La Cantina Italian Chophouse

4.4
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1579 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian

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Pre/post Theatre
Patterned after a wine cellar with tucked away booths, this unique restaurant places diners to dine on traditional Italian steak and seafood dishes with a Northern Italian flair. House favorites include pasta staples like the tortellini tre formaggi-a three cheese filled pasta with fresh cherry tomato garlic basil sauce-and the lasagna al forno which combines pasta layers with meat filling, cream sauce and parmesan cheese. House specialities include manicotti with fresh tomato sauce, shrimp casaligna and spaghetti mare Monti. Steaks and chops are hand cut to order and include our famous "Cantina" Rib eye, 16 0unce T-bone and pork chops vesuvio. La Cantina is perfect for theatre dining and famous Chicago steaks. The wine bar is the perfect setting for a romantic date or private deal making. With nods from Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast La Cantina has the largest wine cellar in the Midwest.

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Tue - Thu 7:00PM - 8:00PM
Fri - Sat 7:30PM - 8:30PM

What 1579 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Quiet
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

Food was good. Server was timely/attentive, but not very friendly.

EN
Chicago
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

La cantina is a fantastic restaurant that has great food.

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best food and service in Chicago.

HS
Chicago
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 1

Very mediocre food. A small bowl of gnocchi for $26 is a bit outrageous. Seafood salad had a lot of ingrediants, but was tasteless. Could have used some additional seasoning or taste. The ambiance was sterile. Actuality no ambiance at all. A LONG long corridor of tables in a nondescript narrow space was not attractive. Vivere and Italian Village on the upper floors were far SUPERIOR. If I ever go that venue again I will go upstairs. As far as I'm concerned La Cantina has NOTHING going for it. Not even price.

d
Portland
4 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A most excellent dining experience!

KC
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Located in the cellar area, but cozy and much more elegant than I thought it would be (better than pics online). Traditional favorites like lasagne and chicken parm were a hit with my visiting relatives.

C
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 3

This is a basement (7’ ceilings) that might bother some people. Not us. What was disappointing was that the veal piccata was covered with a glazed thick sauce tasting of fake lemon juice. The veal was served on top of pasta—which no self-respecting Italian chef would do. The Chianti was served in a white wine glass—hello?
The whole set up is confusing in that there are two restaurants at the same address—Italian Village and La Cantina Italian Chophouse.
In short, we were disappointed.

L
Chicago
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Impeccable service. The only reason I said the food was very good is that the Italian Village has two other restaurants at the same location which are supposed to be even better albeit slightly pricier. I am sure the food in those are excellent. We come to Chicago twice a year and make sure we go here each time.

D
New York Area
38 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

My go to Italian when i am in Chicago, good old style food, great wine list & excellent service never disappointed

OT
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Visiting Chicago from Los Angeles and wanted Italian food from Chicago area. It was a decent meal. No frills here.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 3

I chose this Italian Village for its location near the CSO and availability on short notice. The reviews were good but I feel the food is not up to par for a Chicago dining destination.
We were seated on time and the server was professional and attentive. The atmosphere was exactly what I had expected in a basement with some Italian music playing in the background.

The food was a major disappointment except for the salad with house dressing and bread and olive oil. The fried Calamari was over cooked and dry. Our main course was Fruti de Mare (seafood) with Linguine and the sauce tasted like pizza sauce. Disclaimer: my wife is first generation Italian and speaks Italian so her bar is higher then mine when it comes to Italian food but I agree with her 100% this time. I don’t understand how an Italian restaurant that has bred about since 1929 can pump out such mediocre food. Maybe they just cater to our of town tourists like UNO and DuO pizzeria. You can get better Italian at most suburban spots and if your in a world class city like Chicago there are hundreds of other choices. My biggest regret was not getting a chance at one of those other great spots. We only make into the city about once per month and try a new one each time.

OT
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Salads were good. Entrees were bland. Portions were good.

KJ
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

I hadn’t been here since I was a teenager, so it has been more than fifty years! It was terrific. We are so glad we took a chance and tried it. We ate in the Cantina downstairs and want to come back and eat in the more expensive place upstairs. The food was very lovely and our service was impeccable. Great place to go pre-theater or anytime you crave nice Italian food. They have been open since 1927 and are still providing Chicagoans with a wonderful meal!

OT
St. Louis
1 review
Dined on September 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was a great experience and the food was good. The portions are very large as well.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service, waitress went above and beyond. Our meal was very good as well. Great place to go before or after a show at CIBC.

OT
Chicago
15 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 3

Confusing, no sign out front. If you don’t have the address you won’t find it. Low ceiling basement. Cramped space. Service was just ok. My nephew had the pork chops. They were dry, but flavorful and only came with a cup of soup. No vegetable, no pasta. Bread was not the freshest. I asked for lemon to go with my water. They were over-ripe, almost spoiled. I ordered veal piccata. Not the best I’ve ever had. Cannoli was delicious.

P
Richmond
5 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service, great options, lovely ambiance, great time.

