Vittoria cofounder Vince Romanelli hearkens back to his hometown of Alvito, Italy, with a menu of modern and Old-World Tuscan dishes. The kitchen crafts tender housemade pastas for traditional eats such as chicken cannelloni and lemon-pepper linguine tossed with shrimp, and veal osso buco simmers in white wine and spices. Beneath the barrel-vaulted ceiling of a large, open dining area, patrons can also dig into updated entrees such as a pistachio-crusted breast of chicken adorned with marsala-caramel sauce. For dessert, chefs fill tarts with lemon curd made from Vittoria's signature limoncello and surround amaretto and white-chocolate napoleons with fluctuating borders of raspberry coulis. Wines and cocktails from behind Vittoria's marble-topped bar pair with dinner or with the musical stylings of local bands nightly.
Aromas from the cuisines of China, Thailand, and Vietnam mingle in the air at Mulan Asian Bistro. Spicy red thai curry, which coats shrimp and chicken, hints at fistfuls of spice, and traditional Chinese Szechuan spicy beef lets steam trickle from USDA Choice flank steak. The pho soup’s Vietnamese noodles swim in clear golden broth at booths with wave-like swooping backs. Beneath the eatery’s wasabi-hued walls, chefs accommodate diets of all types by forging gluten-free options and tailoring the heat of spicy dishes. Patrons looking to eat at home and those who have just spotted a clingy VCR they gave away years ago dash out the door toting carry-out bags laden with fried-rice dishes and kung pao noodles.
Each year, hundreds of people flock to The Bogey Bar and Grill to watch a golf tournament they could easily see on television. And it?s not just the tournament that draws a crowd?it?s the atmosphere, the fresh fare, and the live music. The eatery keeps up this excitement all year long: Each day until at least 11 p.m., the kitchen releases its bounty?a menu of burgers, fish and chips, and baskets of fried pickles to go along with craft beers poured fresh from the bar. The Bogey also fills its huge patio space with frequent live music, spurred on by a lengthy outdoor bar that slings drinks to prevent guests from having to smuggle in flasks of vanilla extract.
Ohio may be in the Midwest, but the menu at Windy City BBQ Ribs aims to transport diners to another part of the country. Chef and pitmaster Brandon Shy lives up to his slogan of “Put some south in your mouth!” with a heaping spread of southern-style barbecue, from smoked ribs and rotisserie chicken to Dixie sides such as and potato salad and collared greens. Guests can sign their name on the eatery’s Wall of Fame after enjoying a meal in the small indoor and outdoor seating areas. The meat emporium shuts down each day when the food is gone, so calling or sending up smoke signals in advance is recommended.
Dishes as vibrant and diverse as the UN’s annual Mardi Gras celebration deck the tabletops at Kogen’s, the seventh Asian-influenced eatery borne from the Mark Pi restaurant group. Drawing inspiration from Japanese street food, Chinese dry-food markets, and upscale American cuisine, the chefs craft an artful and varied menu that embodies both traditional favorites and experimental creations. Here, helpings of pad thai and hunan chicken share real estate with kung pao lo mein and sashimi platters. The signature sushi rolls dabble in a range of flavors, for example, the Margarita roll combines spicy tuna with avocado, lime, and wasabi mayo, and the Fire Dragon roll sets tongues ablaze with tempura shrimp, spicy tuna, spicy mayo, and sriracha sauce.
For 10 years, Wholly Joe's has provided the Columbus metro area with made-to-order Chicago-style eats and treats, saving residents a trip to the eerie, ghost-laden terrain of northeastern Illinois. Joe's uses authentic Chicago-sourced ingredients (including Italian sausage, Italian beef, sport peppers, and Turano Bakery breads) to capture the Windy City's savory, meat-packed cuisine. While Joe's does offer traditional Italian and grill fare—burgers, chicken and fish sandwiches, and pastas—its commitment to the mythic triumvirate of deep-dish pizza, Chicago-style hot dogs, and Italian beef is what keeps visitors' salivary glands replacing their th's with d's. The hand-shaped deep-dish pizza ($14.99 for 12", $16.99 for 14") is made from scratch (Chicago's most abundant commodity after political corruption) and can be topped with Second City staples such as Italian sausage, bacon, and hot peppers. Encased-meat enthusiasts can sample an original all-beef hot dog ($2.75) or Polish sausage ($3.35) with mustard, relish, chopped onions, sliced red tomatoes, cucumber, kosher pickle, and sport peppers—all stuffed into a steamed poppy-seed bun like so many cans of beans in a hobo's bindle. The Italian-beef sandwich ($5.39) features a pile of succulent, thinly sliced roast beef on French bread, soaked in the natural juices of its own delicious iniquity, and can be partnered with a side of crinkle-cut fries (regular, $1.89) or a Chicago-style tamale ($1.99).