About Gaetano's & Ristorantino Mediterraneo
Chef Gaetano Di Benedetto is a native of the lush coastal town of Bagheria, located near Palermo, Sicily. He began as a kitchen apprentice in Palermo in 1978 and is a graduate of the prominent IPAS professional culinary school in Italy. His cooking career spans three decades, maintaining the title of Executive Chef since 1989 at restaurants throughout Italy, as well as France, England and the US.
While still in Sicily, Gaetano served as Chef at the oppulent Villa Paino, where he was accorded the honor of preparing state dinners for the Presidents of Italy, Francesco Cossiga, and Oscar Luigi Scalfaro. After leaving Sicily, Gaetano worked in such culinary capitals as London, Paris and Milan.
Chef Gaetano is a recent recipient of "Ospitalita Italiana" from the Italian Gov. This award signifies Gaetano's as an authentic Italian restaurant, 1 of 600 in the entire world! You will only find fresh, natural and homemade dishes at Gae
Forest Park, IL 60130
Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday & Saturday: 4:30pm - 10:30pm, Closed Sunday
$31 to $50
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Call us for Details (708) 366-4010
Banquet, Beer, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Special Events & Promotions:
See our website for Information, http://www.gaetanosforestpark.com
Gaetano's & Ristorantino Mediterraneo Ratings and Reviews
The reviews for this restaurant were great so we gave it a try. We would not return. I made the reservation through open table and we got the worst table. The back room. Avoid the back room. It's damp and errr just say you'll wait for a table up front. The Service was poor. Our waiter was not friendly, not observant, not helpful and slow. He realized that he was not serving well and blamed the other staff for this- which is always a bad sign in the service industry. The starters were good, we had 2 bacon dishes (server said "you sure you want all that bacon"). The wine was good. The main dishes were not as good. Gnocchi was not firm, actually mushy. The cream sauce was atypical. Shrimp meal - they left the tail shells on. Which I despise. I get it if it was a cocktail shrimp and I needed a handle for dipping, but when it is mixed into a pasta dish - ugh- why must I dig it out and take off the shell- rack it up to a lazy chef. Dessert was average at best. Flourless chocolate cake was boring, Tiramisu was not flavorful. Gelato not bad, but the cost to have 2 good bacon dishes and ice-cream-- too expensive. Took 30 min (not kidding) to get the check (server blamed IT) Lots of great places to eat around Oak Park- this is not one of them. Skip it.
We've been to Gaetano's several times and always really enjoyed the experience. Our most recent visit was a little disappointing though. We ordered the tasting menu with the wine pairing after our waiter assured us that the vegetarian in our group wouldn't miss out on any of the courses. Two of the courses he got though were just roasted vegetables which accompanied the meat and fish courses for the non-vegetarians. It's the first time I felt that I was overcharged for what I got.
This was a Friday night and the restaurant was packed (yes, we had a reservation). Some bar seats were available. Still the service was prompt and impeccable. The carpaccio appetizer was amazing. The ravioli porchetta and the mist di pesce were both excellent.
This place used to be one of our favorite places to go, but with the most recent experience, I will not be back. We were seated in their back room. To get to the room we had to go through a long hallway which was dirty and how stuff everywhere. It was for sure an eyesore. Also there were staff in the kitchen arguing over who was getting what tables. All of this was a huge turn off.
Gaetano's never disappoints. The food and service are always outstanding. Typically the noise level is pretty quiet, but we had a table of six next to ours that were quite loud. That is the exception and not the rule. Wonderful option for any night, but especially special occasions.
Where to begin? We’ve been dining with Chef Gaetano and his team since his days at La Piazza. He never fails to please. From the warm, inviting greeting and seating to the superb service by Bela, the food was the icing on the proverbial cake. The calamari and asparagus appetizer is simply to die for! Salad so fresh and delectable with hearts of palm. Tagliatelle with lobster and scallops...hello I’ve been to heaven! Short ribs and saffron risotto...best...ever...anywhere...melt in your mouth! Get the bottle of Barolo and have some liquid velvet to accompany your perfect meal. The tortellini with ricotta and truffle oil...I completely understand why it’s Gaetano’s favorite. No other restaurant in the Western Burbs is even in the same league as Gaetano’s. Trust me, I lived in Wicker Park/Bucktown/Ukie Village from ‘92-‘04...if you want the finest of the best city dining without the snobbery, attitude and having to park 6 blocks away, then come to Gaetano’s. I guarantee you’ll return, again and again. A special shout out to Bela for his conscientious, courteous and spectacular service. Bravo!!
The food is always innovative, exciting and delicious. A neighborhood gem. It's a small restaurant, so everything is fresh and made to order. The only problem in our recent experience was the service. It was unnaturally slow, particularly since we were some of the first to arrive. We were told the kitchen was trying to "catch up," but the restaurant is always filled, so very surprised they did not have this down. I was also disappointed in that this was a special birthday celebration, listed on res, but no acknowledgement made. Since prices make Gaetano's a "special treat," I was really hoping for that personal touch. We're still likely to go for the next BIG (intimate) celebration. Hoping for better service, but know the good will still be great.
We opted to have Gaetano’s Tapas tasting. Loved every bite and enjoyed savoring the various taste presented that although were quite different complimented each other so well. Prepare yourself it is plenty of food and this was the Tapas tasting. Simply delicious.
The quality at Gaetano's is superb. Both my friend and I were on restricted diets (NO gluten) and have food allergies. Gaetano was there and he had the kitchen create a meal that was not only fabulous, but within ALL our restrictions. This place is a local gem and worth every penny. My absolute go to favorite place. And the wines are outstanding, too!
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