Best of Boston

1998 BEST Italian Restaurant, Contemporary

Marcuccio’s

Boldly layered flavors, as in charred calamari with black olive puree and red pepper jus, and imaginative twists on staples, as in fusilli in a parmesan broth with walnuts and sundried tomatoes, make this copper-kitchened restaurant one of the brightest sports in the North End. Charles Draghi and his staff love to cook so much that, for diners who repeatedly order the six-course chef’s choice menu (with accompanying wines), they’ll even ad lib an occasional dish.

125 Salem St. Boston 617-723-1807