Review Summary

9.1 based on 102 reviews
  • Food

  • Value

  • Ambiance

  • Service

    First time eating here despite walking past the restaurant for many years. It is safe to say I will most definitely be returning! Lovely food, great service!

    Spoilt for choice, food was excellent, staff very friendly, had a lovely meal before going to the theatre, thankyou San Carlos.

    Fantastic pre theatre meal.

    Top marks! Amazing service! I will be back (again...) for more!

    Good food with friendly and helpful staff. Also very attractive surroundings.

    San Carlo is my first choice for excellent Italian dining in Leicester! Always a great choice of food - especially fresh fish - well cooked, and prompt and attentive service. A pleasure to be there again.

    Good food. Great service.

    Fantastic food and amazing service always.

    Good starter and mains but slow service.

    Very warm welcome chose our own table and received a glass of bubbly each as we were celebrating our wedding anniversary.
    Food was lovely, felt they lacked on the service tonight.
    Overall we had a lovely evening, the restaurant looks amazing, loved the ambiance. Felt as if we were on a holiday night out.

    The restaurant is welcoming, good & friendly staff, the food is excellent, would definitely recommend.

    A lovely meal, the food was first class as always. We love San Carlo and thoroughly recommend it.

    The overall atmosphere was nice and friendly. Staff were very professional.
    The time for the food to arrive was quite good and the food was delicious. We only had starter and mains, which were good portion sizes.
    I would definitely recommend San Carlos.

    Food was lovely but not enough staff so waiting 30mins to have order taken got starter and then the main course didn’t come until 45mins after we finished our starter we have been before and normally it’s fine but this was a joke really

    Fabulous meal in gorgeous setting. Staff were friendly and helpful and food was all delicious and beautifully presented. It was my daughter's birthday and although we didn't even request any special treatment our waiter was obviously paying attention and our plate of deserts was brought out by waiters singing happy birthday, which was a lovely personal touch and a nice surprise. Thank you for making our meal so special. We would definitely visit again.

    Great atmosphere

    Very nice

    Food was ok but small portions. Service charge should not be automatically added.

    As usual, the meal and service was second to none.

    As always brilliant.

    Absolutely brilliant.

    A tasty meal with prompt, courteous service.

    The food was great, would recommend the lobster ravioli. The only negative I found to this place was that the 10% tip is automatically put on the bill and when the service isn’t great I don’t really want to be forced to pay.

    A fantastic meal, served by attentive staff. Food was beautiful and of a great quality. The restaurant was very busy so was quite loud and chatty and the music was also quite loud (so it could b heard above the talking) and this spoilt the ambience a touch as we had to almost shout across the table to each other to be heard! But apart from that, a thoroughly enjoyable evening for my mum's birthday .well done.

    Great value with Christmas menu, good service and lovely venue.

    All good except too long to get served, so the meal was rushed.

    Had a great meal with some free entertainment! First I tried my finest Italian phrases with the prettiest waitress, only to find out she was Spanish! Very amusing! This was shortly followed by the same waitress pouring Peronis over my sister as she lost control of the drinks tray! Even more amusing! It was all taken in good humour. After chatting to the head waiter, a big Italian guy, we broke into harmonious singing with a rendition of "VOLARES" to which several waiters and the chef joined in. We went on to Sinatra, Tom Jones and Elvis! Brilliant. I was then introduced to Carlo's beautiful and charming daughter. Then a large family arrived on the table next to us. We thought this was the archetypal Italian family with children, nona, mum.

    Great meal & service.

    Cracking service from the moment we entered ! The food was first class from the Sardine starter to the 5 fish main meal . My wife was particularly impressed with the fish cakes in her starter and the choice of desert . Just one small thing was the choice of wines which for such a restaurant was a little restricted . All in all a first class lunch which we would recommend to anyone visiting the city centre.

    Great meal. Staff treated us like celebs (which we are not!). Thoroughly enjoyable experience.

    Perfect. From the table service to the food.

    Staff were friendly. The food was definitely worth the money.

    I think the staff forgot about us. Was 20 minutes before we got attention and after we had called a waiter.
    Mushroom starter was not very warm at all but the mains were very nice though!

    Very quiet at lunchtime, service good, food average and quite pricey .

