the varallo family ABOUT PESTO

Our History

Whether you’re craving simple marinara sauce or lusting for the finest pasta, South Philadelphia has one of the largest numbers of top-notch Italian restaurants in the U.S. Ristorante Pesto is one at the top of that list.

This exquisite restaurant is operated and owned by one of South Philly’s established restaurant families, the Varallos, who still remember how food tasted in Italy. And they capture those flavors here at Pesto.

Giovanni Varallo owns Pesto with his wife, Concetta. Giovanni and Maria Varallo-Facenda are the chefs. The restaurant opened March 2003 and has been going strong ever since.

Pesto Experience

The kitchen produces a large menu of unique veal, pasta and seafood dishes. The homemade gnocchi are made of potatoes with a glazed cream pesto sauce. Plus, a house specialty is the Portabella alla Parmigiana. It’s portabella mushrooms prepared in a rose sauce topped with parmesan and mozzarella cheese along with lump crabmeat. And, if that doesn’t get your mouth watering, the veal chop stuffed with prosciutto and fontina cheese heals all wounds. But for the most part, all of Pesto’s dishes are something to be said for.

If family tradition with great food and atmosphere is what you crave, then Ristorante Pesto is definitely the place for you. Stop in and see for yourself.


Ristorante Pesto has been voted the #5 for BEST EVERYDAY EATS Restaurant in the U.S. by We promise to provide excellent food and service to our customers.

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