Cucina Paradiso has undergone a renovation to rejuvenate and update its image. Gone are the white tablecloths (which generally now feel a little old-timey), in are new banquettes (cozy!), though many of the posters remain on the walls: you'll still recognize the places. My main interest, of course, was in the renovated menu.
Recently, I drove out to Woodfield to go to the new Kuma's Corner, and I posted a picture of the place on Facebook. Many people responded negatively, because it seemed, as one poster put it, "just wrong" to locate such a place in suburbia
I was touched when a friend, Matt Zatkoff, told me that he and some others were putting in many hours of their otherwise free time to help out the folks at Rainbow Thai Cuisine, a small restaurant on Chicago's north side (4825 N. Western) owned by husband-wife team Pramote Rukprueksachart and Wanpen Phosawang.
In May's Name That Restaurant game, the mystery dish was Pear Pizza from Cucina Paradiso. The winner was Nedra Boyer who told us, "I would recognize that pizza because I order it a lot! The pizza and the rustic salad are dinner many times."
No doubt, most people prefer wheat-based pasta, bread and pizza; it's what most of us have enjoyed all our lives. But if you have to avoid gluten, or if you just want to limit your gluten intake, the non-wheat pizza at Cucina Paradiso is a good and delicious way to go.