    Incredible meal, service and atmosphere

    Disappointed with time took to be served drinks when we first got there (approx. 25 mins).
    Food very nice, but disappointed that extra items were added to the bill which we never received, also questionable amount of drinks.

    Very prompt service, but we did dine early and it wasn’t busy at the time. Food absolutely delicious, the Cannelloni was the best I’ve had and the Profiteroles were gorgeous.

    Good quality fresh ingredients but big disappointment was ordering Queen Scallops for my main course and getting TWO scallops.

    Good quality fresh ingredients but big disappointment was ordering Queen Scallops for my main course and getting TWO scallops.

    Beautifully presented meal freshly made and very tasty

    Good food and excellent service as usual.

    Fabulous meal! Would recommend.

    Service lacking. But nice evening.

    Service lacking. But nice evening.

    The Leicester restaurant has recently changed to the Chicchetti brand but still under the San Carlo banner. This was the first time that we had visited after the change.
    Cicchetti is a sort of Italian tapas, where each dish is smaller and you get several dishes that you can share. Someone came to explain the idea to us which was good as we were initially a bit confused.
    Each dish was brought out from the kitchen as it was ready, so it was a different dining experience. There were four of us, and we chose 11 dishes in all.
    I am happy to say that the food was up to San Carlo's usual good standard, and the meal was enjoyed by all. I particularly enjoyed the pizza frita (deep fried pizza), and for dessert the Dolci Cicchetti (a sharing dessert for two) was great.

    50% off on the new menu FANTASICTO

    Really enjoyed the whole evening! The food was wonderful as well as the service. Will definitely be returning! 50% off the new menu was a nice surprise when we received the bill, thankyou!

    Excellent food, lots of choice, beautifully presented. Service was great and waiters friendly and informative.

    Great value lunch deal - portions could have been a bit bigger but tasted great. Love the decor- makes you feel like you’re in a Mediterranean garden.

    Super Cooper the best!

    Always a great dining experience here - perfect pre and post theatre venue.

    Everything absolutely stunning from the first minute to the last.
    My family and I spent two and a half hours and a lot of money in there for a Christmas treat. Would I do it again? In a heartbeat!! Buonissimo

    Amazing place with great food, really good value for your money too.

    The food was late and some cold and on of the managers was rude and dismissive he also became agitated when ever we would call him to our large table and when we asked for our bill without the service charge.

    Fantastic service. Even better food. Love this place x

    A very busy night - but still good service and a great meal!

    Lovely meal and a fantastic atmosphere.

    The atmosphere was great, food was lovely, we had a lovely evening, definitely going again.

    Amazing food with great service at San Carlo!

    Great food and excellent service. Will visit again!

    As always San Carlos is excellent for a leisurely lunch with friends. The food and service can't be bettered.

    Would go back!

    Good food, good service, expensive but worth every penny for a special occasion!

    Yummy and a good price!

    Loved it

    A good meal. I started with minestrone soup which was hot and not overwhelmed with tomato but on the thin and watery side: needed a little more body. I followed with a special of 5 grilled fish : this was excellent, cooked to perfection. The accompanying sauté potatoes were fine, as was the house wine.
    The service was friendly and professional but I would have liked to have been told what the 5 fishes were and there was a wait for the bill.
    I would definitely dine there again.

    Good service & good food. Will definitely go back.

    We enjoyed our meal the only draw back was it was all a bit rushed.

    We came to Leicester to see our daughter in Grease. She recommended the San Carlo restaurant and it was wonderful. Food was great!

    Delicious food at San Carlo and pleasant service!

    Fantastic greeting and welcome at San Carlo which set the tone for the evening. Service was good, and quality of food was excellent. We booked as a precursor to a theatre show and will definitely use again!

    The booking was very simple and worked flawlessly. Was just a shame about the food. Scallops were unseasoned. The lobster was overcooked and the flavour was drained out by the taste of mustard in the sauce. My partners salmon was very dry. Fortunately the desert saved it and was nice. Would defo use Go dine again but the restaurant maybe not.

    The meal at San Carlo was really nice in a lovely atmosphere. The staff made the night feel special for my grand daughter and myself. I would certainly go again and book in this way. So easy!

    Food was good but the service was terrible. Wont go back.

    Great food and great service- thought lighting was slightly too dim for our taste but probably just us!

    Great place, easy booking with Go Dine. Lovely food and atmosphere :) would definitely go back and will definitely recommend to family and friends.

