About Il Palio
Il Palio is an intimate restaurant in the Siena Hotel. We strive to emulate the best of the great Italian tradition of hospitality and quality at the table and in the glass. Our vision is simple – use the best local and Italian ingredients as purely as possible and serve them with comfort and pride. We cook as an Italian might in North Carolina.
Hours of Operation:
Breakfast: Monday - Friday: 6:30am - 10:00am
Breakfast: Saturday - Sunday: 7:00am - 11:00am
Dinner: - Tuesday - Thursday 5:30pm - 9:00pm;
Friday & Saturday 5:30pm - 10:00pm
Closed: Sunday & Monday
Franklin St. and Estes Dr.
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Private dining and meeting space available from 2 - 200. Please contact the Catering & Sales team at 919.929.4000 or via email: email@example.com
Ample, complimentary self parking and valet parking available.
Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Delivery, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
Special Events & Promotions:
Private dining available to up to 100 guests. Please contact the Catering & Sales team at 919.929.4000 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Ballroom at The Siena Hotel is beautifully appointed with natural light and can set up to 100 and receptions up to 150. It can also be split into two smaller rooms. The Terrace Room off of Il Palio is also available for events of up to 36 people.
Il Palio Ratings and Reviews
My husband and I celebrated our 1st wedd ...
My husband and I celebrated our 1st wedding anniversary with a night at The Sienna Hotel (highly recommend) and dinner at Il Palio this past weekend. We both had always wanted to go to Il Palio, so our expectations were pretty high. The restaurant did not disappoint! They had Happy Anniversary printed on our menus which I thought was such a special touch. We started with a drink at the bar outside the restaurant in the hotel with Luke, the friendly and knowledgeable bartender. He shared some favorites from the menu witch us. At dinner, we began with 4 of the crostini appetizers to share - a house made ricotta with Wildflower Honey, Fonduta, Chicken Liver Mousse, and Beefsteak Drippings. The fonduta was probably our least favorite, and we couldn't decide which one we loved the most out of the other 3. I highly recommend trying some. For dinner, I got the Bucatini dish. It had fresh tomatoes and guanciale, very tasty. My husband couldn't stop raving about his meal, which is rare for him. He had the pork and veal ravioli with pistachios and fried sage. It was delicious! I got a half portion (what a great option) and my husband was going to as well, but Ally, our waitress , let him know the half had 3 and the whole had 6 ravioli so he went with the full portion. He also ordered a side of the polenta, full of corn and cheese, yum! We finished off the night with espresso and olive oil cake. This was probably my least favorite dish of the evening, but still good compared to the rest of the meal being perfect! All of the service we received was excellent as well. We'll be going back as soon as we can find an excuse for another special occasion!
Service was so so, somewhat confused, we ...
Service was so so, somewhat confused, we were 4 in number, had a pre dinner drink, 2 bottles of wine and we had to ask for help in filling wine glasses.
Food was OK, but nothing "special"
For such a "pricey" meal, it was somewhat disappointing.
Il Palio has been on our 'try' list sinc ...
Il Palio has been on our 'try' list since their renovations, liked the new 'open kitchen'and less formal setting. Service was outstanding. Would like to see the whole fish presented on a bigger platter, would be easier to filet ... better yet, have the server prepare it at the table.
Great service. Have gluten free options ...
Great service. Have gluten free options. Ambience was nice - not too loud, easy to talk to our table. There is a nice area on the patio for dining, it was too hot when we were there, but probably very nice in cooler weather.
The service and the food here is great. ...
The service and the food here is great. There are fun cocktails (the sweetie likes these) and some seroius wines. Get the little dessert doughnuts. Those are a fine finish. (Basically... churros) but are know as bombolinas. Buono Appetito. This place is reliably great.
Lovely, quiet restaurant. Service was o ...
