Francesca's Forno
Francesca's Forno

Francesca's Forno

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.miafrancesca.com/
  • Phone: 7737700184x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Monday – Wednesday: 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
    Thursday & Friday: 11:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
    Saturday: 3:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.
    Sunday: 3:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.

    Brunch:
    Saturday & Sunday: 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean
  • Executive Chef: Dan Weiland
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Special Events: Live music Thursday nights!

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Damen/Milwaukee/North
  • Public Transit: Located just steps from the Blue Line at the Damen Avenue Stop
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Street parking
A word from Francesca's Forno
A member of The Francesca's Restaurant Group, Francesca's Forno is proud to welcome new Executive Chef Dan Weiland to the team! Not your typical corner restaurant, the menu at Francesca's Forno changes daily. Come explore the creatively scrumptious adventures Chef Weiland will take you on with his delicious daily whims.

About The Francesca’s Restaurant Group: Founded in 1992 by Restaurateur Scott Harris, Francesca’s Restaurant Group has grown from a small, welcoming Italian restaurant on Chicago’s North Clark Street to a restaurant group of three concepts across 33 locations and four states. Based in Chicago, Francesca’s Restaurant Group currently owns and operates 23 Francesca’s Restaurants, five Davanti Enoteca, and five Glazed and Infused locations.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos
Francesca's Forno reviews from OpenTable diners
26 reviews since June 26, 2014
Overall Rating3.8
  • Food3.7
    Service4
  • Ambiance3.9
    Noise LevelEnergetic
75% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (13)good for groups (7)fit for foodies (6)hot spot (5)great for brunch (5)scenic view (4)romantic (4)special occasion (4)notable wine list (3)great for lunch (2)late-night find (2)vibrant bar scene (1)great for outdoor dining (1)Show More
  • Great Local Go To
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Great food but not as hardy as the other Francesca restaurants. Fun ambiance but unfortunately very loud so can be difficult to have real conversations.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Eh
    rjonwardVIP
    Dined on 9/5/2014
    Good service bad food ......................................................
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A bit of a dud
    312suz
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    This place is supposed to be a more authentic Italian dining experience than the other Francesca spots. We checked out the menu on the website prior to booking and it looked just right...ample offerings and courses (Italian style...primi, pasta, etc...). When we got there the menu was one page with about 12 offerings. We asked and were told they are changing their concept...or something. We all found something to order and it was overall sub par. The red wine was off temp (served way too warm), the pasta dishes were just OK, ditto the pizza, and the burger was just plain bad. Don't bother, there are way too many great (and truly authentic) Italian places in this city.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Menu
    Mercutus
    Dined on 8/3/2014
    They had a wonderful and innovative menu for dinner, with a knowledgable staff who really wanted us to enjoy their place. This wouldn't be my first choice for a quiet romantic evening but it would be for a night out with friends. It's full of energy, with a lively crowd of locals and hipsters.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Different chef, mediocre food
    CasDinerVIP
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    Francesca's Forno was a weekly go to place for our dinner meetings because we loved the food, the service and the bustling location. Unfortunately, the chef has changed, and we were told he is from The Purple Pig. The food which was once the star is now only mediocre at best. There are now small plate offerings, so creative and unique, right? The entrees were overly salted and greasy, and the fabulous bread is gone, replaced by a mundane offering. The service also used to be great when we had Martha, who was really wonderful. At our most recent visit, which will most likely be our last, we had Ryan, who was clearly harried and not up to par. Sad to say, this is not the Francesca's we knew and loved for so many years. RIP.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Brunch
    JPChicago
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Great brunch spot with varied menu & signature cocktails. Try the doughnut trio!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great neighborhood restaurant!