    Very nice birthday meal at San Carlo's. My 2 yr old grand-daughter was made to feel welcome too.

    We couldn't fault the quality of the food at San Carlo, it was absolutely brilliant and was matched with excellent service from an attentive staff. However the price of a meal for two is high with a wine list that starts at over £20.

    This is a restaurant to visit for a special occasion which this was. However, at those prices it couldn't be a regular visit!

    Made very welcome at San Carlo. So much to choose on the menu! We had scallops and prawns for starters both dishes well presented and delicious. For the main courses we tried the Lobster Thermidor and the fillet steak Rossini both equally tasty, the sides are extra. We tried the profiteroles and panna cotta for dessert which were also good. All in all we had a good evening, The service was very good. Value wise it is not cheap. (there are many items that are not too expensive but it was a special occasion) The bill for 3 courses plus extras and drinks was just over £100 including service charge.

    Lovely food and excellent service - would definitely book again - thank you for a wonderful night.

    We had a fantastic night at San Carlo in Leicester, the food was superb and the atmosphere was wonderful.

    All the food at the San Carlo I had was great except for the pizza I had for main which had so much garlic on that it overpowered the rest of the flavours. The starters and desserts were great, along with the drinks.
    The service was mostly good apart from some times when the staff seemed very rushed and didn't stop to ask if anything else was wanted. The bill for two came to £95 which was mostly on the drinks which in my opinion were a bit more expensive than they needed to be, but other than that it was a good meal.

    Great food, attentive polite service and a great experience at San Carlo - thank you.

    Had a really lovely meal. All the staff were very helpful and happy, even had a little Italian sing song. A little pricey for the meal and then have to pay extra for side orders ie veg or fries to complete your meals but all in all very nice.

    San Carlo has long been the best restaurant I have ever been to and the food is simply outstanding... Unfortunately when we visited this time something just wasn't quite right. Since our last visit in January 2013 the place has undergone a bit of a make-over and new more intimate booths have been added along the walls. The expansive 'specials' wine list has been scaled back and the rambling tree branches adorning the lighting rig on the ceiling are gone. I liked the booths, but the other changes just served to leave the restaurant a little bit cold, clinical and less friendly. No one took our coats as they had on every previous visit and although the maître di was friendly enough, he seemed rushed and less interested in us as patrons and more in us as a source of income. There's nothing I can say about the food we ate, other than the fact it was excellent, as was the wine ordered from the standard wine list. The mushrooms stuffed with pate and deep fired served as starters and fillet steak as our main courses, both were perfect in every way... But when it came to the dessert things changed. For some reason the management have reduced the dessert menu and one of the things to go was the crème brulee. This may seem a small thing, but this pudding was truly outstanding; really, really incredible and I'm a little embarrassed to say that it's absence took the gloss off the entire meal. I guess that the changes and increased emphasis on business like efficiency have helped San Carlo survive and prosper during an incredibly tough recession and for that they cannot be knocked, but despite the usual excellent standards in most of what they do, these minor changes left my partner and I feeling ever so slightly disappointed.

    Good food, good value and good service at San Carlo - only down side was a mix up between a vegetarian and chicken calzone - but the staff handled the problem professionally and well.

    Fabulous food in areally stylish restaurant with a great buzz and atmosphere. Would definitely recommend

    Cannot fault anything in this restaurant. If you want class and an absolutely fantastic meal please go here. Don't expect cheap prices but you definitely get what you pay for - class!

    This was the fifth time we had visited San Carlo and it was important to me as my guests and I were collectively celebrating three separate birthdays.....however, I need not have worried, we were not left disappointed. The food, atmosphere and staff were as excellent on this visit as they had been on our first and the consistency in quality was wonderful. The staff we prompt, courteous and knowledgeable and the food and wine were outstanding. This is easily the best restaurant that I have ever eaten in and I have no doubt that it is one of the finest in the county, if not further afield.

    Simply awesome from the food to the service and the creme brule is still the finest pudding of any kind I've ever had. We've booked again for a family meal in just three weeks and I have no doubt that our 5th visit will be ever bit as memorable as the first!

    This was our third visit to San Carlo and it was perhaps the best yet!

    We decided to go for just two courses instead of three as we had been left so uncomfortably full last time, but that did nothing to spoil the overall experience.