Lovely, quiet restaurant. Service was outstanding. Our waitress (wish I could recall her name) was very knowledgeable about the menu and and wine and made recommendations. At her suggestion I ordered the grilled swordfish (fresh off the boat from Beaufort NC and very delicious) but I mentioned that the sea bass preparation with capers & olives sounded appetizing. So she brought a cup of capers and olives side with my swordfish so I could have that too. The kitchen sent my chicken liver crostini appetizer to the wrong table, so they not only delivered my chicken liver they also added a white bean crostini (at no charge) so my dining companion had an appetizer too, since the appetizer was delayed. I really wanted to have the gelato dessert but we were too full after the pasta primi and the main course, but our waitress brought 6 spoons with a taste of each of the 3 gelato flavors for the 2 of us to try. She was awesome -- paid attention to what we said and, very unexpectedly, treated us to some nice extras. It's a lovely fine dining restaurant. Prices are what you'd expect for fine dining, but very worth the cost.
Our Italian waiter was charming and sugg ...
Our Italian waiter was charming and suggested two excellent dishes for my friend and I. We were both delighted with our dinners and even shared a hot chocolate souffle which we had ordered right after arriving. A tasty treat to finish a fine meal.
An excellent dining experience. Since ou ...
An excellent dining experience. Since our party of 7 wanted to try everything, we ordered a lot of things to share, beginning with four different crostini -- white bean, beef dripping, chicken liver and mashed green pea. All of them were tasty, but not particularly memorable. Next we ordered two antipasti -- wood grilled octopus and braised lamb meatballs. Both were excellent. Then we shared four of the pastas -- pappardelle with ragu, pork and veal ravioli, spaghetti cacio e pepe, and bucatini all'Amatriciano. The pastas are really the strong suit of Il Palio. All of the ones we tried were outstanding. For dessert, we had two dark chocolate souflees, as well as a dark chocolate torta and a slice of olive oil cake. The souflee was a bit of a disappointment. The texture was very nice -- light and fluffy -- but the chocolate was unsweetened and didn't really hit the spot for dessert. The olive oil cake was terrific. Top marks to the wait staff who were knowledgeable, attentive, and paced the service perfectly. A special shout out to the wine steward. Even though I told him I was not a fan of Nebbiolo wines, he made a strong recommendation for a Barolo which he said was drinking very well. When he poured me a sample, I told him that I just didn't care for it. He could not have been more gracious in agreeing to take it back. He then steered us toward a delicious super Tuscan that we all enjoyed very much. Not surprisingly, the wine list tilts heavily toward Italian wines. It is not extensive, but has a good sampling of the major wine regions of Italy and is not over priced. One more shout out to the wine steward. While eating, he heard me mention that I preferred my pasta Amatriciano with a bit more spice, and before I had a chance to take another bite, promptly brought over some ground hot pepper. That's the kind of service that makes a restaurant special and makes me want to come back.
A 5 star celebration
We were celebrating my daughter's graduation from Graduate School! It was also Mothers Day and the four course pre fixe menu was incredible! Food was delicious and served beautifully. Wait staff was very attentive and helpful. A great restaurant for that special occasion!
We went for Mother's Day and had a thoro ...
We went for Mother's Day and had a thoroughly enjoyable dinner. The only offering, which we knew beforehand, was a three-course prix fixe menu and, while the food was very good, even excellent, I felt the pricing was high for some of the items on the menu. Had what was contained on the menu been known beforehand, I could have gone in better prepared on what to expect. But overall, the food was excellent, of very high quality, the service top notch, and a good time had by all.
Italian in Chapel Hill
Il Palio's is outstanding Italian cuisine. They use the local meats and produce, along with the freshest seafood from the coast to deliver really amazing Italian dishes. They have a very nice selection of Italian wines, including lesser know wines from Sicily. While service is good, it is the food, and the consistent food experience , that make this place really something special.
It has been a while since I had been to ...
It has been a while since I had been to Il Palio, probably since Adam Rose had left as the executive chef. However, since his departure the entire menu and feel has shifted back to that of a more traditional Italian Trattatoria than the previous fine dining experience that chef Rose offered. That's not a bad thing as it presents a more traditional appeal to the Italian cuisine.
