Best of Boston

1998 Best Italian Restaurant, Traditional

Mamma Maria

Don’t be misled by the name: this ain’t no spaghetti house. Bringing high-end Northern cuisine to the North End, chef Bill Wallo is a maestro of the classics. Papardelle is served in a lovely traditional Tuscan rabbit sauce, and Bistella della Fiorentina with potato gratin is a hearty delight. And for a taste of la dolce vita, try the Semifreddo. This place is so refined and elegant, yet so friendly, you’ll feel like a close personal friend of the Medicis.

3 North Square, Boston, 617-523-0077,