Itasca, IL

My Experience at this Suburban Italian Restaurant was Awful

Chicago Food King

I recently had a very odd experience at a local Italian restaurant called Antonio Ristorante Italiano in Itasca.

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AntoniosPhoto by Frank S/ChicagoFoodKing.

I entered the restaurant with my wife at around 5 pm on a weekday. I walked up to the front host desk waiting for someone to notice that I was there.

I looked at my wife and wondered if the place was even open or if we should leave. I waited about 10 minutes for someone to show up and still no one appeared. I peeked around the corner by the bar area and saw a man sitting at the bar having a drink. I asked the man if the restaurant had been opened and he said yes but that he did not work there.

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Empty RestaurantPhoto by Frank S/ChicagoFoodKing.

At the same time that I was asking the patron about the restaurant being open, a young waiter appeared who was on the phone. He said that the hostess did not show up and he was trying to get a hold of the owner. He asked if we would like to sit in the dining room or the lounge. I preferred the dining room and he led us to a completely empty dining room.

I sat in the quiet empty room with my wife and still asked if we should leave. My wife answered that we should stay and that it was cozy with us being the only ones in the restaurant.

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Only ones in RestaurantPhoto by Frank S/ChicagoFoodKing.

The busboy came up to our table and gave us bread, without even saying a word. The bread was rock solid, old, and hard. I almost broke a tooth on it.

I waited for no exaggeration for almost 15 minutes without a soul coming to our table. I was about to leave. There was absolutely no excuse for this; we were the only ones in the restaurant.

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Stale hard as a rock breadPhoto by Frank S/ChicagoFoodKing.

The waiter finally showed back up and asked if we were ready to order. He gave no comment about the long wait with no service. I told him we will order two Ceaser salads to start. I ordered the Chicken Vesuvio and my wife ordered the Chicken Parmesan.

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Nothing special Chicken ParmesanPhoto by Frank S/ChicagoFoodKing.

I waited another 10 minutes and our salads came out. The salads were good, but they were definitely not typical Ceaser salads. They were not creamy at all and they were made with oil. Luckily, they still were good.

The food came out and the Chicken Vesuvio was boneless and the Chicken Parmesan was nothing to write home about.

I then had the pleasure around this time to have what I assumed was a table of regulars to show up with their party of six, slowly coming in one by one. The hilarious thing was all of a sudden our waiter who was slow and inattentive suddenly sprang to life to take care of these regulars.

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Chicken VesuvioPhoto by Frank S/ChicagoFoodKing.

The conversation consisted of how the busboy was lazy and how he only had one job to fill up customers' water and bring bread. The waiter said how he was not going to tip him for the night because he does not do his job. The waiter spent 5-10 minutes at a time just complaining with them and the customers saying how he should not stand for this. I also want to add that one of the patrons at this table openly coughed without covering their mouth every minute or so. I felt like I was on a prank show. This was so unprofessional.

I waited for what felt like forever for our waiter to stop complaining and come to our table to give us the bill, so we could leave and never come back.

The waiter finally returned and gave us our bill. It was ridiculously overpriced at just under $70 dollars before tip.

I waited about 15 more minutes for the waiter to return and he now told us the system was down and he was unable to run a credit card. He said we could pay cash or write down the credit card number to charge later when it was working again. I told him that we had no cash on us and I was not running around Itasca looking for an ATM.

The waiter said he would write down my credit card number and run it later when it came back online.

This experience was not good on every level. The service was not good. The food was overpriced and subpar and the lack of professionalism was appalling.

I will never be returning to Antonio’s and cannot say I would recommend anyone else to go here.

I give Antonio a rating of 3 out of 10.

© Frank S ChicagoFoodKing, 2022. All Rights Reserved.

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