We started our meal off with a mix and match off the crostini list and also shared the meatball appetizer. This was something we did frequently in our recent travels to Italy. It was on point with the best we had in the old world. We then each had a pasta dish that was perfectly al dente with rich, flavorful sauce (can be served as small or dinner portion depending on appetite).
The wine list offered various domestic and imported Italian wines to fit each dish and every budget. We finished off the dinner with port, coffee, and a dessert - which was also typical of our travels. The offerings were of the modern unique and traditional Italian desserts.
The food is not the only highlight of the experience, either. The servers and atmosphere are both great, giving that feeling of being at the center of their world and receiving very attentive service during the meal. It is a bit dark (especially if you leave and it is still light out) but that adds to the romantic setting of the restaurant.
Il Palio is a place that needs to be experienced, as it is a true tour de force on your senses. However, that sort of experience comes at a price. You can get in and out of there for a very reasonable price point - but if you go all out then you need to be prepared to pay appropriately for the experience. I never felt that it was unfair or overpriced - but keep in mind that for most people this will be a special occasion or date spot. Either way - however you get there you need to get there and experience the new vision of Il Palio; it is the finest Italian in the triangle.
Great new menu!
Since Chef Gennaro Villella left Il Palio, we haven't been tempted by Il Palio. But now Teddy Diggs fantastic menu will draw us back frequently. We loved the olive oil drenched focaccia and all of the crostini that we sampled (salt cod, chicken liver mousse, chick peas/balsamico, white beans/soffrito). Each of the pastas we chose was special (Acorn 'Fazzoletti', Cacio e Pepe, Maccheroni alla Chitarra with wild ramps), but it was the Fazzoletti that garnered raves. Ánd the Bombolini for dessert were the perfect finish. The only thing I'd change is the cup in which my Americano was served--cup that is perhaps appropriate for caffè latte. The thing was big enough for lap swimming! Be warned, the menu respects the seasons, so things like stinging bettle soup and pasta with ramps will not be available once spring has passed.
We particularly enjoyed the chicken live ...
We particularly enjoyed the chicken liver mousse crostini, the meatballs, the ravioli, and the cauliflower side dish. The servers were all very gracious and it was a nice atmosphere. My only complaint is that all of our dishes were noticeably too salty; this isn't usually something that I see at nicer restaurants (I.e., I am not someone who normally complains about salt). I don't know if it was an off night or if the chef just has a different set of tastebuds than the two of us do!
Absolutely the best and most authentic Italian food I've had in the greater Chapel Hill area. The crostini from the wood fired oven were delicious: baccala, anchovy butter, fagiolini, etc. Pasta was fresh; dishes were light and very flavorful. Main courses delightful. Great wine list. Chef imports the olive oil from a small producer in Italy - excellent! Great service, cozy atmosphere. took friends there three times last month, and will do again next month. Want to try every dish on the menu!
Italian at its best
The wait staff and kitchen accommodated our request for an antipasti misto start to the meal and helped our group of 4 select diverse primi and secondi that left room for dessert. Pasta was especially was outstanding. A great meal with excellent service.
Good food, bad math
The food was very good, and the service was fine but almost too attentive.
However, we asked our waitress to run two tabs and, although the total for each couple was approximately correct, the lists of what we had been served were wrong, leading to confusion and concern.
Not a great value. The restaurant no lo ...
Not a great value. The restaurant no longer has the Mediterranean ambiance it had years ago. Just a modern, rather cold, over-priced place to eat. The food was good, but not worth the price. Squid's in Chapel Hill would have been much better.
Special night out
Took my husband, son, and a friend to celibrate birthdays for all three. A bit nervous as I had never been there, picked it totally from the website, AND we are from out of town. Arrived a little early so we were seated at the bar. We were immediately given total attention. After going to our table, our fabulous server introduced himself. From the specials to pairings, he helped us with decisions for the entire table attention to detail was great. Did not hover but he certainly checked the table each time he passed withou disturbing us. Portions are huge, sides are for sharing, and we had no complaints. We requested a roomy table and were not disappointed. This is certainly a great place to go for a nice dinner but excels for special occasions. Remember good food is not cheep and good service is not either. Well worth the price. Definitely would go back !
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