Robert and Nicole Stai have a passion for the outdoors. Combined, they have been avid adventurers more than 50 years?including several years of marriage. The Stai's opened The Gear ReSource Outfitters in order to equip others for adventures of their own. They keep their shop stocked with the industry's newest gear, as well as lightly used and consignment items brought in by customers or bears trying to clear room in their dens for flat-screen screen TVs. More than just a source for outdoor apparel, Robert and Nicole also help customers put their purchases to work with guided adventures, including canoeing and kayaking trips in the summer and snowshoe treks in the winter.
The Cove's rock 'n' roll-infused menu fends off grumbling belly drum solos with a wealth of musically dubbed pub plates. Kick off mealtime medleys with an order of Onion Ringz of Fire ($5.95) before moving on to mouthwatering main courses. Satiation-seeking diners can delve into the Nat King Cove burger basket, a double-stacked burger appetizingly accessorized with all the trimmings ($9.95), or tastily toboggan on the saucy slopes of the Dixie chicken alfredo pizza, replete with garlic chicken and alfredo sauce on a thin, crispy crust (12", $13). Sups may be paired with sips of beer, such as Summit pale ale ($4 for 16 oz.) or a globally sourced selection of wine, such as the Italian Gionelli pinot grigio ($4 a glass, $15 a bottle). The Cove accommodates petite prodigies with a kids’ menu, sure to satisfy those who still play Wipeout on pots and pans and rock out with pet rocks.
Legend has it Deano and Eddie Panino worked for a family in the Bronx that may have been connected to the mob. Wanting to transition into a business where the only danger of sleeping with the fishes was falling asleep next to a tuna melt, the two opened a sandwich shop. Inspired by pizza and traditional Italian sandwiches, the brothers combined the two into their version of a panino?a sandwich made on flatbread that is baked and then rolled up. The fillings are endless, ranging from hot dogs and chili in the Chicago Overcoat to chicken, three cheeses, and dressing in the Caesar Cardini. Panino Brothers also serves burgers, pizza, wings, and steak.
But diners don't just congregate at the restaurant for the food; the welcoming atmosphere also draws them in. An electronics showroom worth of flat-screen TVs hang on the walls, and there are several Golden Tee machines. Guests can even push a few tables together to play poker. And happy-hour specials run for much of the day and late night, including 2 to 6 p.m. and 9 to close.
Located inside the Apple Place Bowl entertainment center, the casual Bogart's Place pub also offers entertainment of its own. The bar's cheery environs host weekly events ranging from Thursday-night team pub trivia to Double Ditty's, a live dueling piano show where the competitors must walk their pianos 10 paces before playing. To keep visitors fueled, the pub's menu spans from casual plates such as chicken wings and cheese curds to signature sandwiches such as the Look Out burger—a half-pound beef patty topped with ham and cheese. Bartenders pair these dishes with a range of beers and top-shelf liquors. And in warmer weather, the aromas of cooking and the sounds of revelry waft onto a newly-remodeled outdoor patio.
Executive Chef Keith Johnson pairs premium ingredients with homemade touches to build Chart House's menu of hearty gourmet fare. Canadian walleye, scallops wrapped in apple-smoked bacon, hand-cut steaks of premium corn-fed cattle, and Alaskan snow crab form the basis of mouthwatering dishes, with unique elements including housemade applesauce, seven-spice butter, and grade-A pure maple syrup enhancing the already heady flavors. A Friday night fish fry welcomes guests to the softly lit dining room throughout the season of Lent, and regular live music events fill the air with sounds more melodious than the yawns of an opera singer.
The restaurant, which opened in 1968, is part of a larger event center that has indoor and outdoor reception sites used for weddings, corporate events, and Juggalo Championship Wrestling competitions. Located on the shores of Lake Kingsley, Chart House offers picturesque lakeside and garden views.
Mario and Nina Pelagalli use recipes passed down from family members from Rome and Naples as the blueprints for Casa Nostra Pizzeria & Ristorante's Italian cuisine. As the owners revealed to Sun Thisweek, Nina's mother creates the restaurant's sauces from scratch to ensure they carry on the family tradition of culinary excellence. Her concoctions blanket the 25 pastas on Casa Nostra's dinner menu, which also includes pizzas, paninis, and veal and chicken entrees. Having recently taken over a neighboring bar, the Pelagallis' restaurant now accommodates even more guests with roomier dining quarters and an expanded liquor stock. Evening entertainment includes Frank Sinatra tributes that pay homage to the crooner's singing ability and talent for intermittently firing blue lasers from his eyes.