We are always happy to dine out on Thursday nights as it is a great start to the upcoming weekend. Italian Colors Restaurant,which is located in Montclair Village Square in Oakland, is close to home and has always been a favorite of ours. We were pleased to hear that they had added some new seasonal spring/summer items to the menu and decided we’d better see what was new. We were warmly greeted by the host and escorted to our favorite table on the mezzanine level. The popular restaurant was filled and there is a talented guitarist who contributes to the relaxed but lively atmosphere. We noticed that they had added a charming enclosed Outdoor Patio which accommodates 25 and is perfect for dining and can also be rented for private parties.

Italian Colors Beet Salad


We started out with their special Tangerine Cosmo which was a tasty cocktail made with Grey Goose Orange Vodka , fresh tangerine and triple sec. Executive Chef/Owner Alan Carlson stopped by our table and asked us what we were in the mood for and offered some suggestions, then moved on to welcome and thank other diners as well. We always enjoy their homemade Focaccia bread because it is made fresh daily and is slightly sweet. The appetizers that we enjoyed included the fresh Cerviche which was made with sea scallops, hamachi, opaca paca with Anaheim chilies, endive and wasabi ponzu aioli and came as a unique and lovely presentation. The flavors were wonderful and it seemed to melt in your mouth! We also loved the Roasted Organic Beets with grilled asparagus, toasted hazel nuts, Tuscan clouds, watermelon radishes, turnip puree and goat cheese arancini. This was also a unique artistic presentation and the toasted hazelnuts added such a nice touch of flavor and texture. Next, we enjoyed the luscious Zuppa which was Grandma Birdie’s sweet and sour cabbage soup with beef, sour cream, tomato and dill. It had a great aroma and you could tell that it had Eastern European roots. We wished we had a Grandma Birdie! You must also have the Angus Meat Balls which were moist, perfectly seasoned, served piping hot and came with a great salsa rosa.

Italian Colors Angus Meat Balls


The entrees were both excellent. Bistecca, sliced marinated Skirt Steak on grilled peasant bread with charred sweet onions, wild Arugula Salad and French Fries was amazing! Every aspect of this entree was perfect. We loved the flavor of the meat and felt that the hearty portion also made it an excellent value. The Grilled Pacific Covina Sea Bass topped with lemon caper butter sauce had lots of fresh black pepper which is just how we like it. The Oyster mushroom and sweet pea risotto, sugar snap peas and baby carrots which accompanied the fish were delicious. We also felt that this entrée was an excellent value. You must have a side of their great Fried Brussels Sprouts made with pancetta, parmesan, crushed chilies and lemon.

Bistecca- Skirt Steak


The wine list features selections from around the world and has many reasonably priced bottles and wines by the glass. We particularly enjoyed the 2009 Keenan Napa Valley Chardonnay which paired well with our starters and the 2008 Fort Ross Sonoma Pinot Noir which paired perfectly with our entrees. Make sure you save room for dessert. We loved both the Pineapple Upside Down Cake served with Vanilla Ice Cream and Caramel which was light and lovely and the Kakao Chocolate Mousse Cake which was quite decadent.

Kakao Chocolate Mousse Cake


Italian Colors Ristorante continues to impress us. The cuisine is delicious and you feel like you truly get your money’s worth. We enjoyed some new fresh seasonal dishes as well as some of our favorites. Jason our waiter was especially professional and very congenial. We look forward to returning soon to enjoy the new outdoor dining!

By Carol & Joe Davis

Dining Detectives

Italian Colors Ristorante

2220 Mountain Blvd.

Montclair Village Square

Oakland, CA. 94611