Formento's - Chicago
The throwback Italian-focused restaurant pays homage to those red sauce eateries of yesteryear with big personalities. Formento's,partially owned by the guys behind Balena in Lincoln Park, is boisterous and attracts a lively crowd as soon as it opens for dinner.
Its specialties range from Nonna's meatballs and chicken parm to a nine-layer cake. Of course, there's chicken Vesuvio on the menu as well as house-made mozzarella that's topped with lemon and Bottarga--a delicacy of salted, cured fish roe.
Located in the West Loop's famed Randolph Street restaurant row, Formento's was wise enough to create a pre-game menu for those hitting up the United Center. The three- or four-course feast is served family style and includes popular dishes like brick chicken and meatballs.