R
Chicago
49 reviews
Dined on September 12, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Took my husband out for dinner and a show. We were seated on time for our reservation and staff was aware of the show schedule. Service was relaxed, but attentive. The ambiance is a wine cellar with little adornment. Some music would improve the atmosphere in my opinion as I found it a bit flat.
I had a branzino special that was served topped with a spicy tomato sauté. The fish was meaty and perfectly cooked and served with a fresh vegetable and an excellent minestrone. My husband had the veal scallopini saltimbocca. He found the veal was a bit dry, but liked the preparation nonetheless.
This was our first visit to the cellar restaurant. I like the ambiance upstairs better, but would gladly take table in the cellar if the other restaurant was not available.

B
Washington DC
18 reviews
Dined on September 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was fantastic. Wonderful wine list.

CH
Raleigh
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 5

Great location for theater goers. Great ambiance. Great service, too. Chose items from Theater Menu. Maine courses were disappointing - tilapia too dry & chicken parmigiano pretty tasteless. Desserts were wonderful though.

OT
Columbus
8 reviews
Dined on August 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Bday and anniversary. Great service and food was great! Everyone was helpful and great service!

LC
1 review
Dined on August 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I took a large group to La Cantina for an early dinner after seeing a matinee performance. We could not have been more pleased with the service or the food. Even with some changes to our reservations, everything was handled quickly and with great kindness. The food was melt-in-your-mouth good. La Cantina now will always be a part of my travel to Chicago.

OT
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was my girlfriend's birthday and everything went perfectly! The ambiance, food, and overall experience was more than I could have hoped for

EG
1 review
Dined on August 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a fantastic meal. Our server was amazing and they went out of their way to make it a special birthday dinner for my niece.

OT
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous service, as always!!

BS
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had dinner in LaCantina before seeing Hamilton. The food and service was great. I highly recommend the Baratta.

M
Chicago
88 reviews
Dined on August 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

This consistently excellent Chicago stalwart pleased again. Terrific choice for an early meal before a play or game, or if you want to celebrate something special.

A
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Great night out in Chicago. Wanted to take my wife and daughter to restaurant that wasn't a chain to celebrate our last weekend before school starts. We had a fantastic meal, friendly service by everyone on the staff and really liked the decor of the restaurant as it reminded us of a restaurant in Nice France (I know France is not Italy but that's what it reminded us of). It wasn't a 5 star restaurant but we also didn't pay 5 star prices. Overall great value and we will have a special memory for years to come.

Q
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Wonderful basement ambiance. Felt a little like a goodfellas :) beautiful outdoor sign. Nice and simple wine selection. Our server Petra was perfect. Very polite and to the point and attentive. She came to the table the perfect amount of times. My boyfriend had his staple at almost every restaurant even not Italian restaurants. Fettuccine Alfredo. He claimed best he had ever had!! Even better then my homemade sauce!! He dared venture there so it must be true. PS I had a bite and he was right!! I had the special Risotto. Delicious dish with beautiful light colored mushrooms carrots and asparagus. With tender pulled chicken. We had a house Pinot that was perfect. My only dislike was the bread at the beginning could of been warmer and my salad specifically was heavy on the frisee lettuce. Overall some of the best food, ambiance and service. We repeatedly said out loud how much we enjoyed it!

B
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was excellent. Marina is a wonderful waitress. Thank you.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 2

The “risotto” was just rice mixed with chicken and vegetables- it was not cooked like an actual risotto. The veal picatta was not cooked properly either. The veal was overcooked and looked it was boiled- not sautéed.

LN
Milwaukee
2 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

The medium rare Center Cut Tenderloin was a 10! Hubby should have sent his ribeye back as it was over medium when medium rare is what he ordered. We know they would have re-made it. That being said, he would not order a ribeye again. The wine list is exceptional!! The service is OVER 5 stars. If we make reservations in the future, we would request to not be in the row of booths that is in the well traveled path from the kitchen. The wine cellar and Chicago history feeling was cool.

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Family trip

KG
Austin
22 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food delicious; service delightful. We were so glad to enjoy this place again.

JZ
Indiana
1 review
Dined on August 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Friendly staff start to finish great non-invasive service. We all had a different pasta dish and each were delicious and plentiful The ambience is quiet, a little dark though, since it is downstairs with no windows

MP
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The food was great as usual. Little disappointed with my wife's salad, one of the tomatoes had a core still in it. Other than that everything was delicious.

RA
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our waiter was incredible, she was so sweet and helpful. Best waiter I have had in quite a while.

OT
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a great option before a show. The staff is friendly and helpful. The food is delicious and the portions are huge. We were there for a birthday and the staff brought cake and sang which was a nice touch. Love this place.

s
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We had dinner before seeing a show across the street and they got us in and out in plenty of time of time and the food was nothing amazing but was not bad either.

JA
Nashville
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything I wanted it to be. Close to Hamilton but very authentic Italian Food. The best Burrata I have ever eaten! Great atmosphere.

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