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Forno Rosso Pizzeria Napoletana - excellent wood fired pizza

Forno Rosso Pizzeria Napoletana - excellent wood fired pizza
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  • Post #31 - July 27th, 2014, 10:54 am
    Post #31 - July 27th, 2014, 10:54 am Post #31 - July 27th, 2014, 10:54 am
    madopal wrote:I was there this weekend as well, and it's clear they're fighting some neighborhood pizza perceptions.

    I was at Forno Rosso last Monday with 4 other guys for an early lunch. It was not busy, two other tables in the two hours we where there, but pizza was terrific and one of the fellows said it was the best meal, not just pizza, he's had all year.

    Forno Rosso, count me a fan!
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #32 - July 28th, 2014, 9:51 am
    Post #32 - July 28th, 2014, 9:51 am Post #32 - July 28th, 2014, 9:51 am
    Let me throw in a recommendation for the Mais pizza: a white pizza with corn, cheese and prosciutto. Unique and delicious.
  • Post #33 - July 29th, 2014, 7:40 pm
    Post #33 - July 29th, 2014, 7:40 pm Post #33 - July 29th, 2014, 7:40 pm
    I had lunch here yesterday and I did enjoy it. A few caveats, however:

    Service wasn't great, mainly because there was only one server for the entire restaurant. With no host to seat patrons in an area the poor server could adequately manage, people were scattered throughout the restaurant and outside patio.

    It took over 20 minutes to get a menu (with maybe, at that time, only 4 other tables present). I ordered a Negroni, and it took the server nearly a half hour to finally admit (after what looked like a frantic attempt to look up a recipe on her smart phone) that she didn't know what it was. After I explained the recipe to her, I finally got my watery, stingy little cocktail ($10).

    The pizza came just minutes after I ordered and I did enjoy it quite a bit. However, mine was substantially undercooked relative to the photos upthread. If you like a bit of char (even a little bit), you'd better make it known, or at least ask them to not cut your pizza so they can toss it back in the oven if need be.

    I'll still go back, but hopefully management will invest more time in training their staff (server knew next to nothing about the menu, especially the relatively rare Italian beers they carry) and do a better job planning for the lunch rush.

    Seems like I caught them on a bad day / new server day, whatever.
  • Post #34 - August 14th, 2014, 7:00 am
    Post #34 - August 14th, 2014, 7:00 am Post #34 - August 14th, 2014, 7:00 am
    PreFlopRaise13 wrote:I spoke with Nick recently and he mentioned another location in the city is in the works. I can't remember the exact location but I believe it is in the downtown area.


    So it looks like this will be in the West Loop, per Crain's (http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/ ... a-invasion)

    Super excited for this, although I worry about the impact on my fav mom & pop shop, Pizzeria del Mercato. With this opening and the others in the area, within walking distance there will be the following pizza options:
    Pizzeria del Mercato
    Forno Rosso
    Pizza East
    Old Fifth
    Malnati's
    Parlor Pizza Bar
    Nellcote
    Giordano's
    Vincenzo's
    Salerno's
    D'Amato's
    Macello

