Went to Buona Terra, a neighborhood italian in Logan Square, last night.
The dining room is two smallish storefronts, I'm guessing 15-20 tables total, which were a little tightly packed, but no worse than any number of other small restaurants around the city.
Overall, I'd say there was good value for the dollar to be had (entrees were all in the $10 to $15 range) and overall quality and service was solid. The menu had a range of pasta, chicken, fish, and veal, along with several specials.
Started w/ a Caprese salad that was a little bland, owing to the fact that tomatoes are just starting to come into season. The fresh motz and olive oil were of good quality, so in another few weeks when tomatoes are better, this should be a very good choice. Also had the pasta fagole soup. It was tasty. The beans were pureed, which struck me as unusual, but maybe its just me.
The shrimp ravioli in spicy tomato sauce was very good. The shrimp flavor in the filling really came through and gave way to a pleasant burn from the spicy sauce on the finish. Just enough cream to mellow everything out and provide a great mouthfeel.
The bread salad was disappointing only in that the bread was dry - it was toasted enough to prevent it from soaking up the liquid from the other ingredients.
Finished up with a good canoli and espresso. The espresso was better than in most places I've eaten in Chicago - still can't touch a cafe in Italy, but that would be expecting too much.
The one disappointment here was the wine list. Limited choices (to be expected in a mid-scale place like this - but they could have done better within the same scope and price points) and not really selected to compliment the food. Most of the choices were CA standards. Only noticed 1 Italian wine (a pinot grigio) and a Sangiovese (from CA) on the list. Bottles were mostly in the $20-$30 range.
All in all - a good place. Its made my list of places to return to.
2535 N. California