    I had the fillet steak in lemon and parsley, (cooked blue) and my partner had 1/2 a lobster thermadore. The steak was absolutely amazing and was cooked to perfection, so much so that I had to wrestle it away from my other half! Her lobster was also wonderful and as she looked at the empty plate, she dearly wished she'd ordered the whole thing! A bottle of Chablis complemented our meal in fantastic fashion, as did the side orders of spinach and sauteed potatoes. The spinach has a real kick thanks to the addition of fresh chilli and if you are going to order the potatoes, pay the extra and get the offering with bacon and rosemary - simply stunning. It was creme brulee all round for desert and it remains the best pudding of any kind I have ever tasted.

    As always, a fantastic meal, fantastic choice, fantastic service. Thank you.

    Second time at San Carlo and as with our first it was excellent. Previously I'd had the steak and this time I was determined to have the fish. Trouble is their menu is expansive and everything on it is stunning! I started with crabcakes and my partner had the pate. The cakes were nice enough, nothing special, but the sweet chilli sauce was wonderful and had a great kick without being overpowering. The pate was outstanding. For mains I opted for the halibut and my other half had the fillet steak topped with more pate. Both were amazing and easily the best we'd ever tasted. For dessert we had the strawberry cheescake and creme brulee. The cheesecake was the only dissapointed thing. It was a little dry and only the sauce saved it. It tasted very average at best. The brulee however was a work of art and up there with the best puddings I've ever had! The service was great and the staff so accommodating, especially seeing as we had been held up and were 30 minutes late.

    A truly excellent meal in every aspect. We booked late and were still welcomed by the booking clerk, the waiters and consierge were attentive, polite and humourous, the food was outstanding and the price extremely reasonable. This was a special occasion for us and San Carlo did not dissapoint. My only minor gripe was the inclusion of a 10% service charge, but the waiter was happy to remove it from the bill and I tipped 15% anyway! My partner stated that it was the best meal she had ever eaten and it won't be long before we book again. Thank you again, for a wonderful and memorable evening.

    Made to feel extremely welcome and our wine waiter was very helpful. Food was amazing, fresh and tasty and our steaks were cooked to perfection. Had to request our bill a few times and staff seemed distracted towards the end of our visit despite a half full restaurant. However, I would certainly recommend this restaurant.

    beautifull xmas dinner we all enjoyed our meal even my 3 year old grandaughter!we were made very welcome by the staff and a lovely xmas atmosphere we will definatley book again for any special occasion

    Went here with my girlfriend, it's an amazing place, the waiters are really nice and friendly and the food is cooked to perfection. It's a really nice atmosphere as well with candles on the tables and a few curved booths. I highly recommend going here and this is one restaurant I'll definitely be going back to.

    Bright and airy restaurant that has a real buzz about it. Watched our meals being prepared in the open kitchen and were not dissapointed with the recomendation.

12pm - 11pm
12pm - 11pm
12pm - 11pm
12pm - 11pm
12pm - 11pm
12pm - 11pm
12pm - 11pm
  • Ranked #13 of 205
  • Avg. main course: £13
  • 0.48 miles from Leicester
  • Italian

We say…

One of the finest Italian restaurants that Leicester has to offer, San Carlo serves authentic Italian cuisine in some of the most breath-taking surroundings. Situated on Granby Street close to the train station and nearby Leicester’s shopping and entertainment venues, it is the perfect spot to enjoy a meal any time of the day.

San Carlo boasts first-class architecture providing guests with modern, bright and airy surroundings.  You can watch the chefs, trained by famous Italian Chef Aldo Zilli, toss pizzas in the open kitchen which features a genuine wood burning oven for a real authentic flavour.

Fresh fish is San Carlo’s speciality, featuring a fish counter in the centre of the restaurant. Guests can choose their catch or opt for something else from the superb selection of Italian cuisine.

Whether you are looking for a restaurant to enjoy a romantic meal for two, or host a special celebration for lots of people, San Carlo 
in Leicester is more than capable of catering for any requirements and any party size. As a restaurant that has been favoured by various celebrities in the past, who knows who you might be rubbing shoulders with. Due to the popularity of this venue, pre-booking is highly recommended.

last updated: 19 Sep 2019
38-40 Granby Street, Leicester, LE1 1DE
0116 251 9332 ex 24