    Longer walk:
    Coalfire
    Toni's
    Tortorice's
  • Post #35 - August 28th, 2014, 9:34 pm
    Post #35 - August 28th, 2014, 9:34 pm Post #35 - August 28th, 2014, 9:34 pm
    Had an excellent experience in Forno Rosso maiden voyage . The food, the service, the vibe... all exceeded expectations. Naturally nice people serving great pizza in a comfortable setting. So glad to hear they're opening in the W. Loop. As critical as I can be, I can only be happy when someone does it right.
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #36 - September 23rd, 2014, 8:20 pm
    Post #36 - September 23rd, 2014, 8:20 pm Post #36 - September 23rd, 2014, 8:20 pm
    I finally made it here for lunch and I'll echo the praises. I had a pizza with Joseph's sausage and it was terrific. The crust and the ratio of ingredients were all solid, with the tomato sauce in particular really standing out. Just a hint of sweetness, not too acidic and just fantastic tomato flavor. The sausage from Joseph's was also very good, with a nice (but not too assertive) fennel flavor. As for the crust, and just for comparison purposes, I thought it was quite good, though I find that the crust at Spacca Napoli has a little more flavor. But I really enjoyed my inaugural visit and will absolutely be back.
  • Post #37 - December 20th, 2014, 7:51 pm
    Post #37 - December 20th, 2014, 7:51 pm Post #37 - December 20th, 2014, 7:51 pm
    Had two pizzas here and both were excellent. Particularly liked the white pizza with corn, prosciutto and mozzarella. Nice service and an unpretentious vibe. I would rate Spacca Napoli's crust a bit better (that's my gold standard), but these are worthy pies. Pity it's so damn inconvenient to get to from the North Shore.
  • Post #38 - December 27th, 2014, 1:03 pm
    Post #38 - December 27th, 2014, 1:03 pm Post #38 - December 27th, 2014, 1:03 pm
    The pizzas at my last visit were very tasty (we had 3 of them: Margherita, Friuli and a special that included sausage, red onions and fresh mozzarella) but across the board, the crusts were spongier than I remembered from my previous visit. Again, very nice depth of flavor through the entire chew and high quality toppings that were applied in a judicious, balanced manner. But the outer crust lacked a certain crispiness that I was pretty sure was there last time. Maybe I'm just remembering my last experience incorrectly, as I know the Napoletana pizzas are typically a bit soft in the crust, especially toward their centers.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #39 - March 27th, 2015, 1:33 pm
    Post #39 - March 27th, 2015, 1:33 pm Post #39 - March 27th, 2015, 1:33 pm
    Just had to post an update, as they've gotten a well-deserved GNR. Since the Trib article a while back, they've been slammed on weekends. Thankfully, they're open late, so I've been trying to get there after 9. That's been my secret on weekends. Basically, don't even try it before 8:30 on Friday or Saturday. I've seen times where the plaza lot is full as is a block east on Waveland. I'm curious as if the GNR bump will make it more insane.

    Latest from Nick was he said May, I believe, for his other location.

    Also, I had to mention the flat bread appetizer. It's just the base of a pizza, seasoned with herbs and salt. I'm surprised more places with crust as good as theirs haven't figured that out. It's amazing. I'll have to get a picture the next time I'm there.

    +1 on the Mais. I keep going back to other ones, and I keep finding nothing better than the Mais.
  • Post #40 - March 28th, 2015, 3:11 pm
    Post #40 - March 28th, 2015, 3:11 pm Post #40 - March 28th, 2015, 3:11 pm
    madopal wrote:Just had to post an update, as they've gotten a well-deserved GNR. Since the Trib article a while back, they've been slammed on weekends. Thankfully, they're open late, so I've been trying to get there after 9. That's been my secret on weekends. Basically, don't even try it before 8:30 on Friday or Saturday. I've seen times where the plaza lot is full as is a block east on Waveland. I'm curious as if the GNR bump will make it more insane.


    Apparently, lunch time is fine, too. We stopped by today (Saturday) for the first time at noon, and the place was 75% empty. I don't have much to add that hasn't been said other than the pizza completely blew my socks off. I haven't had this much joy eating pizza in a long time. I mean, I've been feeling a bit cranky and cabin fevery lately, and this pizza--that crust--was a jolt of tomato, basil, and mozzarella-laced seratonin and dopamine. Just what the good doctor ordered.
  • Post #41 - April 19th, 2015, 9:34 am
    Post #41 - April 19th, 2015, 9:34 am Post #41 - April 19th, 2015, 9:34 am
    Wednesday or Thursday of last week I was heading North down Harlem around noon for a quick dog at Mario's when I spied Guy Fieri and 2 others walking south near Forno Rosso. A couple in Mario's said they had just walked passed them. Totally speculation on my part as to where they were heading.
    Why does man kill? He kills for food. And not only food: frequently there must be a beverage.
    Woody Allen
  • Post #42 - April 19th, 2015, 10:11 am
    Post #42 - April 19th, 2015, 10:11 am Post #42 - April 19th, 2015, 10:11 am
    FYI there's a guy working at Rex's Italian Foods who has done his hair just like Fieri. Dresses like him as well. Probable that's who you saw. I think he is consciously copying Guy's style.
  • Post #43 - April 19th, 2015, 1:53 pm
    Post #43 - April 19th, 2015, 1:53 pm Post #43 - April 19th, 2015, 1:53 pm
    Any word on that West Loop location? It is currently way too far away for me to ever try their pies.
  • Post #44 - April 19th, 2015, 2:44 pm
    Post #44 - April 19th, 2015, 2:44 pm Post #44 - April 19th, 2015, 2:44 pm
    We had dinner here last night. Arrived at 7:15 and it was slammed. We waited about 20 minutes but as always it was worth it.

