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Italy arrives in Decatur…

This past Monday, a restaurant in Decatur quietly opened it’s doors, seeming to rely most heavily on the best form of advertising around – word of mouth.  So here goes my mouth (err…typing?).

1423 E. Mound Rd. (Wood-Mound Plaza, next to Subway)
Decatur, IL 62526

Seriously.  I haven’t heard any radio, seen any paper ads (but we don’t get the paper), or any TV or Facebook buzz about them.  A hand-drawn marker sign posted by the road announced they were open, and so last night we decided to give it a try.

The sign outside told us it was a place to get some brick-oven pizza.  “IL FORNO” means “the oven” in Italian, and sure enough we were greeted by a giant brick oven as we walked in.  We expected a “hole in the wall” bar atmosphere that served pizza based on the outside, but were pleasantly surprised as we walked in.  This place would be a great choice for both a family pizza night in t-shirt/shorts, but with candle-lit tables and Tuscan decor – it’s a great date-night option as well.

The range continues with the menu!  We were drawn in by their gluten-free choices, but distracted by the TONS of other options as well.  Appetizers even more creative than the garden where I guess they grow the olives.  Plenty of salad options that could be entire meals, chicken dishes, seafoods, sandwiches/paninis, steaks, many veal dishes, pastas/sauces/meats, a whole page of gourmet pizzas, and even a couple “dessert pizza” options.

My wife ordered the “Romano Chicken”, which was a chicken breast served on a bed of three-cheese mashed potatoes, covered in a home-made Romano cheese sauce, and topped with several pieces of tender asparagus.  I went with a “Chicken (cant remember this word) Panini”…and holy cow it was awesome.  It was a chicken breast topped with several slices of prosciutto, served on a fresh ciabatta roll spread with garlic pesto sauce.  Mine also came with mashed potatoes that tasted ah. maze. ing.

I stopped eating after the first half of my sandwich. Usually this is because I’m so full, I don’t want to become stuffed.  As full as I was, the reason I stopped was to that I could extend my sandwich experience over another day.  Heated up for lunch today was equally as awesome.

Our bill was about $25, because once in a while we eat like rich people.  The wait staff are very new, which means new jobs for Decatur – always a good thing.  The little old Italian couple and what I assume is their son in the kitchen – seem to have captured something awesome here.  I encourage you to check it out, and support the local economy while you do it.  You’ll be very glad you did!!!



Husband, Father, Pastor, Missionary, Writer, Poet, Friend, reader, coffee enthusiast, hockey Wing-Nut, musical participator, etc...

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