Sleek light fixtures dangle from Kohana Japanese Restaurant's ceiling and subtly illuminate a tidily minimal fleet of indigo and white chairs, booths abutting wavy-lined wall paneling, and plates featuring eats carefully crafted and presented by the chefs. Sharply dressed in the only two colors that can be worn together, black and white, servers march out with precisely sliced sections of signature dishes such as the Phoenix specialty roll, which combines spicy tuna, snow crab, and avocado with a multifaceted dressing. Non-sushi selections, such as crunchy shrimp tempura and baked salmon with eel sauce, also pair well with Kohana's selection of wine, beer, and sake.
The diversity of Relish's offerings—from its dine-in menu of salads and sandwiches to its bakery and frozen yogurt—represents the eatery's evolution from a small deli to a full-blown restaurant. Those early diner favorites, such as tuna melts and meatball subs, still fill bellies alongside bread bowls full of hot pasta. On the bakery side, custom cakes, gourmet cupcakes, and pies brimming with fresh fruit line the counters or await pickup for a future event. On Friday nights, the venue comes to life with the thrumming music of live local bands, followed by family-friendly Saturdays, on which kids eat free without having to pickpocket napping subway commuters.
For more than four decades, the Salerno family has been catering to peckish Chicagoans' cravings for fresh, homemade Italian cuisine. Michael Salerno's Pizzeria in Glenview continues the family tradition, specializing in Southern Italian comfort fare, as well as customizable thin- and thick-crust pizzas. The menu showcases a lip-smacking litany of authentic dishes and saucy specialties, including the seafaring linguine with mussels ($13.95) and the sautéed veal scallopini, replete with garlic, mushrooms, and onions ($16.95). Ricotta-and-mozzarella-stuffed shells with marinara or meat sauce ($10.95) provide a cheesy counterpoint to baccala, baked fillets of codfish with black olives, capers, onions, and sliced potatoes ($13.95). Meat-free diners can feast on vegetarian paninis ($7.50), and meat-loving diners can stuff maws with meatball sandwiches ($6.50). Salerno's offers dough-disk aficionados a completely personalized pizza experience, allowing diners to choose between thin and thick crust, as well as a hodgepodge of fresh toppings. Create an aromatic and amorous atmosphere with a large cheese pizza ($16.50) piled with fresh garlic, hot giardiniera, anchovies, and onions ($0.75 per topping), and conclude your meal with a sweet bite of a homemade cannoli ($2.50 each) or gelato ($3.95 for a small) before carving your initials into your significant other’s smartphone.
The pizza pros at Michael’s Pizza knead freshly made dough into circular palettes before slathering house-made tomato sauce, creamy mozzarella cheese, and a mélange of high-quality toppings. Michael’s menu includes masterpieces of handmade subs, pastas, salads, strombolis, and calzones.
Edelweiss's rustic Bavarian décor complements a mouth-watering billow of scents and sights, from succulent sandwiches to a daily selection of traditional sweets. The menu transports gastronomes into delectable Deutsch dining, much like the pumpernickel-paved autobahn, with heaping schnitzel sandwiches ($7.99) flanked by german potato salad, and currywurst platters, which showcase a duo of bratwursts cloaked in curry sauce ($8.99). Parched wurst-wolfers can swig one of Edelweiss' German beers or explore the eatery's rotating cast of fresh-baked sweets, such as black forest tortes, apple strudel, and a variety of sugar-free options. Edelweiss's traditional breakfast includes cold cuts, two rolls, and preserves ($8.79), while the Polish alternative ($8.79) taps the taste-bud-trouncing power of kielbasa.
Inspired by the concept that potatoes are "the new pasta," Potato Bowl drapes hand-cut fries and baked potatoes with unconventional toppings that range from garlic parmesan alfredo to thai chili sauce. Drawing ingredients from locally harvested vegetables and beef from local farmers, Potato Bowl's chefs create each potato topper from scratch. The gluten-free and MSG-free bowls include the ClarksVegas, which is topped with black-bean turkey chili and can also be used to lure raccoons into your boss’s filing cabinets.