PASTA: The Perfect Comfort Food

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What better meal to survive a dark and cold day than a tasty bowl of pasta? We’ve selected some of the hottest Italian restaurants offering the most delicious carbs to keep you warm! 

Mario’s Table – Gold Coast 

In an ever-changing culinary world of molecular cuisine and Michelin stars, there’s no better place for pasta than your local neighborhood joint. Mario’s Table has been at the corner of Dearborn and Goethe for over 25 years and definitely ticks all the boxes when it comes to the perfect pasta. Every meal starts with a basket of warm bread and olive oil, followed by your entree of choice. 

Our pasta picks: Spaghetti and Meatballs, Shrimp Scampi, Broccoli and shells, Lasagna, Linguini and Clams. Or why not try some of the best Chicken Parmesan Chicago has to offer? 

Tuscany on Taylor – Little Italy 

Tuscany on Taylor in Little Italy has been a Chicago institution for over a quarter century and offers you the best of both rich Tuscan flavors and hometown hospitality. Take a culinary trip to Northern Italy ‘cause you can’t go wrong with the classics.

Our pasta picks: Raviolacci Toscani (homemade ravioli filled with short ribs, parmigiano, fontina, and porcini mushroom cream), the Penne e Capesante (seared sea scallops in a slightly spicy tomato sauce), or the vegetarian Raviolini Pera (roasted pear, parmigiano, toasted nuts, sun-dried tomatoes and mascarpone cream). 

Topo Gigio – Old Town 

Topo Gigio is located in the heart of historic Old Town and features a modern Tuscan-style approach to Italian food. They’ve been favored by visitors and locals alike for over 25 years. At this neighborhood gem, you’ll find fourteen different kinds of pasta on the menu. When the weather is nice, don’t hesitate and ask for a table in the garden. 

Our pasta picks: Fusilloni Tocco Delicato (arugula, cherry tomatoes, fresh basil, shaved parmesan, oil and garlic) Campanelle alla Norma (arrabiata sauce with eggplant and aged ricotta), or Rigatoni al Filo di Fumo (tomato sauce with pancetta, fresh mozzarella and fresh basil, topped with pecorino).  

Italian Village – The Loop 

Italian Village Restaurants has been around for over 90 years and is home to three restaurants, each featuring their own unique ambiance and menu specialties. At the time of printing, only the main restaurant, The Village, was open (due to COVID, of course) but you’ll definitely find your pasta fix here. Chef Jose Torres prepares traditional Northern Italian specialties, including spaghetti, fettuccine Alfredo, lasagna and much more. Don’t forget to check out the portraits of the numerous celebrities, including famous athletes, that have dined here since 1927. 

Our pasta picks: all the classics! 

Mia Francesca – Lakeview 

Looking for a place to indulge in the zesty cuisine of Rome, Tuscany, Umbria and Lazio? Check out Mia Francesca in Lakeview. The art of dining comes alive with a contemporary and casually sophisticated trattoria ambiance, rustic cooking, and lots of smiles (behind the facemasks) from the friendly staff. And don’t forget the fair prices. Have a cocktail/mocktail at the stunning antique bar before you enjoy your dinner. 

Our pasta picks: Rigatoni dei Sardi (tomato sauce, Italian sausage, wild mushrooms, onions, herbs, and parmigiano), Fettuccine all’Arlecchino (shrimp, sea scallops, manila clams. Garlic, olive oil, spicy cherry tomato sauce), and Linguine al Fagottaro (a cold sauce made with homegrown tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil and fresh mozzarella over hot pasta). 

Buon Appetito!

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