his homeland. Simple because the ingredients are few but they are of extraordinary quality and assembled in such a way that leaves you begging for...  Read More

South Fort Myers
Photo courtesy of Gina Birch


Don't let the simple name ("food" in Italian) and unassuming location of Cibo fool you. Serving up some of the most exquisite Italian food in Fort Myers, the restaurant's chic interior will make you quickly forget you're in a strip mall. Open...  Read More

Osteria Celli
Photo courtesy of Gina Birch


Don't expect chicken parm at this Italian restaurant; Chef Marco Corricelli doesn't serve the more common, or Americanized Italian dishes. His food is inspired from many different regions in Italy, his pasta handmade daily and cooked just right....  Read More

Angelina's Ristorante
Photo courtesy of Angelina's Ristorante


Angelina's screams elegance from the moment you pull up to the building. If you are dressed beach casual, you may find yourself excluded from eating in the dinning room but the bar (with live piano music) and patio both have the same great menu...  Read More


Meet Gina Birch

Gina carries the rare title of "Native Floridian". Living in Southwest Florida for 22 years, she is a well known, award winning radio and TV personality. 

Besides brandishing a microphone, Gina...  More About Gina