The Number One Cuisine? Italian!

I could eat Italian food almost every night. Pizza, pasta, just pile it all on! Since Paul’s night class was canceled tonight, we decided to finally use the Groupon I bought a while back for Affresco Pizzeria. It’s about 10 minutes from Paul’s house, so it was the perfect choice. Of course, I forgot my camera. Figures, right?

The restaurant itself was really cute. It kind of reminded me of the restaurant Bella and Edward go to in Twilight, but fancier. There were twinkling lights everywhere, and it was perfect for a first date.

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Paul and I are the quickest people when it comes to eating out. We don’t ever get anything but water to drink. Drinking alcohol + eating food = not a good combination for either of us. We always stick to an appetizer, and then we each get two completely different entrees. That way, we can pick off each other’s plates a bit.

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One of the coolest things about this place was that instead of bread and butter, they served the bread with a Greek cheese called kefalotiri, or at least that’s what it tasted like. The little cheese curds were amazing with the bread slices, and a bit of olive oil.

We had the fried calamari for our appetizer, and it was delicious! They were miniature, and easy to gobble up. The only bad thing was that the cocktail sauce seemed more like marinara. Boo! I love my cocktail sauce.

For dinner, I got the gnocchi stuffed with gorgonzola and spinach. It was covered in a cream sauce, and though the gnocchi itself was really yummy, there was too much cream. Still, I’d definitely recommend this dish, and I’ll be having it for dinner tomorrow. I’d have it for lunch but any time I eat pasta at work, I get really sleepy.

Paul got a chicken dish that came with sun-dried tomatoes, artichokes and some linguine pasta and cherry tomatoes. His chicken was tender and juicy. The artichokes were the perfect mix of crunchy and tender, and the sun-dried tomatoes were really good. Paul and I both really enjoyed ourselves at the restaurant, though the waiter probably couldn’t tell because we were in and out.

We never get dessert, and since we had $50 to spend, we didn’t want to overdo it. Our bill came to $49.76! We still had to pay tax and leave our waiter a tip, so we ended up spending about $15.

I can’t wait to come back to this place to try the pizza! I’d give this restaurant 4.5/5 stars. The calamari was delicious, my pasta did not disappoint and Paul loved his meal. Plus, my water glass wasn’t ever empty. If you’re in the Chicagoland area, check this place out!

Lunch

I finally got olives back into my lunch. Turns out my mom had a jar stashed in the cupboard, and I made sure to get my hands on it.

I’ve got tons of spinach and other greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, zucchini, feta…and green olives. The saltiness of the olives makes this salad 10 times more amazing, as does the balsamic vinaigrette.

Almost a heart PB&J

Raspberry preserves on the left and creamy peanut butter on the right. It’s a match made in heaven.

Gotta get the bloobs in!

Last but not least I had a 100-calorie pack of cheese curds. So good, but definitely not enough. I probably should have brought some crackers with me.

Also, I’ve been super tired in the mornings lately, so I haven’t gotten a chance to make oats on a weekday yet. Things are just so hectic in the a.m. and I feel like oats deserve a much more calm stomach. Maybe on Friday?

In the meantime, I’m sticking to my normal yogurt, honey and toast or a gigantic bowl of cereal. My new obsession is Wheat Chex!

What’s your favorite thing to order at Italian restaurants? Do you like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? Do you have any cool variations on this common lunch?

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49 Responses to The Number One Cuisine? Italian!

  1. Maryann says:

    Sounds like a fun date night! Nick and I always order dishes and try a bite of each others as well. I dont eat out a lot so I hardly ever go to Italian, but when i do I definitely order the pasta! Definitely love PB and Js…Lately I have been eating scoops of each right of the the jars though! Great midday snack 🙂

  2. Yum–that restaurant sounds delicious! So perfect that you spent almost exactly $50! 🙂

    I love olives–I need to start adding them to my salads more often!!

  3. I actualy haven’t had pb and jelly sandwiches in years… but pb is delicious and I”m sure I’d still love them! Bananas and PB are a good combo as well 🙂

    And i used to be obsesssssed with chex!
    And my favorite part about eating at italian restaurants is the bread bowl… Pretty much my entire meal right there 😉

  4. Meri says:

    I love the heart PB and J!
    I like ordering different entrees/ sampling things too 🙂 Then you get to try more than one thing!

  5. I LOVE PB + J! 😀 But at Italian restaurants I think my favorite thing to get is usually pizza. 🙂

  6. Katy says:

    I love the Cinnamon Chex! Plus it’s Gluten-Free! Shane and i went GF last year for a few months, and those things saved my life!! But this was before I really cooked, so I loved anything easy!

    That sounds like a wonderful date! I can’t wait to go on dates again… Haha. I’m glad you had a wonderful time! Those blueberries look yum. I love berries.

  7. Ellie says:

    Peanut butter sandwiches are one of my fave! Anything with nut butter actually 😛 And I always like to try new things, so I can’t say I order just one dish…But I do seem to fall under “Linguines” or “raviolis” or “gnocchis”. When I don’t want something heavy, EGGPLANT PARMAGIAN!

  8. Ellie says:

    Btw! You’re not related to Angie (fitnessapple), are you? I noticed you have the same last names! 🙂 But that may be ignorant b/c perhaps it’s a common name..

  9. Sound like an AWESOME night!! And I LOVE gnocchi! Haven’t had it in WAY too long though…must rectify! 😛

    PB+J sandwiches rock!! I have one a day pretty much! 😀

  10. alex says:

    WOW! exactly reminds me of the restaurant they dined out. you crack me up! love it!

  11. That sounds exactly like Aram and I’s date. We both get different entrees and split an appetizer.

    My favorite Italian dish is Gnocchi! Ah I could eat it for every meal.

