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Look Inside Francesca's Forno, Re-opening Tonight; Adjacent Doughnut Shop on Hold

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view of the bar with high-boy tables in front for drinking and snacking.
view of the bar with high-boy tables in front for drinking and snacking.

[Photo: Tim Hiatt Photography]

After being closed for seven weeks to remodel, Francesca's Forno re-opens tonight with a new look and entirely new menu. The atmosphere is much more vibrant with accordion windows, more communal tables and a colorful chalkboard above the kitchen. The bar, which has been moved to the front of the restaurant, adds a pop of color with red mosaic tiles on sections of the backsplash. Seating is available for 88 and there are additional highboy tables where people can stand for a quick drink or snack.

The menu has gone through a complete overhaul with new chef Larry Tio at the helm, and has much more of an emphasis on seasonal ingredients. Most of the plates are also larger in size to encourage sharing. Menu items such as the Granturco Arrostito, pieces of sweet summer corn with grana padano and truffle oil; Fetta d' Anguria, watermelon slices topped with ricotta salata, olive, roasted tomatoes and red onion; and the Fazzoletti al Granchio, with blue crab, brown butter, asparagus and peas are very summer inspired and much more of a modern take on Italian than Forno's previous menu.

The wine list has a big focus on eco-friendly, organic and sustainable wines, and all of their pizzas are now made with organic hydro-milled flour. The bar offerings have also been expanded with craft beers and specialty cocktails. Due to the high demand for a catering menu, Forno has added one giving an option for their food, rather than just the Francesca's food that was previously the only catering option.

The one thing you won't see however is a doughnut shop, as plans for Glazed and Confused (which was supposed to be located out the back door of Forno) is now put on hold indefinitely. Knowing Scott Harris, we wouldn't be surprised if that changes again tomorrow.

·Francesca's Forno to Reopen in July with New Look and Menu
· Scott Harris Taking Mia Francesca Nationwide; Expanding Pizzeria Napoletana; Opening a Doughnut Shop

Francesca's Forno Menu

Francesca's Forno

1576 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60622 773 770 0184