Opening: Al Primo Cantino

If we said to you, AYCE table service Brazilian-influenced Italian family-style dining for $29.95 in Edgebrook, would you have any idea what we were talking about? That’s okay; it took us a while to understand what was going on, too. The restaurant in question is called Al Primo Canto, and it opened last Friday up on Devon and Central, where there are very few similarly ambitious restaurants. The deal is, everybody gets the $29.95 package, which includes any amount of several appetizers, pastas, meat dishes and sides, brought to the table roughly in order, with additional helpings on request.

The dishes sounds rather Italian, but with a twist: Eggplant Caponatto (roasted eggplant with tahini paste, lemon and garlic, finished with extra virgin olive oil) has the unexpected element of tahini; spaghettini Funghi (forest mushroom sauce finished with a demi-glace Madeira wine sauce and shallots) is made with Madeira wine; chicken marinated in white wine, fresh garlic, oregano, sage, extra virgin olive oil, gaucho style rotisserie over natural wood charcoal raises eyebrows with its “gaucho” appelation. Well, all these eccentricities belong to the Portugeue/Brazilian pantry, especially the conceit that all the meat dishes (aside from chicken, beef and lamb are served) are cooked over natural wood charcoal.

Anyway, you’re starting to get the picture of what’s happening. The restaurant has a full bar and a half dozen desserts, which are extra. The restaurant is planning brunch service in the coming weeks, and maybe lunch, too. stevez of LTHForum paid a visit over the weekend and generally enjoyed himself, despite some forgivable errors as the kitchen gears up. But the service was excellent, and there’s nothing else quite like it in Chicagoland (that we know about), so give it a whirl. A veritable road trip, all within the city limits.

Al Primo Canto [MenuPages]

Brazil Comes to Edgebrook [LTHForum]

Opening: Al Primo Cantino