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Enjoy a Hearty Italian Meal at Gatto’s

By published May 13, 2024


If you’re looking for a spot in the Chicago Southland with authentic, freshly-made Italian specialties, you’ll want to make your way to Gatto’s Italian Restaurant & Bar in New Lenox. The place has a casual, friendly vibe that definitely makes you feel at home. Their motto is: “Enter as friends, leave as family.”

Two brothers, Chuck and Frank Gatto, who had experience in the restaurant industry working on Taylor Street in Chicago’s Little Italy neighborhood decided to open their own restaurant more than two decades ago and it has since grown to three locations.

Meals start out with warm bread, olive oil and parmesan cheese. I could almost make a meal just out of that and a nice glass of wine, but there’s way too many delicious items on the menu to stop there.

In true Italian fashion portions are large, sauces are homemade, pastas are made fresh daily and cooked to order and ingredients are fresh. The fried calamari is one of the appetizers they are known for. Also popular is the bruschetta, which has fresh mozzarella blended in with the tomatoes.

The Gatto’s Garbage Salad is a must try, packed with romaine lettuce, Krakus ham, Genoa salami, fontanelli and bleu cheese, cucumber, tomato, black olives, onions, pepperocini and hearts of palm with their house vinaigrette.

The menu is loaded with scrumptious pastas dishes, steaks and chops, seafood, chicken and veal. The signature Chicken Milano is spectacular – a boneless, breaded chicken breast tossed in cream sauce and fresh spinach with roasted red peppers and mushrooms over angel hair pasta. I’m also a huge fan of Chicken Picatta and Chicken Limone and this is one of my favorite places to enjoy those dishes.

Don’t leave with out trying one of the traditional Italian desserts – the cannoli, gelato and tiramisu are all top notch. For more information, go to gattosrestaurant.com. Gatto’s Italian Restaurant & Bar is located at 1938 E. Lincoln Highway in New Lenox.

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