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Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options
Lunch, Dinner
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1.9 km from Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
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Reviews (222)
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All reviews meatballs sunday gravy the short rib pasta wine list long wait
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Reviewed yesterday

Cute location, perhaps in an old bank. Because of this the accoustic were poor. The restaurant was very busy but they took us right in. Service throughout the meal was pleasant but staff seemed rushed. We ordered Ravioli in Tomato Cream Sauce, Wild Mushroom and...Kale Ravioli, and a daily special Salmon dish. Each of us was very happy with our meal. Prices seemed a little high? Both raviolis came with nothing else. If in the area again I'd return but knowing the bill would be high.More

Date of visit: May 2022
Reviewed 5 April 2022

food was ok, service wasn't great the manager was extremely rude manager was extremely rude wont go again

Date of visit: March 2022
Reviewed 23 March 2022

What’s not to love about Lillian’s? Friendly attentive knowledgeable hostess and servers, salad ingredients that could not be more fresh, excellent entrees and wine list! Lillian’s has my vote for best restaurant in the Santa Cruz area.

Date of visit: March 2022
Reviewed 21 March 2022 via mobile

Food was fine. Service at best okay - multiple requests went unfulfilled including missing dishes. Manager (owners son) was extremely rude.

Date of visit: March 2022
Reviewed 8 July 2021 via mobile

I rally everything about this place was average. Nothing stood out. The food wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t memorable. For those that like a red sauce this one is more “tomatoes”. The gnocchi didn’t have much flavor at all.

Date of visit: July 2021
Reviewed 25 June 2021 via mobile

A taste of Sunday dinner. Their Sunday gravy(not sauce) I knew I was on to something. So good. Kids had meatballs, other adults had fettuccini other dishes I can’t remember EVERONE liked their dinner, that’s unusual. Ordered online and picked it up.

Date of visit: June 2021
Reviewed 12 June 2021

Food is okay for Santa Cruz which in not the culinary capital of Central California but it is okay. Pasta over or underdone. Food not particularly flavorful. Overpriced and rude and disrespectful hosting. Don't recommend.

Date of visit: June 2021
Reviewed 12 April 2021

We went here based on Yelp and TA reviews. We ordered the truffle stuffed gnocchi with gorgonzola sauce, short rib pasta, and the chicken parmesan. All of the portions were huge and definitely would have split a few dishes instead of ordering a separate dish...for each of us. A bunch went to waste because we were staying in a hotel. The winner was definitely the chicken parmesan. The gnocchi was good but really rich. The short rib pasta was disappointing. Too much raw garlic. Wouldn't order that again. There was a line and without reservations it was going to be 1:45 hour wait. So we opted to order for pickup, which was about 40 min wait. It was a bit surprising to find a large industrial size restaurant. They have a large, impersonal looking indoor dining room and a cute outdoor area in the back parking lot.More

Date of visit: April 2021
Reviewed 10 April 2021

We called in a take out order and loved it so much, we came back again the next night. We enjoyed the gnocchi, eggplant parm, pesto pasta and lasagna. All were wonderful. Next time we are in the area, we will make sure to get...reservations early so we can enjoy dining there.More

Date of visit: April 2021
Reviewed 13 September 2020

We’ve been going to Lilians’s since they were in their tiny restaurant up Soquel Ave. I sometimes miss the little cozy atmosphere. Now it’s been more than discovered and it’s always busy even though the dining room is 5 times the original size. I’ve never...had a bad dish, we stick to the pasta. The Sunday Gravy with meat balls on homemade fettuccine is the perfect comfort food. The Gorgonzola gnocchi with or with out a filet minion is beyond decadent. Right now they have a nice set up in their parking lot due to Covid. They’ve set it up nicely so it feels like a patio vs. part of the parking lot.More

Date of visit: September 2020
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Questions & Answers
Ask a question
28 July 2017|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from ckf722 | Reviewed this property |
Yes, you can substitute gluten free pasta or order your dish over polenta instead of their normal pasta.
Laura B
5 May 2017|
Response from JeriLG | Reviewed this property |
No, it is not. There would be a corking fee. But, they do have a great selection of wines.
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Frequently Asked Questions about Lillian's Italian Kitchen

Yes, Lillian's Italian Kitchen offers takeaway services.

Lillian's Italian Kitchen is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travellers:
  • Food: 4.5
  • Service: 4.5
  • Value: 4