Mad Jacks Sports Cafe serves a spread of eclectic eats amid rustic décor marked by high-tech accents. Diners dig into a regular or gluten-free menu of steaks, cedar-plank-grilled fish, and sandwiches under the glow of LCD screens and individual TVs stationed within every high backed booth. These flickering devices cast light across the log-cabin-themed space and tables filled with freshly spun pizzas and grill-kissed entrees. As they eat, diners can watch flames dance inside the fireplace, lament a dropped pass or an ill-purchased vowel on one of the looming TV screens, or drink in the fresh air on an outdoor patio.
Though Little Venetian opened in 2002, the family behind the operation has been treating locals to Italian flavors since 1928, when Mama and Papa Vitale opened a modest vegetable stand. Now, decades later, diners can enjoy their fresh produce whipped up into hearty meals, made in accordance with Vitale family recipes. Pastas and pizzas come coated in slow-cooked marinara or alfredo sauces, and plates of chicken parmigiano and Italian sausage warm forks and souls with homemade flavor.
Brothers Brent and Brian Pilrain pay homage to the prevalence of the Roman Empire in Europe during its heyday by combining Italian fare with cuisines from France and Germany, using ingredients and premium meats including certified Sterling Silver beef hand-selected by chef Brian himself. Inside the kitchen he gets to work by firing pizzas in the wood-burning brick oven and baking tender beef wellington. Mirroring the chef, the dining area's mural depicts a stone carving of cooks flipping disks of pizza dough in front of fiery ovens, and the nearby bartenders pour glasses of red and white wine, and pass out cold bottles of craft and imported beers. Adjacent to the dining area stands a dark timber archway, which opens to a European deli's glass display cases stocked with Boar's Head–brand gourmet meats and cheeses, lobster cannelloni, and hand-tossed calzones.
The crew at Cobblestone Cafe has manned crackling griddles and grills for more than three decades to forge a menu of time-tested diner fare. Around the forest-green eatery, patrons at outdoor tables feast on egg skillets, pancakes, and breakfast wraps or enjoy fresh air not purchased from corrupt park rangers. As the sun rises higher in the sky, plates clatter with loads of meatloaf, burgers, and french-dip sandwiches.
Ben Pratt is a student of balance. As the award-winning chef at Ingredients Cafe, he sources local and sustainable ingredients to please the palate with elegantly blended flavors. Lamb sliders feature a dressing of lemon, garlic, and saffron. Local grass-fed New York strip is served with a red wine steak sauce. And he dunks saut?ed chicken and sun dried tomatoes into a lemon caper sauce. The kitchen doesn?t stop at dinner; housemade ice cream and cakes finish off meals on a sweet note. With intimate knowledge of each flavorful bite on the menu, Chef Ben also curates a list of wines from the Americas, Europe, and Australia.
Restaurant establishment is a Kozlak family tradition. Back in 1943, Joseph and Gertrude Kozlak purchased what would eventually become the well-known Jax Café. In 1977, their son Jax Kozlak and family embarked on a massive restoration project to beautify and expand a new large space that would become Kozlak's Royal Oak Restaurant, which has since been voted Best Ambiance, Best Service, and Neighborhood Gem by OpenTable diners.
Well known for its steaks, Kozlak's serves top-shelf cuts such as bone-in tenderloin, roasted prime rib, and tenderloin filet crowned with add-ons of rich blue cheese, Cajun spices, or fresh sauteed mushrooms. Single tails of steamed African lobster recline on plates with drawn butter, and Australian sea bass receives a stuffing of spinach and crab before being topped with a butter-tarragon sauce. Kozlak's Royal Oak Restaurant boasts a screened-in patio with a canopy.