The Chicago suburban experience offers up some fine downtown areas and one would be hard-pressed to find a more enjoyable and social atmosphere than downtown LaGrange. It's impossible not to find some good, modest, neighborhood, casual dining offerings.
La Buona Vita certainly fulfills the goal of a good, modest neighborhood dining experience. It's a relatively small establishment with a nice bar and some good food. They offer cozy and romantic tables for couples enjoying a night on the town, but you are made comfortable if you are in a larger party (the table next to ours served a party of ten and they all seemed to be enjoying their night on the town). I chose to try La Buona Vita with a friend. Our meal was excellent starting with crusty, right out of the oven bread. The extra virgin olive oil and cheese gave us a wonderful start to our meal. Get it piping hot and make sure you worked out earlier in the day, since you will want to indulge in several slices of that piping hot bread!
My choice for the evening was cheese ravioli. I went in this direction even though the pull to angel hair with marinara battled for my attention. I'm glad I sided with the ravioli. The marinara sauce was good and a bit sweet (loved the small tomato chunks, as well). They serve up a nice supply of the ravioli and they were delicious. Ricotta was high end.
The salad with salmon was notably quite worthwhile. They cooked the salmon without anyone asking for a non-raw middle. Soups are good as well.
The highlight beyond the food was the music provided (Friday and Saturday nights). The young woman on her guitar was talented and versatile with a superb mix in the music catalog. When she pulled out It Won't Be Long from a 1964 Beatles collection she endeared herself to much of the room. She is worthy of a visit and don't forget the tip.
I will say, if you go on a cold night, you may need to wear a turtleneck, since the venue is small and the restaurant was a bit chilly. Just a warning and that is my opinion. I often feel a bit cold.
La Buona Vita is a solid find in a lovely neighborhood. Good casual dining!
They take reservations and provide free valet parking on Friday and Saturday evenings, even though La Grange provides lots of parking opportunities and they are close to the restaurant.
La Buona Vita
15 W. Calendar
708 352 1621
11am-10pm - Mondays - Sundays
Copyright Chicago and Then Some 2016