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Tamarkin Likes Dining Quick at Francesca's Forno; Bruno Finds Quay Approachable; More

Francesca's Forno
Francesca's Forno
Photo: Tim Hiatt

David Tamarkin thinks of Francesca's Forno as a fuel-up and go type of place. In fact he thinks if you "linger" and "stick it out...you probably won't have a very good time." He raves about the pomodoro with hen egg and guanciale and thinks "you won't find a better combination." He finds the space post-renovation is "awfully similar" to before and although "the menu exhibits an adventurous spirit" most of the items on the menu are "played safe." For the most part, "Francesca's is good at safe." Overall, "this is like any other Francesca’s spot. Stick to the program. Don’t stray." [TOC]

Pat Bruno believes that Quay plays it smart. The menu seems to him, "back to the basics" in a positive sense, "very approachable and quite affordable." The flatbread was "excellent" and the mixed fish fry was good "although tweaking is needed with the fries." He tried two desserts, the "upside-down key lime tart"and the "s'mores confection" and enjoyed them both. [Sun Times]

Although not a typical restaurant for Old Irving Park, Mike Sula thinks Al Dente has found an audience. Sula describes chef Javier Perez's style almost as "meat-and-potatoes" but he adds in a number of "flourishes," "occasionally and with a light touch." Perez sometimes goes "overboard" and gives you the "occasional head-scratcher" but when he "practices simplicity" and "draws on the neighborhood farmers market" he truly shines. The filet mignon "is perfectly cooked" and "he pulls off winning dishes" like the garbage salad with "calamari steaks marinated in guajillo that must have been carved from the Kraken." Although there is some work that needs to be done, Sula thinks "it shows a lot of potential, and deserves to be recognized beyond its neighborhood." [Reader]

Francesca's Forno

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

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