Pizza is usually an afterthought for many families. “I don’t feel like making food, let’s order pizza.” or a late night snack after an all-night binge drinking fest. However, for those of us with gluten allergies, it’s one of those things you have to plan for – either you buy some gluten free pizza dough from the local Whole Foods and hope it's decent, or you drag yourself all the way out to a pizzeria that has products to suit your dietary restrictions.
On Sunday night, we went to Da Luciano’s Italian eatery. I know what you’re thinking – WHAT? How are you going to eat Italian food when everything is made of wheat? Good thing for me, the Libreri Family who own the little eatery have four (of their six) children with Celiac’s. Due to the restaurant’s unique food offering, they have been featured on TV such as ABC News and in magazines such as Living Without (http://www.livingwithout.com/).
When I walked in to the small storefront restaurant, I saw tons of articles hanging on the wall about their gluten-free offerings. It’s also hard to notice the shelves of gluten-free pasta that you can buy for use in your home.
I ordered the garlic bread ($3.50 for 2 pcs) and a personal pizza with sausage and pepperoni ($10). The garlic bread was just OK. You can still taste the grittiness of rice flour, but it did have the feel of an English muffin. It was a nice starter to much on while Ernie had traditional Italian bread. The 7” round pizza was better than the garlic bread. The crust was flaky and crunchy and definitely satisfied my pizza craving.
I’d say that I still prefer Aurelio’s pizza to Da Luciano. Aurelio’s sauce is a bit spicier and the cheese is nicer on the palette which makes the overall pizza experience much more flavorful. Plus, my co-worker/friend’s parents own the closest Aurelio’s.
What will keep me going back to Da Luciano’s is their extremely wide variety of gluten-free dishes. From Tiramisu (yeah!!) to all kinds of pasta dishes to chicken/fish/veal, there’s a lot more to try from this mom and pop restaurant. Plus, you can take home any of their gluten-free products dried or frozen.
· Wide Variety of Italian yummy dishes.
· Go early, they get busy and there aren’t many tables.
· Park across the street or on the side of the building, but not in the lot for the new strip mall.
· Great value – Seafood, Pasta, Chicken are all less than $15. Veal dishes are $2 bucks more.
· Save room for dessert! Cannoli, Tiramisu, Spumoni, Lemon Ice, Cupcakes.. yum!
· Take home some home made Italian!
Gluten Free Menu: http://www.dalucianos.com/gluten-free-menu.cfm
8343 W. Grand Ave
River Grove, IL 60171