The owner of Rosati's Pizza of New Lenox, Shawna Casey, said when it came to selecting a spot to locate her new business, it wasn't something she took lightly. A veteran in the restaurant business, she first conducted research on three towns in the south and west suburbs.
New Lenox won out after she visited the area and spent a few days driving around and getting a feel for the kind of community that would welcome her business. Opening a new restaurant is a big step, she said. And New Lenox had all the ingredients she was looking for.
Rosati's, 108 W. Illinois Highway, is opened from 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays and from 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.
Like the variety of items available—thick and thin styles of pizza, baked calzones, fried calamari, shrimp baskets and even fresh cannoli for dessert—the New Lenox community offered a rich demographic mix of singles and families.
Her first impression of the town, said Casey, "I thought it was a great town, a great environment."
Already a member of New Lenox Chamber of Commerce, she's looking forward to a mid-November grand opening. In the meantime, she's hired a staff of 15 locals who have been trained to prepare the secret recipes, especially the pizza and special sauce that was made famous back in 1964 at the original Rosati's Restaurant on Halsted Avenue in Chicago.
The restaurant is well-known for its original Chicago-style pizza, she said. Of course, the menu has been enhanced with fresh variations, including gourmet pizzas and pasta dishes for delivery or take-out. Casey highlighted the restaurant's catering packages that feature everything from homemade Italian beef to combination mostaccioli and fried chicken packages. There's a'la carte catering packages too.
With a wide smile, she gathered her Friday night staff together for a group photo and then greeted customers as they stepped up to the counter to place an order.
Already she's acquired a regular, Kleve Slouber, who lives nearby. "I came in yesterday and the beef. Today I'm trying the shrimp."
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