Caruso’s is a second-generation family-owned business located in the lake vacation area just north of Angola, IN. Since 1976, they have strived to provide exceptional dining experiences to all that visit. Siblings Liat and Lisa have focused on bringing back traditional Italian cuisines with a modern twist while their brother, Dan, and his wife Lori are certified (level two) wine sommeliers that helped establish the wine bar that was built in 2016. They are very intentional with all aspects of their business to provide an exceptional environment. At its heart, Caruso’s is a restaurant that is run by family and treats its guests as if they were family.
The history of Caruso’s pre-dates its established date of 1976. Doc Caccamo’s Pizzeria was the original restaurant at this same location. It was Joe and Barb Caruso’s favorite place to go during their family camping vacation at close by Barton Lake. When Joe and Bob purchased Doc’s they kept the house special pizza exactly how it was and it continues to be served at Caruso’s to this day. This level of consistency over the years has been a staple for the restaurant. Having family members running it on a day-to-day basis is a very important aspect of why the restaurant has not only survived but continues to be a destination for so many.
Like all restaurants, Caruso’s has had their share of challenges, especially over the last year. In corporating a new POS system for online ordering, staffing issues, and capacity restrictions have all had an impact. The restaurant has had to make adjustments to open hours and cut back days that they are open to alleviate some of these issues.
Making changes for the betterment of the restaurant is nothing new, though. The owners continue to evolve the restaurant to meet the ever-changing customer demands. One aspect of this has been making a commitment to provide clean, quality, and healthy items on their menu. Caruso’s depends on Superior Foods for its extensive knowledge of seafood and product offerings that meet the restaurant’s high standards. Chef Jeff Brandon of Superior has been a key resource in suggesting unique menu ideas that fit what Caruso’s is trying to accomplish. His knowledge and creativity are just a phone call away which truly has been an asset for them.
Another large change for the restaurant was when they converted their banquet room into a wine bar in 2016. The goal was to have a section in the restaurant that was unmatched by anything in the area. With two certified sommeliers on staff, an extensive variety of wines, and dishes that complement wine parings, they have accomplished this.
Caruso’s is looking forward (like all of us are) to a summer where they can again showcase their creative menu, one-of-a-kind wine bar, and exceptional service.