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Riccardo Trattoria

View Map2119 N. Clark St., Chicago
Tel: (773) 549-0038
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Editorial Review of Riccardo Trattoria

A Northern Italian eatery.
photo: Steph Yiu
Want to really impress your date? Don't waste your time with overpriced restaurants that dress up so-so food with all sorts of bells and whistles. Take your amore to Riccardo Trattoria, a completely unpretentious, wholesome restaurant that provides solid Italian cuisine.

My date's appetite was satisfied with the breast of pheasant, but what pleased him more was our $50 tab, surprisingly low considering how elegant and filling the meal was. Chef Riccardo Michi is generous with ingredients but not overwhelming with portion size, and his light and flavorful pastas bask in the perfect amount of sauce. And when it comes to ingredients, Michi hand-shops for produce, selecting many items, like the prosciutto with buffalo mozzarella antipasti, with care.

The atmosphere is one of passion: passion for food. Riccardo grew up in a family of chefs, and he crafts a heavy portion of his Northern Italian dishes using his mother's recipes. His staff consists of his wife as sous-chef and his niece and a friend as servers, who insist that the key to Riccardo's cooking is an outstanding attention to detail.

And it shows: Riccardo has traveled the world and uses many unusual ingredients in his otherwise traditional cooking, such as heart of palm in the beef carpaccio and wild boar sausage mixed with orecchiette pasta.

Average cost: $21-$30

Centerstage Reviewer: Steph Yiu

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5-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 5-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday; 5-9 p.m. Sunday

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chicago, metromix