Photos courtesy of the Hernandez family

Hello, I’m Emilia! A 9-year-old Arizona native with a love of all things delicious! One of my favorite restaurants is North Italia, and I’ve been to almost all of their Arizona locations.

When you first walk in, they have some amazing decor, including my favorite, snake plants, and you are surrounded by farmhouse tables and an industrial vibe. We got to sit at our table right away and quickly ordered our appetizers! The staff were incredibly friendly and respectful. I liked that they treated me like a big kid, even though my dad says I’m little! We sat outside because it was a beautiful sunny day and got to see plants, bird, and bike rides. It was very peaceful and quiet.

The kids’ menu has your “normal” kid-friendly choices, like chicken tenders, spaghetti, and pizza. Since I’m not supposed to eat dairy, I chose a salad off the big kid menu instead, so I could also order my favorite butter-covered appetizer and not have too much dairy. The shrimp scampi appetizer is the legit reason I love North Italia. It is so buttery, and I love that it comes with toast instead of pasta! Because who doesn’t love dipping bread into buttery goodness?

I even got to watch them hand cut pasta and slice meat, which made me even more excited for the Italian farm salad because it had salami on top! I also liked how colorful the salad was because rainbow is my favorite color.

Another thing I loved is when they sang “Happy Birthday” and brought a cupcake to the table next to us. I thought it was sweet and it inspired me to order the donut holes! They were so light and fluffy and covered with powdered sugar. I think they were supposed to be dessert, but I say they would make the perfect breakfast! They even had a berry jam, which I’m pretty sure can count as a serving of fruit.

Either way, I had such a good time. I definitely recommend heading to one of their locations for an amazing kid-friendly brunch or dinner where you can literally order anything off the menu and be over the moon with your selection!

For more information on North Italia, visit


Emilia Hernandez is 9 years old and eats pretty “non-kid-like” for her age. She loves things like shrimp and snails and is pretty adventurous with food. She would rather eat a cucumber pepper salad than mashed potatoes.