    randbdiners
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    I made a reservation the night before thinking we'd have 6 in our party. We actually had an extra person show up, and they were very accommodating. In addition, our waiter was extremely patient with our group through many demands. He also provided great appetizer recommendations. Food was fabulous and drinks were strong!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Loved it
    Jpmac77
    Dined on 7/16/2014
    We had a great time here. Sat by the open window on a perfect night. Had the salmon ...it was delicious. The waitstaff was friendly and attentive. Really convenient location Just Steps from a blue line station.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • tasty but loud
    PointShopper
    Dined on 7/4/2014
    Menu choice variety good, food preparation and flavors swell, bar atmosphere but plates restaurant quality. Like the other diners on the block, very lively young and fun crowd, so not a place for the quiet shy types. Italian sauce great blend of taste, bruschetta refreshing. Prices moderate and the staff friendly and attentive. Enjoy this diner and the surrounding area. Open windows into the outdoor sidewalk, a nice summer touch.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Not so Hot This Time
    Havanai
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    I've been to Francesca's Forno for lunch before and enjoyed it. We walked in and were greeted with head-banging, big hair, metal music, playing loud. I asked the waiter to turn it down and to his credit, he did without complaint. But the music was totally inappropriate for lunch in this restaurant. I ordered the arugula strawberry salad, and asked to hold the onions, and I chose the add-chicken option. The onions were held, but no chicken. So I had to wait for my chicken, while my companion finished half of her lunch. And the salad was absolutely tiny, more like a side salad with a dinner, than a lunch-entree size. In short, I touted this restaurant to my out-of-town friend, and this trip it was a pretty thorough disappointment.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 16 ratings-only reviews submitted since June 26, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.1
    • Food3.9
    • Ambiance4.1
    • Service4.1
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The following 332 reviews are from the Francesca's Forno reviews archive.
  • Great Italian food
    CasDinerVIP
    Dined on 6/10/2014
    This was our second visit to Francesca's Forno for dinner. From the maitre'd to the waitstaff, the service was consistently excellent. The food is also always delicious. We had the risotto special, salmon, chicken and seafood pasta and everyone was very pleased. The homemade gelato for desert was a creamy delight. The food and wine are very reasonably priced for the quality, with drinks and desert about $40/ person. In this town where consistency is lacking in so many restsurants, Forno is a standout. We will definitely be back.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A gem of a place
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 6/2/2014
    I have been here about 5 times. Always something real cool about the menu. Always a vibe about the place. The food is always better then I expect.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • patidine1
    Dined on 5/15/2014
    had a wonderful time, dinner was very good and the service was excellent !
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • so noisy!
    laurgr
    Dined on 5/11/2014
    Went for an early Mother's Day dinner. Got seated right next to the kitchen and it was ridiculously loud. Cooks throwing pans into metal bins on the floor about 10 feet from our table. They brought out the kid's dinners and then 15 min later, the kids were done and our food hadn't arrived yet. So we asked to take our food to go and we ate it at home. The pastas are wonderful, we got the orrechiete and the rigatoni with eggplant. I got the salmon and it was good but pretty boring.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Can't Wait to go Back!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/3/2014
    This was a great place to eat! Everyone was friendly and helpful. The food was amazing! I was there to celebrate getting a new job with three other people, we had a rose which was yummy. Normally im not a fan of beets but we had gotten their beet starter, and lets just say my mind has changed! Also the chefs board with meats and cheeses! We all got our own pizzas.... mmmm I love these types of pizzas, I think Sicilian style. Just absolutly fantastic all around. It was clean and connected to glazed and infused which you would know unless you went to the bathroom where I had to stop my self from stealing a rack of doughnuts! I cant wait to go back, I've been a raving fan of this place ever since.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always solid
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 4/27/2014
    We go here a couple times a month. Ask for John to be your server. He does a great job at serving good food.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Italian
    CasDinerVIP
    Dined on 4/22/2014
    This spot is another very well done Francesca's. It fits the neighborhood with a younger vibe. The food is excellent in keeping with the consistently of the Grancesca's name. We had the grilled chicken and salmon with lentils, and both were cooked perfectly and very flavorful. The housemade gelato is superb. I would recommend this for groups, families and couples, all of which were represented the evening we were there.
