My Lunch at Bapi Ristorante

Bapi Ristorante

Reviewed by David Rozek on 12/16/2011

As for lunch at Bapi, it was really very good. I had the Antipasto di Cristiano appetizer that was plentiful. It came with thinly sliced imported Italian prosciutto with fresh mozzarella, roasted peppers, roasted cherry tomato, and imported green olives from Ceriniola. It was an excellent combination of robust flavors.For an entrée, I enjoyed the homemade ricotta cheese and spinach ravioli filling with butter and sage sauce. It is a dish not to be missed and I love dipping my bread in the sauce. Something that I normally wouldn’t have ordered but the lady two tables over from me was telling her friend how amazing it was so I had to try it.

The appetizer was great, the entrée was perfect, so the dessert must be the let down – I was wrong again. The Panna Cotta was better than the Chef stated and I just can not describe how creamy and wonderful it was. All I can do is say – Wow, what a meal from start to finish. Bapi Ristorante is truly a hidden gem and Chef Cristiano Bassani is a rare find.

I may not be the best writer or foodie in the world, but I sure do know good food and Bapi is just that – GOOD FOOD. Bapi Ristorante is located at:

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Dinner at Pelago Ristorante

Redefining Italian Cuisine

Pelago is very romantic! The staff here is so friendly and helpful, not the least bit pretentious at all, no matter what your age or race (which trust me, happens A LOT in the city).  Our server, Antonio, was really nice, we told him our budget and he helped us pick out the perfect bottle of wine that was in our range.  For starters, we ordered the Scamorza con Insalata di Ruccola e Pomodorini (Aged Buffalo Mozzarella Cheese Seared with Arugula and Tomato Salad), which was absolutely delicious and filled with such fresh ingredients.

For our entrees we had the Tonnarelli alle Melanzane e Mozzarella (Square Spaghetti with Eggplant, Fresh Tomato and Mozzarella) and the Bistecca di Manzo ai Funghi e Cipolla Candita (Sirloin Steak with Sauteed Carmalized Onions and Mushrooms), both were made with such great flavor that words can not describe the love that went into making each dish, but I will try.

The steak was big enough for two and the homemade fresh to order spaghetti was very tasty and filling.  For dessert we had the Frollino (Cookie Ring filled with Mascarpone Sabayon, Banana and Blueberry Sorbet), which I felt like screaming out loud as to how wonderful each bite truly was.  I normally do not order desserts, but Pelago’s Chef has a reputation for making truly excellent desserts.  Everything about this Pelago Ristorante and Chef Mauro Mafrici is true. It is the Best Upscale Italian Restaurant in Chicago, so stop reading this and GO.

About the Food

Mauro Mafrici is a Michelin starred Italian chef who has worked in some  of the greatest international kitchens and luxury resort hotels of the world. His long resume of prestigious experiences in revered establishments culminated in the opening of his own critically acclaimed restaurant, Lo Scalco, in New York City which earned a coveted Michelin star in its first year open. Mauro has now brought his talents to Chicago with PELAGO.

The basis of Mauro’s cuisine is “sapori veri’: true, honest, genuine flavors used masterfully to create new sensations, forms and colors. Fresh seasonal ingredients from Italian and local sources will tantalize every taste bud as Mauro allows each bite to speak for itself in a clean, straightforward flavorful vocabulary.    With each endeavor Mauro continues to look for new ways to incorporate regional Italian ingredients as he redefines Italian cooking.

To enjoy a great meal at Pelago, please click here.