Though the bustle of M Street is hardly romantic, FinoItaliano offers couples a comfy, home-cooked Italian meal that adds a little extra intimacy to the perfect date night.

The cozy restaurant features wood paneling and soft lighting to add a more homelike feel to the dining venue. Diners feel as though they have been welcomed into a true Italian home when they step through the doorway, which is left open on warm nights to give off an inviting glow. Though the dining room is rather snug, with a full bar and several strategically placed tables, diners enjoy a quiet setting that makes for a surprisingly private meal.

We were seated promptly in an old-fashioned booth at the back by a friendly and attentive waiter, who immediately offered us garlic bread and a variety of beverages to start. The garlic bread was delicious, albeit a little dry. It was presented with a perfect balance of roasted garlic and pesto, delivered warm to our table. However, we were able to savor it for only moments before our mainentreés were delivered, surprisingly quickly.

Fino’s forte is clearly its freshly made ravioli, prepared with four cheeses and pumpkin year round. There are also seasonal variations on the ravioli, such as savory Portobello mushrooms and lobster topped off with scallops. At first glance, the portion size of just four squares of ravioli seemed stingy, but the intensity of the ravioli’s flavor made up for its size. The rich flavors, creamy sauce and parsley garnish left us quite satisfied.

The warm atmosphere gave us the liberty to take our time and truly enjoy our entrees, and our drink glasses never ran out. We were more than happy to enjoy chamomile tea and a slice of raspberry cheesecake after we finished with our main course. Though the cake wasn’t superb, the setting and portion size were enjoyable enough to merit an extra bite.

Though Fino is perhaps too pricy to be an everyday dining spot for Jane and Joe Hoya, the atmosphere and delicious traditional Italian entrees provide the ideal dining experience for couples or friends to take a night off from their busy lives at Georgetown.

AMANDA SODERLAND / FOR THE HOYA
AMANDA SODERLAND / FOR THE HOYA

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