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Good for Groups, Romantic, special occasion, Neighborhood Gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great experience
    FrankRicard
    Dined on 4/18/2014
    We had an 8:15 reservation, and were seated right on time. Staff was very friendly and courteous. Menu was good, and different than we'd seen at other Francesca's restaurants. Food wa delivered quickly. We'll definitely return here next time we're in Wicker Park.
    Special Features:
    Romantic, special occasion, Late-Night Find, Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot, Notable Wine List
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent!
    Amicus
    Dined on 4/18/2014
    Best bruschetta I've ever had in my life!!! The waiter was spot on and recommended the perfect wines. Then we had the fettuccine and the lobster stuffed ravioli. Both were incredible. Total came out to about $100.00. Definitely worth it!
    Special Features:
    Kid-Friendly, Fit For Foodies, Good for Groups, Great for Outdoor Dining, Romantic, special occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot, Notable Wine List
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • patidine1
    Dined on 4/17/2014
    great food . service and jazz !!! will come back again soon, had a great time !!!
    Special Features:
    Scenic View, Neighborhood Gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Brunch at Francesca's
    TnTXXXVIP
    Dined on 4/13/2014
    I've been to many of the different Francesca restaurants for dinner, but this was the first time for breakfast. We arrived early before the restaurant opened. I had my 90 year old mother with me and asked if they would allow us in to sit until they were opened. They seated us immediately and got us some coffee! The food items were wonderful, too. Mom had oatmeal pancakes. My husband had bacon and eggs. I had the Eggs Sardou. The potatoes are outstanding. and we got some pastries to take home!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, vibrant bar scene, great for outdoor dining, great for brunch, notable wine list, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disinterested service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 4/5/2014
    Our server could barely say hello and the experience was really lackluster. Not a great data place, ok for a family, but not even great for that. Go to Francesca's on Taylor -hands down a better experience and way better food.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent pub-type dining
    Alces
    Dined on 4/4/2014
    We were four and we all had very good results with our varied menu choices. The food was delicious, the service friendly and efficient, the prices reasonable, helping size not overly large. The sound level was fairly high, which was our only minor quibble. We would recommend the restaurant.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Friendly Francesca Forno
    Slorman
    Dined on 3/29/2014
    Made same-day reservations for 830p on a saturday night. We only had to wait 10-15 minutes to be seated but the host gave us two free appetizers for our patience. Totally not necessary, but super nice! Food was good. Similar to all the Francesca's and other Italian restaurants that were spawned 20 years ago from the same owners/chefs. With a view of the 6-way intersection at North, Milwaukee and Damen it makes from good people watching too!
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Overall consistently good
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 3/21/2014
    Food is fun and good, atmosphere is good, service is good - it's a great neighborhood establishment as a staple and worth it for people to come from out of town. The space is in a vibrant area so great people watching both inside and outside. A bit noisy so if you're not in the mood for lots of noise, not for you.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Experience
    ChicagoDave
    Dined on 3/16/2014
    Had a great experience checking out their brunch. Our server was very attentive and the food was very good. The fried papas were a bit cold but otherwise everyone really enjoyed their selections.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Love this restaurant!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 3/14/2014
    Always, one of my favorites! Perfect spot for a dinner with friends!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Be prepared to wait
    Luv2dine
    Dined on 2/15/2014
    The good and ambience are outstanding; however we had a reservation for 8 and were not seated until 8:40.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great brunch and dinner
    chigirl
    Dined on 2/15/2014
    Awesome brunch, we've been several times. I just tried dinner there and that was awesome too! Burrata salad, diavola pizza, and seasonal risotto were all delicious. The blueberry pancakes are delicious. We always get them for the table to share so everyone can have savory and a bit of sweet.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Lovely spot for Valentine's Day
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    We had a great experience here on Valentine 'a Day! Great ambiance, fantastic and attentive service, and delicious food. We'll definitely be back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great experience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 2/8/2014
    This place is an overlooked gem. Menu is great. Easy to get a reservation on a weekend. We enjoyed everything we ordered. What's not to like?
