Chef Giovanni Novella focuses on local ingredients and authentic Italian preparation methods with a modern twist. Translating to “100″ in Italian, the significance behind Cento’s name (pronounced Chento), lies in our location.
Italian, Wine Bar, Pizzeria
Hours of Operation:
BRUNCH: Saturday & Sunday, 10 am - 2 pm
Sunday, 5 pm - 9 pm
Monday-Saturday, 5 pm - 10 pm
[Bar opens daily at 4 pm]
Thursday-Saturday, 10 pm - 12 am
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
For catering inquiries, please contact Jordan Bright at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cento’s central location on the corner of Mifflin & Fairchild Streets ensures easy access to convenient downtown parking. Two public parking structures adjacent to Overture Center offer more than 1,400 parking spaces. Additional parking ramps can be found on State Street and the Capitol Square, and on-street metered parking is also available for short-term parking in the downtown area. www.cityofmadison.com/transportation/parking.cfm
Private Party Facilities:
At Cento, we pride ourselves on hosting spectacular private events. Whether you would like to entertain a select small group, or host a large reception throughout the entire restaurant, Cento offers a number of options suitable for any occasion. We tailor each event to suit your needs, and a dedicated staff will ensure that every detail of your event is attended to.
Experience Cento from within the intimate atmosphere of our second dining room, which can accommodate up to 35 guests. Our second dining room is equipped with a private bar and is perfect for any occasion, whether it"s a business function or a celebration with family and friends, and is situated a few steps up from our main dining room. For larger groups, exclusive use of the restaurant can be arranged for both luncheon and dinner events, with the front lounge and bar as the perfect setting for a reception in advance of a seated event.
Private Party Contact:
Jordan Bright: 6082849378x
Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
Cento Ratings and Reviews
First time at Cento and my husband and I ...
First time at Cento and my husband and I both enjoyed it very much. The server was engaging, knowledgable and friendly but gave us our space. We had the fried artichokes and tuna for appetizers. We would highly recommend the artichokes but the tuna was too salty. We enjoyed both the Bolognese and the pork pasta dish very much. If you are looking for a bit of privacy and a a lower noise volume, ask for a booth, which is what we did. Only complaint is that our martinis were only 2/3 full. Overall, nice experience.
We have dined at Cento multiple times an ...
We have dined at Cento multiple times and have never been disappointed. This was the first time that I ordered a pizza and it was beyond yummy! We also enjoyed appetizers . . . dates and the cheese board . . . and both were a perfect start to the meal. We shared a bottle of wine . . . I can't recall the name other than it was a red blend and very tasty. My husband had a pasta dish and cleaned his plate. We ate outside (very urban . . . my only comment is that Thursday is trash night in downtown Madison and the odor was, let me say, obvious). It's too bad that Madison isn't more friendly to outdoor dining . . . it's not Cento's fault but the City could be more friendly and accommodating as to its sidewalk "rules." Otherwise, we enjoyed Cento, as always!
Our group of 5 ate prior to a concert at ...
Our group of 5 ate prior to a concert at the Overture Center. We were able to get a few drinks off the happy Hour special menu which ended at 6, just before we were seated. W had a booth in the center and our server was unbelievably awesome! She knew her stuff, and the manager made a point to stop at each table and have a genuine conversation. Our server had a great sense of humor, and was quick to return to our table to check on our meals after we were served.
We had 5:45 reservations an it was a relaxing dinner while still getting out on time to get to the show. The noise level was a little high but it was just the acoustics in the building. NO loud music or crazy people shouting- just a lot of excitement of friends gathering- very nice.
Every time we come to Madison from Washi ...
Every time we come to Madison from Washington, DC to visit our UWM student, we come to Cento. The food is top notch fresh and well-prepared - really first rate. I especially love the pasta and vegetable dishes. We also always get the butcher board, the charcuterie and cheese selections and fresh, warm bread are delicious and hit the spot after a day of travel. My favorite "nice" Madison restaurant by far.
WE HAVE ALWAYS ENJOYED CENTO. THIS WAS ...
