Going out to eat is a nice treat and a well-deserved distraction from the many distractions that are in our busy lives. With intimate settings such as low lighting and a relatively smaller dining area, Sage restaurant does their part in making sure that your dining experience is one that allows you to sit back, relax and enjoy some fresh Italian cuisine. “At Sage, we definitely like the idea of, when you go out to dinner, you are there for them and they are there for you. We want you to get closer to them. People building and strengthening their relationships is something we love to be part of. For those reasons, we do not have a television. It is definitely a more intimate environment.” says Jimmy Veal, front house manager at Sage.

Sage restaurant actually got its start in Chesterton in 2011 by husband and wife duo Joe and Melissa Gaal. In 2015, they moved Sage to their current downtown Valparaiso location. “It is a more lively community. They seem to be more creativity-focused and food-focused here, which we have definitely seen to be true. It turned out to be a great move and we still have a lot of great guests who still come here from Chesterton,” said Veal.

Being an Italian restaurant, you will find many of your traditional Italian dishes such as chicken marsala and ravioli and some dishes you that may not be considered traditional. “We have sushi-grade seafood. A lot of things are not what you may find at a traditional Italian restaurant, rather they are plays on some traditional dishes and what Chef Joe wants to showcase to people. The food is fresh and made to order. Chef Joe does not believe in cutting corners when it comes to the quality of food. It is beautiful. There is a passion to what you are seeing on the plate.”

Summertime brings another ambient element to Sage. With a back patio located right next to Urchel Pavilion, this unique feature allows guests to enjoy both Sage restaurant and the happenings of Central Park Plaza. “We are one of the only restaurants that have real estate that opens up onto one of the parks. We feel like that really gives us an edge. You feel more like part of the community.”

With so many events going on, Veal was immediately intrigued by everything that was going on in Valparaiso. “I moved to Valparaiso because of what is happening in downtown. I came to downtown when I started working at Sage and immediately realized that this was the place to be. There are a lot of great people, so many nice events. I tell people that we are incredibly spoiled here and should appreciate what we have.”

Sage restaurant is located at 157 West Lincolnway in downtown Valparaiso. For more information, including a full menu, you can visit their website at sagerestaurant.net. You can also follow them on Facebook, where you can find out about many of the events held by Sage. For reservations, you can call them at (219) 464-7243.