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • very good food, fun people
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 2/1/2014
    very good food, fun people watching with large glass windows looking out over north/division/ milwaukee
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Enjoyed the delicious "restaurant
    bgal
    Dined on 2/1/2014
    Enjoyed the delicious "restaurant week" menu. Amazing ratatouille as an appetizer and delicious filet for the main entree. Love the view as well
    Special Features:
    good for groups, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Take your date here!
    TimS
    Dined on 1/22/2014
    I chose Forno because it was Date #2 with a guy I really liked & didn't want to shout over everyone, or feel like we were trapped in a dark corner. Forno worked out perfectly. I love the ambiance of busy Wicker Park strolling past the windows, especially in winter months when the entire restaurant is filled with a welcoming orange glow, due in part to the beautiful lamps overhead. Dinner was roasted Brussels Sprouts and the Tartufotto pizza. Both excellent, along with the bottle of Cannonball merlot. Service was ever present but never pushy. No one seemed to mind as we stayed at our table for a few hours. And you guys, WE'RE STILL DATING. I think we know the reason: Forno.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, vibrant bar scene, great for brunch, romantic, scenic view, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not so great
    brianr
    Dined on 1/19/2014
    We normally would get there early for brunch to have the trio of Glazed and Infused doughnuts but this Sunday we got there late. The Doughnuts were gone and the food was just okay. The service was also off. Normally it is good but this time she was very aloof and unconcerned with our needs. The coffee was cold even when she got me a new cup. We received our food and was about 3/4 of the way through it (10-15 min of eating) before she came over to ask how everything was. The best part is that she walked by us several times and said nothing. The only reason to go here for brunch is the trio of glazed and infused doughnuts. Next time I'll probably get those to go, grab a Starbucks and enjoy them both at home.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food and service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013VIP
    Dined on 1/16/2014
    I had a great experience very nice place the inside is very warm and inviting. The way the kitchen setup is along the wall is very cool as you can see the cooks working. My server Claire recommended me to a great Original Sin hard cider that was amazing, she suggested some of her favorite dishes which I loved as well. I will definitely be back although I wish they had brunch weekdays because it looks great on the weekend menu.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, vibrant bar scene, great for brunch, notable wine list, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Pleasant surprise
    TanqGibsVIP
    Dined on 1/9/2014
    I thought we were going to just another Italian restaurant for dinner. We had calamari for appetizers, it was good but the dipping sauce was too hot for our taste. Though it was mentioned in the menu, calamari fritti with tomato chili or something like that, it was hot. We had to asked for a basic marinara sauce instead. I mix their chili sauce with marinara sauce...... It was perfect. My spouse orderEd Linguini +wild mushrooms +mascarpone +truffle oil +brandy veal sauce, and I had the Pappardelle +pork ragu +parmesan +ricotta. It was Delicious! The pork ragu was very good! I think they make their own pasta. Will definitely go back. The service was good as well. very attentive and always a smile on their face. truly made our evening!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Perfect for us!
    ljbp
    Dined on 1/4/2014
    We had tickets to a show (Dutchman) at the theater across the street. And we had a tight timeline between dinner and the show. So Francesca's Forno was perfect for our situation... But the wine recommended by our server was perfect, the food was excellent and the atmosphere was lively but still romantic! So it was perfect for us!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, hot spot, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A reliable choice
    AGAG
    Dined on 1/3/2014
    Francesca's Forno is typically a reliable, neighborhood dining experience. This time was a bit sub-par, but definitley would return.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • lively brunch
    Jamba
    Dined on 1/1/2014
    Had1:30 brunch reservation for 2 for New Year's Day, were 15 min late and seated immediately. Crowed and loud music but fit our bill since we had stayed in night before. Had omelets, boyfriend liked his - mine was a tad undercooked. House hash browns were tasty. We drifted to bar afterwards and enjoyed jalapeno infused margaritas.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.