Apparently Spiaggia is one of Obama’s favourite restaurants, and since we didn’t want to go so upscale, we decided to try its sister restaurant (right next door), Cafe Spiaggia, which is more casual and less expensive. It is wise to make a reservation. We were seated at one of the quaint tables for two just by a window looking out onto the Magnificent Mile. The food was great – the pasta is excellent. In particular we liked the funghi and polenta appetizer, the gnocchi with wild-boar and the tagliatelle with bologneses sauce. The house-cured sardines were good but nothing special. The bread basket was also great (although admittedly we were hungry), particularly the flat bread generously doused with parmesan. We finished off with a little bit of lemon gelato and a glass of vin santo. Other popular dishes, according to the waiter are the amish chicken with spaetzle and the pork. The food portions are american-sized generous and, unfortunately, we couldn’t fit in a secondi to try the meat. The house wine list was interesting (at least to us) with many reasonably priced bottles ($48-65) sourced from smaller Italian wineries. The service was attentive. We would defintely go back.
980 N Michigan Ave Ste 2 (basically at the end of the magnificent mile near the Drake Hotel)
Chicago, IL 60611-4501
Phone: (312) 280-2750
Price: Moderately expensive but reasonable value
Hours: Mon-Thu 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:30pm-9:30pm,
Fri-Sat 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:30pm-10:30pm,
Sun 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:30pm-9pm