WE HAVE ALWAYS ENJOYED CENTO. THIS WAS OUR FIRST TIME EATING OUTSIDE. OUR WAITRESS MUST HAVE BEEN NEW EVEN THOUGH SHE WAS NOT YOUNG. NOT ATTENTIVE, NOT REALLY PROFESSIONAL EVEN. SLOPPY WINE POURS AND POURED IN AN UNUSUAL ORDER, OLDEST WOMAN LAST, HUSBAND WHO TASTED THE WINE WAS FIRST. OH WELL.. THE FOOD WAS GREAT, OUTDOORS WAS FUN, ONLY ONE WINE SLOP ON MY PANTS DUE TO THE POUR.
Beautiful restaurant. The food was okay ...
Beautiful restaurant. The food was okay for 2 diners and not good for the other two guests. The Risotto was awful and regretted not sending it back. No taste. It was a bad description of the dish on the menu and had no taste. Very, very disappointed. Our server was not very attentive and really didn't give us any extra information to help our food selections. Don't think we will be back and sadly when asked about our visit we have mentioned the food wasn't good.
Sleek, modern decor; friendly, efficient ...
Sleek, modern decor; friendly, efficient service from hosts to managers; excellent food and a laid back but sophisticated atmosphere made this a truly wonderful place for a dinner out with girlfriends! Would recommend this to anyone!
I was told there was a new Italian chef. ...
I was told there was a new Italian chef. While the pasta with seafood was acceptable, it was not exceptional as I expected it to be. The salad was a real disappointment, as the tomatoes had been refrigerated… A real sin in the culinary world. Also, the lettuce and greens were not very fresh and the dressing was unremarkable. The desserts were slightly above average.
We visited Cento during a brief stay in ...
We visited Cento during a brief stay in Madison on business. While the decor and finishes of the restaurant were high-end, our meal was not. Beautiful space but it was incredibly loud. I dined with one other person and even at our intimate two-person table, it was difficult for us to carry on a conversation. Larger parties that would be seated with a greater span between guests would not be able to hear each other at all. The service was polite but slow with long periods of time where we wouldn't see our server. We ordered four separate menu items that we asked be brought out individually, however we went a long period with no new dishes, followed by two dishes being brought out together. The wine was tasty but overpriced. The beet dish were fine but nothing special. The fried squid was well cooked and tender, but the paired aioli was too heavy in comparison. The bread was disappointingly not included with meal, but was tasty at three additional dollars. The peak of disappointment occurred with our risotto dish, which was overcooked and flavorless. The notes of walnut and butternut squash mentioned on the menu were relatively non-existent and the rice just turned to mush in your mouth. To boot, it was under seasoned, which only added to the blandness. Despite leaving the majority of the risotto untouched, save for a few bites, our server did not explore any inquiry about its quality. While we had hoped to sample from the dessert offerings at the start of the meal, the quality of food, lack of attentive service and noisy ambiance lead us rather to cut our meal short without any sweet finishes. Overall a very disappointing evening when we had expectations it would be otherwise based on a high rating on OpenTable. I would not return nor would I recommend this restaurant to others who enjoy a tasty and well-executed fine dining experience.
I can only afford Cento on special occas ...
I can only afford Cento on special occasions, but it is well worth the wait. I fast most of the day so I have room for their yummy warm olives and homemade sourdough bread, AND one of the great salads (mmmmm roasted brussels sprouts), AND some pasta (Gnocchi just like Nonna used to make!), AND a side (I love the carmelized Fennel), and wrap it up with Affogato. Perfect! Just like dinners I've had in Tuscany.
Great evening out. Even though heavily b ...
Great evening out. Even though heavily booked the hostess volunteered to move our party to another table if we were not pleased. As it turned out our seating was perfect. I liked the fact that our satisfaction was important......a great start. Our server Lauren was very professional and friendly. As we had dined at Cento previously we knew what to expect food wise and were not disappointed with our great meal. The manager Melanie visited our table to check on us. Again a nice touch to check on our satisfaction. Two of the things we like about Cento are the beautiful ambiance and the affordable wine list. Cento is definitely one of our Madison faves.
3rd visit to Cento and amazing food. Wa ...
3rd visit to Cento and amazing food. Warm olives are a fav of ours to start with. Artichokes for starters was also a great start too. I sampled almost everyone's dish 😊 and not one dish would I not order from pasta to fish entree. The dessert options were shared and again .....yummy! Blueberry bread pudding to gelato with espresso. A completely enjoyable gastro-phenomenal dinner, plus sharing it all with family and friends puts the cherry on top !!
Cento manages to maintain an upscale vib ...
