Piccolo Sogno broke out of the gates with a furry, and several years later they have still maintained an incredible pace within the Chicago food scene. One of the constants diners will find is the exquisitely simple, yet delectable food served in a warm environment. Co-Owner Ciro Longobardo and Chef/Co-owner Tony Priolo have poured their hearts and souls into this restaurant and you can taste their passion in every bite, and can feel it in every smile from the super friendly staff.
This spot showcases rustic Italian at its best. Not only is Piccolo home to some of my favorite pizza in Chicago, like the Bianca con rucula with crisp crust, fresh arugula, olive oil, mozzarella, and shaved Parmesan reggiano, but I happen to have favorites in every other course on the menu, too. Here’s my guide to my own personal favorites at this beloved restaurant…
Start with the griglia mista – grilled calamari, shrimp, octopus, arugula, lemon and caper infused olive oil and the burrata con culatello – hand stuffed mozzarella with artisan style prosciutto (pictured above). The pasta course features hand-made pasta that make you feel like you’re in Italy. My favorites are the stracci di faro featuring faro flour pasta triangles, asparagus, leeks, garlic and truffle oil, and the paglia e fieno con vitello – ‘straw and hay’ green and white ribbon noodles with veal ragu. The pesce intero, wood-fired fish of the day, baked with Sicilian sea salt crust, braised fennel, citrus and caper reduction, is often the Branzino (a European sea bass). This heavenly and lightly roasted fish is presented whole table-side before being de-boned in the kitchen.
The knowledgeable team can help you select wine to pair with any dish for your lunch or dinner. With over 400 expert selections, however, it might take a little time to decide.
To top off this feast, I cannot leave without the chocolate-hazelnut warm cake, complete with a gooey center, caramelized hazelnuts and hazelnut gelato. Did I mention they make the gelato in house?
These are just a few of the reasons I have this restaurant’s number programmed into my phone. I could visit this wonderful Italian spot three times a week and it would never get old. If you haven’t checked it out before, I encourage you to do so and share your favorite dishes with us!
The Locale: 464 N. Halsted Street, 312.421.0077
All photos from Piccolo Sogno’s Facebook page.