    We had Spiedini, Caponata, and split a arugula e prosciutto pizza. Every bite was wonderful.
  • Post #45 - April 19th, 2015, 7:37 pm
    Post #45 - April 19th, 2015, 7:37 pm Post #45 - April 19th, 2015, 7:37 pm
    botd wrote:Any word on that West Loop location? It is currently way too far away for me to ever try their pies.


    I understand that things are moving along, but permits are still needed.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #46 - April 19th, 2015, 9:15 pm
    Post #46 - April 19th, 2015, 9:15 pm Post #46 - April 19th, 2015, 9:15 pm
    Hard to imagine Forno Rosso being too far away. Have you ever gone to Harlem and Irving? From downtown you can take the Kennedy to Irving or the Ike to Harlem. Either way is pretty speedy with the edge to the Kennedy trip.
  • Post #47 - April 19th, 2015, 9:31 pm
    Post #47 - April 19th, 2015, 9:31 pm Post #47 - April 19th, 2015, 9:31 pm
    That of course assumes that one owns a vehicle. Something like 50% of people that live near the center of the city don't have vehicles, me included. Via public transportation, it's probably an hour and a half and while I am dedicated I am not that dedicated. Even if I had a vehicle it is thirty minutes from the center of the city and even further for those poor souls that live on the south side. So I find it quite easy to imagine Forno Rosso being too far away.
  • Post #48 - April 21st, 2015, 12:57 pm
    Post #48 - April 21st, 2015, 12:57 pm Post #48 - April 21st, 2015, 12:57 pm
    I believe that that Guy Fieri guy lives in Elmwood Park. I see him everywhere and just shake my head at him.

    I find that getting to Forno before 7p on a Friday is key. We usually get seated right away and by the time we leave, the place is jam packed.
  • Post #49 - June 9th, 2015, 10:36 am
    Post #49 - June 9th, 2015, 10:36 am Post #49 - June 9th, 2015, 10:36 am
    My wife and I went last night. Expectations were exceeded. Large excellent portions. Prosiutto e Arugola , calmari, and arancini. The arancini were the ones I have been looking for my entire life.
  • Post #50 - June 9th, 2015, 10:49 am
    Post #50 - June 9th, 2015, 10:49 am Post #50 - June 9th, 2015, 10:49 am
    funkyfrank wrote:The arancini were the ones I have been looking for my entire life.

    Yes! By far, the best I can ever remember having that weren't made in someone's home.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #51 - June 11th, 2015, 11:51 am
    Post #51 - June 11th, 2015, 11:51 am Post #51 - June 11th, 2015, 11:51 am
    While we're talking about good things they have...the flatbread on the appetizers is scary good. I'm amazed more places with good crusts don't do this. Just take your crust, add some herbs, oil, and salt: bang, instant amazing appetizer.

    The only downside is that you wind up eating a second pizza worth of crust, which makes it hard to save space for your pizza.
  • Post #52 - June 11th, 2015, 2:33 pm
    Post #52 - June 11th, 2015, 2:33 pm Post #52 - June 11th, 2015, 2:33 pm
    madopal wrote:While we're talking about good things they have...the flatbread on the appetizers is scary good. I'm amazed more places with good crusts don't do this. Just take your crust, add some herbs, oil, and salt: bang, instant amazing appetizer.

    The only downside is that you wind up eating a second pizza worth of crust, which makes it hard to save space for your pizza.


