Convito Cafe & Market is a Taste of Europe in Illinois
Savor the flavors of Italy and France at one of Wilmette’s landmark local restaurants. Convito Café & Market offers a European-inspired menu featuring daily fish and meat specials, handmade pastas, salads, sandwiches and more.
The market adjacent to the café sells frozen and boxed pastas, 22 frozen sauces, to-go salads, baked sweets and pastries, wines, cheeses, olive oils, vinegars, crusty baguettes and take-home meals you heat and eat.
“We have a big selection – some great stuffed pastas and at least 20 different salads. My kids love the stuffed chicken breast,” says Candace Barocci Warner, general manager and managing partner of Convito Café & Market. “The café is bright, cozy and whimsical with watercolors and photography on the walls and a beautiful poured brick floor. It’s a fun place to come sit awhile.”
Candace grew up working at Convito (an ancient Italian word meaning “feast”), which her mother Nancy Brussat Barocci opened in 1980. The family lived in Europe when Candace was a child, and Nancy traveled frequently to Italy. She brought Italian and French flavors to Wilmette via Convito and quickly became known for her homemade sauces and fresh pastas created in-house with Italian pasta machines.
“We’ve been selling some of the same great items for more than 30 years, and we’ve stayed true to our roots and original recipes,” Candace says. “My mom and our head chef work together to update our menu a few times per year, but we keep classics, such as our French onion soup, four-cheese pasta and sautéed whitefish piccata on the menu all the time. People just love the whitefish, and it’s served with paper-thin potatoes, green beans, herb croutons, white wine, lemon and capers.”
The dessert menu also aims to please, with a top-selling chocolate fondant – flourless cake with a warm liquid center and whipped cream – as well as tiramisu, cobblers and crème brûlée made with Madagascar vanilla beans.
If You Go...
Café Hours: Monday through Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. (until 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday); Sundays, 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Market Hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturdays 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sundays 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Phone: (847) 251-3654