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Jul 9, 2007 07:05 AM

Trattoria 225 review

Very nice when you walk in. Plenty of room, no huddling around the reservation desk. The restaurant is really two halves with some tables and the bar on one side and the open kitchen and tables on the other. Exposed brick, wood floors. duct-work ceiling. Not the loudest place I've been but the potential is there. It helps that the tables aren't very close together. Actually think they could put in a couple more.

The wine list is very nice, not huge but about 40 wines with half of those by the glass which you can get as 3 or 6 oz. pours. A wonderful option. Really good beer options also.

The menu is not extensive. We started with a selection of olives($4) Then bruchetta. Three options there, Had the white bean and red pepper and the mushroom and balsalmic. $2 each. Very good. Beet salad was next(maybe $5). Good but too much lemon. Entree was brought out when I was halfway through the salad....BAD, VERY BAD(otherwise the spacing was good). The one positive was that they brought us the right entree's(more on this later). I had the Barramundi(listed on the menu as the sustainable fish of the month $17).It was good but the portion was pretty small. My wife had the penne pasta( I think $14) which had pepperoni and a tasty fennel sausage. Delicious, couldn't keep my fork away. Sorbetti for desert. Mango for me, lemon with berries for her. Very good. They have a wide selection of pizzas on the menu which must be popular based on the number of them that we saw leave the kitchen. Finished with a shot of lemoncello(house made). Not on the menu, you have to ask. Got coffee also. Total bill was $98 which included 5 glasses of wine.

Staff was enthusiastic and helpful.

The bad news. Get rid of the brown paper on top of the white tablecloths.

8pm and they were out of the Ravioli of the day. At Eight O'clock??? On a Saturday night!!

Lastly, it was like Keystone Kops in there. I know that they have been open only a couple of weeks but I have never seen waiters take that much food to that many wrong tables(including ours). It was downright comical.

As I alluded to earlier, the menu isn't extensive. 4-5 choices for salads, pastas and entrees. For the most part, everything was very good and we will go back. They just need to work on a few issues.

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  1. Hi-

    My wife and I have eaten here twice in two weeks since it has been open, and I have some additional observations/coments.

    We also agreed that the place seemed like they could fit in more tables-- we thought they were waiting to get some of the issues you reported ironed out before expanding.

    re: Noise-- The person @ the front desk told us that they were getting some sound baffles installed this week or next, and that should cut down on some of the noise. We can also report that the place has some climate control issues... When we went last week the temp was likley 75-80 degrees outside, as we sat on the side of the space without the kitchen, and we felt like the space was too cold-- last night granted, the hottest day of the year) and we were sat directly across from the kitchen, and it felt a lil hot-- I bet they figure it out--

    We both liked the fact that the menu is small-- they seem to be trying to perfect a few things, and then expand from there.

    Dont miss out on the pizza-- they cook it in a wood fired oven (that you can see in the exposed kitchen) -They have several topping combo's avaliable on the menu, as well as a list to make your own-- Pastas are really fantastic as well -- (haven't tried the ravioli, as on both visits, they were sold out :( ) I also had that barramundi last night, and thought it was really fantastic-- really light and buttery, not fishy at all.
    We also noticed that the service had a few (positive) changes-- we have not had any issues with getting the wrong food (allthough there was a pacing issue the first time, and our pasta was not served as warm as it should be) but have witnessed this on both visits- ON our first visit, they completley botched the pizza order @ the table across from ours-- They quickly fixed the issue by making both a new pizza for that table, and a second one to take home!! The people @ the table went from really angry, to telling the cheif that they would be back next week for a birthday dinner !

    They seem really comitted to making the place work -- this is clearly evident in how hard the owners worked to get the space up and running-- they want to be there, and they want to work hard to get it right. As my wife said, it is much easier to fix broken service than it is to fix bad food-

    We will also go back-- people seem to be liking the casual european style dining, as they have been packed on both visits--


    1 Reply
    1. re: coopercj

      Figured I might not be the only one interested in some of the more mundane info, like where the restaurant is:

      trattoria 225
      225 harrison street
      oak park, il 60304