Cento manages to maintain an upscale vibe without being intimidating. Food is consistently excellent – the tagliatelle is mind-blowingly good – and the service is outstanding. If you need to move through a meal quickly, they’re very accommodating, but otherwise there’s no rush to clear the table. Cocktails are unique and tasty, so even with a big group, there’s something for everyone.
Based upon reviews, we visited Cento dur ...
Based upon reviews, we visited Cento during a recent stay in Madison. We have mixed feelings on the overall experience.
We arrived a little early for our reservations, hoping to grab a cocktail at the bar prior to being seated. It was a Friday night and the place was packed. We were very glad we had reservations because we may not have been seated for hours otherwise. We made our way to the bar which was packed as well. It appears a lot of people opt to eat at the bar rather than a table so bar stool options are very limited.
The atmosphere was not what we expected. It was very loud and tight. It almost felt like we were sitting with other tables due to the closeness of our two –top to the 4-top next to us and the large party behind us. Conversation was difficult due to the volume.
We had a little incident where a server walking past me with dirty dishes dropped a spaghetti sauce drenched fork on my back. The manager, Jordan, was helping bus a table nearby and we brought it to his attention. Jordan was appalled at the incident and could not have been more apologetic. Offering to pay for dry cleaning or replacement of my blouse. In the end he actually comped one of our entrees – not necessary but a very nice gesture. He did everything he could to rectify the situation.
Anyway – the food. This is where Centro shined. It was a delicious meal. We started with the Butcher Board – a nice arrangement of meats and cheeses. For entrees we had the Casarecce (lamb dish) and the Orecchiette (sausage). Both were excellent. We also had a nice bottle of wine. Nice selection and very reasonably priced. The sommelier was friendly and knowledgeable and helped us choose a wine that paired nicely with our meal.
So, while we really loved the food, and though the service was good, this just missed the 5 start rating due to the atmosphere and noise volume. That being said, I know we would visit again if in the area.
I went to Cento with my wife to celebrat ...
I went to Cento with my wife to celebrate our 6th anniversary. The food was really great, and it was a nice atmosphere (not very romantic, but a nice ambiance none the less). Our server was attentive. It was very cool to see the appetizer prep station out in front of the kitchen. Our meal was very well priced, with a shared appetizer, two pasta entrees, and a shared dessert coming in at around $40.
It would be a great place to have a large get-together (of people that are all at least 10 years old - no kids menu here).
Loved this place... Can't wait to go bac ...
Loved this place... Can't wait to go back! I am still dreaming about the artichoke appetizer, gnocchi and chocolate cherry dessert! I went with several friends and we ordered a bunch of things and shared them. There was one pizza that wasn't our favorite but everything else was outstanding!!
The atmosphere was gorgeous but not too fancy. Can't wait to go back and sit in one of the big velvet booth The atmosphere was gorgeous but not too fancy. Can't wait to go back and sit in one of the big velvet booths!
We thoroughly enjoyed our dining experie ...
We thoroughly enjoyed our dining experience at Cento. The waitress was very friendly and helpful, the food was fabulous and it's right across the street from the theater! We will definitely recommend this place to others.
My boyfriend and I came to Cento on an a ...
My boyfriend and I came to Cento on an anniversary! I had been here for a friend's birthday about a year prior and I suggested that we go. I was a little nervous that he wasn't going to like it because he can be a bit picky but the minute we got in he said that he "loved the ambiance." Our food was so delicious and I was just as impressed as I had been the first time I went!
I dined at Cento recenlty with a friend. ...
I dined at Cento recenlty with a friend. We shared the Brussel Sprout Salad to start and it was delicious. My friend ordered the risotto but found it be much cheesier than expected and too much so for her taste. I had the lamb pasta which was very tasty. Our waitress was on top of us too much at the beginning of the meal but then was MIA after that -- fortunately the manager stopped by and was able to get us the bread that we'd requested about 15 minutes before -- I could see the bread and had been tempted to just go get some myself! Granted it was a Friday night but still ... plus, beware, the acoustics are not great and it was VERY loud at our table (perhaps the booths are quieter?).
We always enjoy dining at Cento. Everyt ...
We always enjoy dining at Cento. Everything came out quickly and at proper temp. Only criticism I have is that everything was a little under seasoned for our liking. Service was cordial and professional. Menu is very diverse. We keep saying we need to come back more often....and we will.
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