I see there isn't already a topic about Piccolo Sogno Due, only one about its sister restaurant, Piccolo Sogno
. So without further ado...
For those who aren't familiar with either one, the very popular Piccolo Sogno was opened in 2008 by Chef Tony Priolo and Ciro Longobardo in River West, at Grand and Halsted. They decided to open a second location, and teamed up with Chef Todd Stein, the founding chef at the now-closed Cibo Matto and at the Florentine. Piccolo Sogno Due opened a couple of months ago in River North, on Clark Street just north of the river. It's open for lunch and dinner.
I had dinner there tonight, and it was thoroughly outstanding. It has a lot in common with Piccolo Sogno, including a fairly spacious layout (with a noise level that is only moderately high, not at all oppressive), available outdoor seating (along Clark Street and above the river), some of the best bread service you'll find anywhere, extremely knowledgeable and helpful servers, and delicious contemporary Italian food. Even Ciro was there greeting customers at the hoststand. The only significant difference is that Chef Stein's menu has more emphasis on seafood than at the original location. Oh, and there's more natural light than at the original, with big picture windows facing Clark Street and the river. (I loved the layout; we sat at a table in the corner, but it was angled 45 degrees so neither of us was facing away from the room.)
I started with gamberi (wood oven roasted prawns) while my companion had pesciolini (crispy floured white bait - seemed like fried smelt), and both were very good. We split an order of the candito ("Striped pasta stuffed with foie gras, topped with caramelized onions and aged balsamic") and I really loved this dish; it was topped with a slice of sauteed foie gras, yum! We both had a daily special of razza (oven roasted skate wing) which was delicious, the best skate I've ever had. They had four desserts - cannoli, semifreddo, a chocolate-pistachio mousse, and something coffee-flavored - plus gelato and cheeses, and we both skipped them. (Frankly, I was hoping for some kind of panna cotta, having enjoyed Stein's amazing cardamom panna cotta at Cibo Matto and Priolo's outstanding saffron panna cotta at Piccolo Sogno, but there was none, oh well.)
I suggest making reservations in advance, as they were full the entire time we were there (roughly 6:30 to 9:00 on a Tuesday).
This was a wonderful dinner, and maintains the excellence already established at the original Piccolo Sogno. I heartily recommend Piccolo Sogno Due for those seeking excellent Italian cuisine and/or terrific seafood.
Piccolo Sogno Due
340 N. Clark St.