    Try topping that with some of the excellent made-by-Nick's-Mama caponata.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #53 - June 13th, 2015, 9:33 am
    Post #53 - June 13th, 2015, 9:33 am Post #53 - June 13th, 2015, 9:33 am
    Wasn't the location on Randolph supposed to be open by now?
  • Post #54 - July 3rd, 2015, 4:13 pm
    Post #54 - July 3rd, 2015, 4:13 pm Post #54 - July 3rd, 2015, 4:13 pm
    gullit wrote:Wasn't the location on Randolph supposed to be open by now?

    BTW, from my last visit, I heard what was up from Nick himself.

    Since the fire in 2010 at Avec, some of the regulations are being enforced a bit more strictly. Since he's got an indoor brick oven, he mirrored the venting setup he has at the current location, but apparently it didn't pass inspection. So he's had to redo the vent at his own expense. He said it was looking like it'd be open by the end of July. I did see the windows of the new location, and it looked like it was very far along.

    He did open a party room next door to the current location on Memorial Day, and that should help with the crowds that have been showing up recently. I'm personally enjoying Nick still being in Dunning, as he'll probably have to spend a ton of time down on Randolph when it opens.
  • Post #55 - September 23rd, 2015, 11:54 am
    Post #55 - September 23rd, 2015, 11:54 am Post #55 - September 23rd, 2015, 11:54 am
    Further update from Nick on the Randolph Street location: he says they're staggeringly close. Sounds like October at the latest. The party room has been doing great at the current location, so it sounds like he's happy to have the extra time to do the place up on Randolph the way he wants.

    Also, latest special I had was a white with Joseph's sausage, red onion, sun dried tomato, burrata, and oregano

    Image

    It was spectacular as usual.
  • Post #56 - September 24th, 2015, 11:08 am
    Post #56 - September 24th, 2015, 11:08 am Post #56 - September 24th, 2015, 11:08 am
    madopal wrote:Further update from Nick on the Randolph Street location: he says they're staggeringly close. Sounds like October at the latest.


    Wonderful news! Thanks.
    Gypsy Boy

    "I am not a glutton--I am an explorer of food." (Erma Bombeck)
  • Post #57 - January 29th, 2016, 2:28 pm
    Post #57 - January 29th, 2016, 2:28 pm Post #57 - January 29th, 2016, 2:28 pm
    Ok, since Steve Dolinsky has visited, I'm assuming West Loop is open. It also looks like Nick has a new menu item down there: panuozzo

    http://www.stevedolinsky.com/panuozzo-forno-rosso

    I'm definitely looking forward to seeing the new space. One of the last times I was at the Dunning location, the manager mentioned that Nick intends to split his time between the two locations, with West Loop getting more attention for now. I'm curious if he'll bring the panuozzos up to the NW side.
  • Post #58 - March 21st, 2016, 11:34 am
    Post #58 - March 21st, 2016, 11:34 am Post #58 - March 21st, 2016, 11:34 am
    Who knew we needed more pizza downtown?

    http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/ ... lph-street

    FORNO ROSSO
    1048 W. Randolph St.
    Chicago, IL 60607
    312-243-6000
    www.FornoRossoPizzeria.com
    Hors D'oeuvre: A ham sandwich cut into forty pieces.
    - Jack Benny
  • Post #59 - June 25th, 2019, 10:14 am
    Post #59 - June 25th, 2019, 10:14 am Post #59 - June 25th, 2019, 10:14 am
    A group of 12 of us dined at Forno Rosso on Harlem last night.

    Restaurant was nice enough to seat our group off in a separate dining area. Service was good/efficient. Pizzas were delicious.

    Parking in the lot was a little more difficult than I remember but enough nearby parking on Harlem.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #60 - June 25th, 2019, 10:48 am
    Post #60 - June 25th, 2019, 10:48 am Post #60 - June 25th, 2019, 10:48 am
    The pistachio pesto and sausage pizza is really something special.

    One odd thing though is how the mozzarella looks on their pies (Randolph location). It always looks like it was... oh, let’s be polite and say extruded from a cheese gun.

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