  12. My future mother-in-law makes the BEST stuffed shells and meatballs. Oh my goodness – I’m lucky we don’t live near her, or I’d gain 10 pounds in no time 🙂 I adore PB&J and I could eat it every day. You’re right – it’s a match made it heaven! 🙂

  13. I just tried to respond, but it didn’t show up – so I apologize if this comes up twice!
    But my fiance’s mom makes the BEST stuffed shell and meatballs. I’m lucky we don’t live near his family for the sheer fact that I’d gain 10 pounds in no time 🙂 And, on the PB&J – I think it should be considered it’s own food group. You’re right PB&J is a match made in heaven!

  14. Kristina says:

    I’m with ya, I could def eat italian every day! I used to actually….I literally had spaghetti EVERY day when I was in hs!

  15. I need to find an awesome italian restaurant in NC! I haven’t ventured out much yet!

    and omggggg I need pb&J now — everyone is photographing it lately… i want to be 5 again! ❤

  16. UM who doesnt like pb&js.. and if someone didnt id be concerned!!!! i like getting pizza and salads!

  17. I have never been a big Italian food fan – But when i go I love to get a pasta alla vodka dish and of course BREAD! I love peanut butter and fluff sandwiches…or peanut butter and bananas! Or even peanut butter and butter. Weird right?

  18. shoshana says:

    I LOVE italian food – I usually order gnocci when out 🙂

  19. I ordered Pizza yesterday it was really good! Hope you enjoyed the gnocchi i love it!!! anything with cream sauce is good! The almost a heart pb and j looks YUMMY i need to make me a PB and J Soon! Americcan Idol tonight!! 🙂

  20. BIOCHEMISTA says:

    Very (very!) jealous of your lovely Italian meal. Sadly, I’m allergic to most cheeses so for me, Italian is VERY hard. I wasn’t always allergic so I *do* know how amazing it is. My favorite used to be a super cheesy piece of veg lasagna. I’m not allergic to cottage cheese so my mom started making lasagna with cottage cheese substituted for ricotta and it’s actually SO GOOD. I think I prefer it better than ricotta actually.

    Have a great day 🙂

  21. P.S. I love you very much and I don’t tell you how proud I am to have a sister like you you inspire me to do better everyday!

  22. Tara says:

    It sounds like y’all had a great dinner! The bread and cheese sounds delicious.

    I like to order ravioli or some kind of spicy chicken and pasta dish.

    LOVE PB&J but I also like PB & banana a lot too!

  23. Kayla says:

    Oh man, I haven’t had a good ole pb and jelly sandwich in so long. And I just ran out of peanut butter…ugh!

    I love doing pb and banana but today I think I’ll do almond butter and blueberry preserves sandwich!

  24. Oh my goodness, girl, seriously, I hear you! I could eat Italian every day and not think anything of it! In fact… I have before, hehe! I’ve gone on two week kicks of nothing but Italian a couple of times and I love it every time. Sooo yummy!

    Looks like SUCH a great date! Love everything about it! We’re the same way when we go out – no alcohol, no dessert and we don’t even get an appetizer (so we tend to go to places that give you free bread or chips, haha!). I always feel badly for whoever is waiting on us ’cause I’m sure they are thinking “ugh, I am getting no tip from these tightwads” but it’s not true! We tip really well to make up for the fact that we aren’t ordering expensive meals. 😉 Oh! And sometimes… sometimes we even split an entree if we’re going somewhere we’ve been frequently, haha!

    Um yesh, love pb&j! SO yummy!

  25. mmmstories says:

    Yum Yum! I love gnocchi or ravioli too…especially when they’re filled with savory combos like butternut squash! Wheat Chex and Oatmeal Squares never last long in my house…oops. haha

  26. I love love love Italian food. It is what my bf and I always suggest to eat first!! I order different foods everytime but they are always centered around some type of pasta and marinara sauce!

  27. Angela says:

    I love everything Italian. And I love pb&j. I like to toast it and add a little crunch to it. 🙂

  28. Lisa says:

    The italian food sounds great! …the cheese with the bread sounds like a great idea—way better than butter!

    I would definitely go for the gnocchis!!!

  29. Jenny says:

    Wow that restaurant sounds fantastic! I love Fettucini Alfredo but I hardly ever order it because it’s so many calories! And I def love pb & j sammies. Sad part is I had my first one last year :O I know “gasp!”

  30. I don’t go to Italian much–it’s delish, but I always prefer Asian restaurants–but when I do I always want gnocchi. It’s one of my favorite foods, ever! And as for PB&J, I eat the combo on something almost every day. Seriously. 24 years later… I’ll be 75 and still eating them. Can’t wait. 🙂 But PB honey and banana has been usurping the standard as of late…

  31. Italian is my favorite! I just might have to try this place! It’s actually not too far from me. I’ll go any distance for good Italian food!

  32. Pingback: Short and Sweet | Raven Waves

  33. dressed2dish says:

    Your PB&J looks Delish! I usually pair my Peanut Butter with bananas too, I’m thinking of trying a grilled PB&J this weekend…we shall see how that is! I have also been eating pasta practically every night…so I’m always looking for new combinations 🙂

  34. I love peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!!! I like replacing the jam with bananas, apples, or strawberries and then drizzling a little bit of honey on top. TO DIE FOR! 😀

  35. Sere says:

    I couldn’t agree more about the italian food (I’m italian =)

    But I also know to love an ol’ PBJ sandwich. As change, I replace the jelly with grilled bananas or different kind of jam.

  36. Colleen says:

    Hey girl! I just awarded you the Versatile Blogger Award! 😀 Have a great day!

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