Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Angelina Ristorante

Location: 3561 N Broadway
Cost: About $25 per person

In typical Memorial day weekend fashion, my dad signed us up for Bike the Drive. Since we start riding at the crack of dawn, he always likes to spend the night beforehand at my place in the city so that we can just ride over to the start first thing in the morning. A bunch of guys from our neighborhood partake in the ride as well, and the Nissenbergs follow similar suit to us by coming down one night early. Since we were all downtown anyways, we figured we should meet up for dinner. For convenience, we needed to find a place relatively close to Barry and Broadway, and Italian was the requested genre. I remember a while back, the Ericas suggested I try out a favorite spot of theirs, and it fit what we needed. That's how we ended up at Angelina Ristorante.

Logistics
We were able to lock down a reservation with one days notice, and it proved to be essential. They built up a pretty good line, and it felt good to waltz right past it. There's plenty of street parking nearby. The restaurant is setup to feel like some rustic Italian home. Some of the pictures were crooked, and old wine bottles lined the walls. It still kept plenty of its boys town charm with Neil Diamond tunes in the background. We got sat in a table that was pretty cramped, but then I remembered that our other options nearby (like Mia Francesca) were much worse in regards to space.

Our server was very nice and attentive although not that knowledgeable of the wine list. Our food came out rather quickly, and the bus boys were very efficient. They even took away Andy's extra side of garlic on multiple occasions. It was a bit of a mess when the food came out since they didn't know where any of the dishes went, and the table was already crowded. The prices matched well with the portions. Most of the pasta dishes were around $16 while most of the protein based entrees were around $20.

The Food
We got the ball rolling with a few salads for the table to share. We split the Caesar, the Insalata di Barbabietole, and the specialty Peach Salad. With plenty of beets and hearts of palm, the Insalata di Barbabietole was my clear favorite. The caesar was rather plain and lifeless. The peach salad had a nice apricot dressing, but it overpowered everything else.

The Caesar Salad

The Barbabietole

 The Special Peach Salad

For the main course my mom got the Veal Marsala, my dad got the Fettucini Bolognese, Andy got the Linguine Mare, Sandy got the Fusili con Pollo, Heather got the Beet and Goat Cheese Ravioli, Corey got the Ricotta Cheese Gnocchi, and I got the Pollo Angelina. I wasn't impressed with the cheese based gnocchi and thought it was way too mushy. The bolognese had a rich and meaty sauce that tied things together nicely. I thought the veal was a bit dry and that the sauce could've had a richer taste. The chicken was great with a crispy skin and moistness to each bite. It came with a side of sausage that was a bit dry but had a spicy kick. Instead of sticking around for dessert we walked over to Windy City Sweets for some ice cream.

The Ricotta Cheese Gnocchi

The Fusili con Pollo

The Veal Marsala

The Fettucini Bolognese

The Linguini Mare

The Pollo Angelina

 The Beet and Goat Cheese Ravioli

Overall
I found the menu to be hit or miss at Angelina Ristorante. Still, the hits were strong enough to outweigh the weaker dishes. If I'd stuck to the barbabietole and the chicken, it would've been perfect. I'm giving them 3.5 out of 5 Pearls.


Angelina Ristorante on Urbanspoon

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