Subway: Blue to Damen(773) 770-0184 miafrancesca.com41.909919 -87.677335 1576 N Milwaukee Ave (at Damen Ave) Wicker Park, Chicago
Brunch (Sat, Sun), dinnerAverage small plate: $8
Though it closed down recently for a renovation of both the space and the menu, Francesca’s Forno looks awfully familiar. While the menu exhibits an adventurous spirit here and there (corkscrews of pasta tossed with sliced octopus), things are mostly played safe. And most of the time (exception: the pasty gnudi), Francesca’s is good at safe. Which is why getting the roasted chicken with big, juicy roasted peaches, or the hyperseasoned pork steak with corn-studded polenta, or the semaforo pizza topped with peppers, rapini and olives, is a good idea. Can you spread it on bread? Order it. Is it a dessert? Avoid it. In short: This is like any other Francesca’s spot. Stick to the program, don’t stray, and you’ll be happy.