RSSRestaurant Scene By Eloise Marie Valadez

A look at various happenings, reviews, chef info and other food talk from the region and Chicagoland.

Giuseppe's wins praise for authentic Italian recipes

Giuseppe's wins praise for authentic Italian recipes

Joe Belmonte and his family have the recipe for superb Italian fare and they're serving it at Giuseppe's Restaurant in Schererville.

The restaurant debuted in the fall of 2011 on Eagle Ridge Drive not far from ShowPlace Theaters and is a short walk from the Schererville Post Office.

Giuseppe's may be off the beaten path (it's a block in from busy Indianapolis Boulevard) but in the past three years the eatery has drawn much repeat business from Italian food fans who've spread the word.

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Readers share shopping and savings tips

July 06, 2014 1:00 am  • 

My readers have been busy sending in their favorite tips for shopping, couponing, saving money and more. Here’s a roundup of some of the best emails I’ve received lately.

“Dear Jill,

This tip is so easy but I’m afraid many people don’t take advantage of it. If you carry a coupon wallet or binder, put a return address label inside the cover with your name and address on it. If you lose your coupons (and face it, a lot of us carry many coupons around) you have no way to get those coupons back to you without some info on it. You wouldn’t take a suitcase on a trip without a luggage tag, right? Couponers are generally pretty good people and I sure would mail someone’s wallet back if I found it left in a cart. You know what they say about an ounce of prevention.

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Meatheads opens first eatery in Northwest Indiana

Meatheads opens first eatery in Northwest Indiana
June 26, 2014 1:00 am  • 

Personnel behind Meatheads, the casual eatery with the slogan "thoughtful food by caring people" recently brought the restaurant to Northwest Indiana.

Meatheads' Munster location opened with a ribbon cutting ceremony on June 2. The restaurant chain, which began in Bloomington, Ill., will also debut a Schererville eatery on Indianapolis Boulevard sometime this summer.

At Meatheads, burgers, sandwiches, fries, salads, milkshakes and more star on the menu, which boasts "high quality, fresh and  never frozen" ingredients.

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Sage serves up Italian cuisine at its finest

Sage serves up Italian cuisine at its finest
May 22, 2014 1:00 am  • 

Fresh, quality ingredients, innovative preparations and a chef-driven menu star at Sage Restaurant in Chesterton.

The restaurant, owned by executive chef Joe Gaal, opened three years ago. Its menu features a variety of American/Italian offerings from specialty salads and pizzas to homemade pasta, seafood, risotto, sandwiches, flatbreads, cheese selections, innovative desserts and more.

"We want to continue bringing a quality product to people," said Gaal, adding he strives to offer recipes that stand out and are different from other restaurants.

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Dining Buzz

May 15, 2014 1:00 am  • 

Vegas Italiano

Blue Chip Casino's It's Vegas Baby presents "Vegas Italiano" from 5 to 10 p.m. Thursdays. Guests may create their own entree for $12.95. Visit

Lobsta Fest

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Food Bites

Lobsta Fest

Lobsta Fest # 24 will be held Saturday at Town Club Steak and Seafood, 2904 45th Ave., Highland. Cost is $44.95. Call (219) 924-5227 or visit

New Chef

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Freddy's Steak House remains a Hammond highlight

Freddy's Steak House remains a Hammond highlight
May 13, 2014 12:00 am  • 

Freddy's Steak House has been a Northwest Indiana culinary mainstay for the last five decades.

The restaurant, owned for the last nine years by Jim and Tammy Kamradt, originally opened in 1962. Freddy's menu, from the beginning, starred quality steaks, ribs, chops, seafood and more.

With it's supper-club like feel, the restaurant has long attracted food fans from not only Northwest Indiana but Chicago and its suburbs and other locales.

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Restaurant Scene: Chocolate, chef battles and lobster fest

Time for new season of 'Check, Please!'

Catherine De Orio steps up to the table as the new host of "Check, Please!," and has her debut at 8 p.m. today on WTTW-Channel 11.

A Chicago area native, De Orio, is a food, travel and features writer, and has been a spokeswoman for national brands. The new host was one of 17 finalists to vie for the role. Also in the finalist mix earlier this year was Frank Brunacci, of Munster. Brunacci and his wife Lillian are the co-owners of The Chef's Diamond Company, a truffle importing business. He was also the former executive chef of Sixteen Restaurant at Chicago's Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago and has worked in kitchens around the world.

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Restaurant Scene: Time for chorizo, chili, and anniversary celebrations

Bring on the chorizo creations

The El Popular-Ivy Tech Chorizo Contest will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. today at Ivy Tech Community College's East Chicago campus, 410 E. Columbus Drive. Professional chefs will be among judges for the event. Winners will be announced at 7:30 p.m. Prizes will be awarded in the amounts of $250, $150 and $75. Tickets to taste the chorizo creations are $2. Tickets can be purchased at the finance office. No tickets can be purchased at the door. For more information, call (219) 392-3600, ext. 245. - Eloise Marie Valadez

Autumn Fest Chili Contest

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Restaurant Scene: Locals to bring on the chili

Crown Point Oktoberfest

Mayor David Uran of Crown Point and Crown Brewing have announced the upcoming sixth annual Oktoberfest from 3 to 11 p.m. Saturday on South Main Street. Featured will be a Chili Cook-Off, various food for purchase, live entertainment, bean bag tournament and more. FYI: (219) 661-2271

Chili Cooks in Munster

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