What I love about Monteverde's menu is how approachable and affordable it is. For the area and caliber of food, they could easily be charging way more than they are. Case in point: the wine list. There's something for every budget. We chose a $36 bottle of wine that was fantastic. Feeling like splurging? You can certainly do that too. While you're deciding what food to order, you're treated with housemade breadsticks. The night we dined, the varieties included rye, and olive and rosemary.
|Housemade Rosemary & Rye Breadsticks|
|Artichoke & Sunchoke Crostini|
For our main course, we had a hard time deciding what we wanted, especially since we read so much about a variety of dishes. Our server was great at providing recommendations, but everything just sounded so yummy. Ultimately we decided on two pasta dishes. The first is a MUST TRY: the cacio whey pepe. They take housemade al dente bucatini and serve it with Pecorino Romano, ricotta whey, and a four peppercorn blend. This dish is incredibly rich but you'll want to lick the plate clean. The black pepper flavor is strong but pleasant, and the sauce was velvety smooth. I know we're only a few weeks into the new year, but man, this is one of the best things I've eaten all year.
|Cacio Whey Pepe|
Some of the other dishes that caught our attention (we were seated near the kitchen after all!), included the cannelloni saltimbocca, and the ragu alla Napoletana, which is a heaping portion of fusilli, sausage, meatballs, and pork shank!
|Lasagna al Forno|
Although we were stuffed full of carbs, we pushed onward to dessert. We heard the salted butterscotch budino was a favorite, but we opted for the sbrisolona cookie sundae with sesame praline and milk and honey ice creams, caramel, and banana. The cookie was crumbled up and layered throughout the sundae, adding a nice crispy bite between layers of luscious housemade ice cream. It was the perfect portion, and a lovely way to end our meal. Monteverde recently added a dark chocolate ganache tart with candied kumquats and toasted marshmallow that looked INSANE (please try it and let me know how it is!).
|Sbrisolona Cookie Sundae|
Our meal at Monteverde was a treat. Not only did we have an awesome table that kept us out of the loud and often cramped dining room, we had wonderful service, an extremely knowledgeable server, and fantastic and affordable food.
I'm giving Monteverde 4 ghosts out of 5!
1020 W. Madison St.
Chicago, IL 60607