Recently, upon venturing out of the chow desert known as Rosemont for lunch, I was encouraged by a coworker to make my way over to a little Itlian joint in Park Ridge for a decent if not pricey quick lunch.
Thus, I found myself wandering into Sonny's at 800 W. Devon in the Walgreen's Shopping Center. "Great," I thought as I entered, "strip mall Italian". But, I was hungry, so I ventured forward.
Sonny's is a full service Italian American place that tends to pack in the locals for dinner. However, by day, lunch is served largely from a steam table in the front of the restaurant after which patrons can make themselves at home at one of the restaurant's comfortable tables or booths.
The star of the show at lunch is Sonny's excellent homemade meatballs served in a slowly cooked rich tomatoe gravy which the restaurant refers to as "meat sauce". What a terribly simple description for a fatty, rich robust tomato sauce as the one that they serve there. Sonny's also makes a pretty fine fresh marinara that reminds me of the good Jersey red sauce italian that one can find throughout Bergen County. You can have the meatballs on a sandwich or over pasta at lunch.
They also have a really good breaded steak sandwich served on crusty italian loaf and an "italian beef" sandwich that loooks wonderful but fails to live up to its looks in terms of taste.
More often than not, I avail myself of a small bowl of their fresh pasta topped with two of those outstanding homemade meatballs in sauce and a generous sprinkle of grated reggiano.
I recently had the opportunity to try Sonny's for an early dinner where I had an excellent house made meat ravioli with that incredibly rich meatball gravy while my partner in chow went for a small thin crust cheese pizza that was excellent and crispy like a good New York Style Pizza should be.
With all of this talk of Rocco Despirito's mother's meatballs making the rounds of chow talk these days, I just wanted my fellow hounds to know that red sauce excellence abounds in our very own little hamlet of Park Ridge.
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