Regional Dining Guide - 14
Joey Canova and chef Bernie Harding.
Joey C’ Cucina: Not Your Typical Italian Restaurant

Discover a Rockford eatery built from a dream and some of Rockford’s great tastes, and see why this little storefront has become a big hit with a mature audience.

Ernie and Mimi Leombruni have successfully run their Byron restaurant, Leombruni’s Italian Village, for 40 years of their successful 46-year marriage. (Karla Nagy photo)
Leombruni’s Italian Village: Built by Family and Friends

It began with family recipes, serving neighbors as if they were at the dining room table. Forty years later, this couple has built a loyal following.

Ross Vehmeier, general manager of The Rafters, is working with his dad, Gary, to develop the Lena Brewing Company. (Samantha Ryan photo)
The Rafters: New Brewery, Expanded Menu Debut

The newest attraction at Lena’s favorite highway stop is just the start of a fresh new look.

Greek Pork Chop, The Olympic Tavern: A single or twin 5-ounce pork chop is grilled and topped with olive tapenade, feta cheese, roasted red pepper coulis and sauteed spinach.  “To add flavor, I add olive oil, fresh herb capers and anchovies,” says Chef Jerry Frystak. “There’s no sauce or cream, just red pepper sauce that is mildly sweet and spicy at the same time, which enhances the flavor. It’s topped off with a little feta cheese to deepen the experience and give your palate a little run-around.” (Tom Holoubek photo)
Local Restaurants Present Healthful Options

Healthy eaters can breathe a sigh of relief, as local restaurants are catching on to the latest eating trends. Meet four local chefs who are helping a fitness center to take up the charge, with some delightful new dishes.

Shpresim and Afrim Seferi, owners of Amici Italian Grill.
Amici Italian Grill: Hands-On Owners Offer Fresh Italian Fare

Meet a pair of brothers who go the extra mile to create a warm, inviting atmosphere at their brand-new Roscoe restaurant, and discover some of the mouthwatering dishes they’ve dreamed up.