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“Pretentious and deceiving”

Anna Maria Pasteria
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Ranked #1,106 of 9,764 Restaurants in Chicago
Price range: US$21 - US$50
Cuisines: Italian
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Restaurant details
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: W. Montrose Ave
Description: A mix of modern and traditional Italian cuisine, our cozy ristorante has long been a local favorite. Sisters Anna and Maria, originally from the Basilicata region of southern Italy, first opened the doors of Anna Maria Pasteria in 1989. Beginning at age seven, Anna fell in love with cooking, creating her first plate of Pasta e Fagioli, a simple peasant dish which is now an Italian specialty. Enamored with cuisine and hospitality, Maria followed the family tradition and put her heart into making the best and most heavenly Tiramisu. After nearly two decades, Anna and Maria continue to dedicate themselves to the finest home-made Italian cuisine and service. Each entree is prepared to order with only the finest and freshest ingredients.
Reviewed 5 July 2008

A romantic neighborhood place, one said? On a corner shared with a cemetery, drugstore, and strip mall. Another said reasonable prices? Not for a neighborhood joint with what you get and don't get. A store front with 8-9 tables and a mini bar with unknown wines and no trained bartender. A large menu of many selections, which you quickly see are variations on three main entres with just different sauces and herbs.

But the worst, for which they should be closed: I ordered one of their several "veal" dishes. (I know,, veal is controversial to some.) After an ala carte "house salad" not worthy of a roadside diner. The small pieces of meat in an over-herbed clear sauce somehow didn't seem right. The meat was off color and not tender at all. The side of pasta tough as the meat, with a canned red sauce. But I ate and paid.

By coincidence, on one of the cooking boards a few days later, was an article on restaurant common substitutions. It seems that some places thin slice pork and call it veal. That explained it! The color, texture, and toughness. Pure attempted deception.

As an experiment, later at home I cooked some pounded-thin pork with their style of sauce and herbs. Much more tender.

If their's was not pork, but real veal, it was a very cheap cut and poorly prepared.

There are many nice neighborhood places. This is not one of them.

Thank young_curmudg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (33)
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27 - 31 of 33 reviews

A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
Reviewed 20 April 2008

this is a grows on you place. the more you eat it, the more you love it. homecooking.

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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
Reviewed 12 December 2007

Amazing, tiny Italian place. Went for dinner and ended up talking to the owner who gave us his personal wine pairings for our food. And the food was amazing.

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This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 15 November 2007

On a recent weekend trip to Chicago we were looking for a place for dinner on Saturday night. Our hotel was just north of Andersonville so we decided to drive south down Clark Street to explore the area and find a place to eat. As we waited at a red light at Montrose and Clark, my husband glanced over and noticed Anna Maria's. Through the window he could see white tablecloths and a white shirted waiter. We easily found a place to park on the street about 1/2 block away.

When we entered the restaurant we received a warm greeting. We reviewed the menu, liked what we saw and were promptly seated. The restaurant was cozy and romantic and most tables were filled. Despite how busy they were, our waiter provided very good service and we did not have a very long wait for our food. My husband had a chicken dish with pasta, for me a fettucini primavara that was nice and creamy. Both our portions were generous. In addition they served crusty Italian bread.

We were gracious thanked for our business as we left and encouraged to return soon. Good food and service, cozy atmosphere, generous portions and very reasonable prices. We would definitely return to Anna Maria's and would recommend it.

Thank Changitah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 November 2007

Skip this place unless you like paying a lot for mushy flavorless pasta. Two meatballs and mushy pasta for 13 dollars. There are two or three other places within minutes of here that are better. Pasta and sauce in a can or Olive Garden is even better.

Thank MulliMulli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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