Gianna Hadjis loved getting Italian beef sandwiches with her dad. It’s a memory her father Adam Hadjis cherishes. Gianna was just 4-years-old when she died in Chicago after an accident with a falling television in 2012. “It was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever gone through in my life,” Hadjis said. “After she died, there was this big void in me...

Pizza is delicious. But free pizza is divine. And Pagliai’s Pizza in Johnston wants to celebrate their family's 61-year legacy with free pizza by honoring their Northern Italian grandparents, Nonno and Nonna Pagliai. Pagliai’s will give away a free pizza per week through Thanksgiving. Hungry diners who visit Pagliai’s Pizza at 5312 Merle Hay Road i...

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds is proclaiming Monday as the state's inaugural Indigenous Peoples Day — a trend that's growing nationwide in acknowledgement of Native Americans, according to a press release from the Iowa Department of Human Rights.  Typically, the second Monday of October has celebrated Columbus Day. However, critics say Columbus Day holida...

An Italian restaurant that closed in October 2016 is making a comeback almost two years later. It will be serving its most popular dishes in a new location at 6611 University Avenue Windsor Heights. Blue Tomato Kitchen, formerly located at 860 1st St., West Des Moines, is being given new life in the 50-seat space that once housed Saison Kitchen + B...

Portillo's officials announced Thursday it will open a Davenport restaurant in 2019.  The fast-casual restaurant chain, known for Chicago-style hot dogs and Italian beef, unveiled more plans for a restaurant, complete with a design rendering with a "Welcome to Davenportillo's" sign. It'll be the company's first Iowa location, located across from Co...

I've driven past the nondescript commercial building at 8421 University Blvd. in Clive hundreds of times before noticing the Italian flags flanking A Taste of Italy there.  Having a special place in my stomach for Italian meats, I knew I needed to put the Italian grocery and deli on my list for lunch — and I'm so glad I did. The small deli counter...

Des Moines knows how to put on a quality festival. Look no further than the successful Des Moines Arts Festival, 80/35 Music Festival and the Iowa State Fair, among others. Last year, Des Moines was recognized for its achievement by earning the World Festival & Event City Award, given by the International Festivals and Events Association. The ninth...

Live music, Italian food and a traditional horse parade are among the highlights when the 22nd annual Italian Feast of SS. Crocifisso takes place this weekend on the grounds of Maryville Academy in Des Plaines. Kicking off at 7:30 p.m. Saturday with Vespers at Marian Chapel, the event runs Saturday night and Sunday at 1150 N. River Road, Des Plaine...

Sapori Italiani, a European-style pizzeria run by one of the most prestigious chefs in North America, will open to the public Monday. The restaurant, opening in the former home of Vesuvius Wood-Fired Pizza at 1620 S. Kellogg Ave., has a menu of meat and cheese boards, salads, calzones, stromboli, paninis, pastas and pizzas, generally run between $9...

A space inside the Freight House marketplace near Davenport’s riverfront will soon offer something new: A taste of Antonella’s Ristorante & Pizza. The Sicilian restaurant that has served pastas and pizzas in Davenport since 2002 is planning to open a second, more casual, location in the space formerly housed by the Quad-Cities Food Hub, which close...