We were out at the Chicago Botanic Gardens (I have lived in Chicago practically my whole life and, amazingly, only discovered this place recently--it is fabulous and currently my favorite place to take Nugget) the other day and wanted to get dinner afterward. I was really intent on having a good meal with a glass of wine but it had to be a kid-friendly place. The difficulty of which was really pissing me off. Why is there no Chuck E. Cheese for the foodie set??? I can't be the only parent who thinks this is a gap in the market.
It was also complicated by the fact that we were out in Glencoe and I don't know the suburbs at all. And frankly, I don't have a lot of faith in the quality of restaurants in the suburbs. Usually I would give in to my husband's passion for Fuddruckers, which we don't have in the city, but I really didn't want a hamburger. So we powered up the Garmin and scrolled through the nearby Italian restaurants, then decided to drive by two that were next to each other about a half-mile away. One was basically an outbuilding in the parking lot of the other, more upscale place. We went for the hole in the wall -- which was aptly named Francesco's Hole in the Wall.
It was FANTASTIC. I have to revise my prejudice against suburban restaurants. Slightly. They served hot, delicious garlic bread when we sat down, and kept bringing more (although I might have preferred they didn't because I couldn't resist the temptation to keep eating it). They had cheap house wine which was pretty good. My pasta was delicious, and Trent--who is a total snob about fresh seafood--enjoyed his pasta with lobstertail and various shellfish or whatever (I don't like shellfish so I tried not to notice what he was eating). And the best part is that the waitress was absolutely amazing about Nugget. She brought him ice cream and made him a rattle out of a takeout container with some creamers inside and generally tried to help us keep him happy so we could eat in peace. Soooo much better than Chuck E. Cheese.