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One week in Chicagoland, suggestions please.

White Chocolate Grill is unique and they have great food too. It's right around all the hotels in Naperville off of Diehl Road. You gotta try the AZ egg rolls. They are to die for!

Downtown Naperville is a must visit. You'll find a wide variety of restaurants within walking distance of each other and various places to see live bands etc.

Oct 08, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Hidden Italian Gem in Downtown Naperville?
I went to Jilly's recently and had some great Italian food. They just started offering a full dinner menu and have partnered with the people at ZaZa's Italian Steak House. I don't think word has gotten around about this (yet) because it could have been more crowded. That night we had a gourmet pizza that was really very good. Other tables around us had full Italian dinners with pastas, etc. I intend to go back and try an entree next time. Anyone else try their new menu?

Jul 30, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Tessa's Has Closed
The doors were permanently closed at Tessa's Famiglia e Amici on Sunday July 27. Was it the downturn in the economy? The location? Parking? Whatever it was, the restaurant and all its contents at 16 W. Jefferson Ave. in Naperville are up for sale now.

There are still plenty of other Italian places in downtown Naperville such as La Sorella Di Francesca, Rosebud, Giordanos and Lou Malnati's.

Jul 29, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Hi Camille,
Downtown Naperville is only about 4-1/2 miles from the Route 59 train station. The really great thing about the downtown area is that there are so very many different places to eat, drink and be entertained within walking distance of each other. Here is a map that you can download and print out to get a good idea of what bars and restaurants there are to visit and also where to park. Hope it helps http://www.napernightlife.com/map.html

Jul 09, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

I believe Hugo's and Timpano's are in very similar in price and quality of food. What sets them apart (in my opinion) is the atmosphere of each place. Hugo's has a nautical theme with a much bigger, busier bar area. Timpano's has a club-like atmosphere with more restaurant area than bar, and to me it doesn't have as much of a crowded feel (more elbow room) on a busy night.

Apr 26, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

You are so right. I can't believe I left out Rosebud. It has been at Main and Chicago Ave. for a long time and is a local favorite with nice big portions at reasonable prices. If the weather is nice you could also sit outside along the river on their deck.

Apr 24, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

The downtown Naperville area is unique in that it has over TWENTY full-service restaurants that are within walking distance of each other. At the high end of the steak places are Hugo's Frog Bar and Catch 35 off of Van Buren, Sullivans on Main St. and Timpano Italian Chop house at Washington & Chicago Ave. Ted's Montana Grill on Jefferson would be a "lesser expensive" steak place relatively speaking. Hugo's has EXCELLENT steaks and has a lively atmosphere with live jazz emanating through the place from their bar area.

The pizza places are Lou Malnati's on Jefferson and Giordano's on Main Street. Lou Malnati's is famous for their Chicago style pizza and their location is in the old Naperville firehouse. They open the firehouse doors to the restaurant when weather permits. There are three italian restaurants that are all on Jefferson just steps from each other: Rizzo's (as was previously suggested), Tessa's Famiglia e Amici and LaSorella de Francesca. Rizzo's is a smaller casual place with dishes that have an italian flare. Tessa's is a larger casual place with a wide ranging traditional italian menu and huge portions. La Sorella is on the higher end and encourages the lively art of dining and is very popular with the locals.

You'll find a good burger at the area bars & clubs that are on Chicago Ave., west of Washington: The Lantern, Club Mamalu, Features Bar & Grill and Jimmy's Grill which has a huge outdoor seating area.

Check out the Riverwalk if you have time. It's a beautiful park right in downtown Naperville that runs along the river with lush landscaping, brick paths, fountains, covered bridges, paddle boats and the carillon (bell tower).

Apr 12, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

FUN but foodie dinner dt

After slowing down a bit and re-reading the OP I see it was the opposite of what I thought I read........sorry for any confusion

Jan 03, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

FUN but foodie dinner dt

How about...
Drinks at Bar Louie, dinner at Timpano Italian Chop House and a comedy show at the Comedy Shrine? All of these locations are right in the same strip mall and there is a parking garage right across the street on Chicago Avenue just east of Washington St.

Its right in the heart of the action downtown with more bars, restaurants and live bands at Frankies Blue room, on Chicago Ave. just west of Washington St.

Jan 03, 2008
janybird in Chicago Area

Caterer for small group at Christmas

How about Heaven on Seven
They have a wide variety of food choices
http://www.heavenonseven.com/catering...

Dec 05, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Salbute closing

In defense of Downtown Naperville, it really is far from almost ALL corporate/big name restaurants. I mean, there are some, like Ted's Montana Grill, Sullivans, Hugo's, Jilly's, Catch 35, etc. but many people seem to overlook the smaller unique (and popular) non-chain restaurants as well. Like Tessa's for example and Front Street Cantina, Masala Yangu, La Sorella Di Francesca and Meson Sabika among others. In my opinion there's a "good mix" of restaurants in Downtown Naperville.

Dec 03, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Quigleys would be THE place for you to get something to eat and bring your dog. They actually advertise their patio as "dog friendly, as long as the dog is friendly". It's an easy going place, good for a casual lunch. It gets a little crazier at night as it is very close to the college, etc. etc.

Oct 26, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Twisted Cork in Naperville

So it's been a little while now since they opened. They changed their name and their website is up http://www.distinctivecork.com. I did try to go there a couple weeks ago on a Tuesday and their sign indicated they opened at 5pm but their closed sign was lit at 5:15 and no one appeared to be around. Instead of waiting around, we went elsewhere. We did go by the place after we had dinner and it had opened and appeared to have a nice crowd inside. Has anyone been there lately? I hope they have overcome some of their issues since first opening (maybe we just went on an off night).

Oct 10, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

This weekend in Naperville the Rotary Club is sponsoring it's sixteenth annual Oktoberfest. It will be held in a huge heated tent on Van Buren Street, just west of Main, across from Hugo's Frog Bar right in downtown Naperville. Food choices include grilled sausages, bratwurst and all-beef hot dogs, boneless, skinless chicken breast, sauerkraut and hot German potato salad, apple strudel and German chocolate cake.

Domestic and German import beers, such as Warsteiner, will be available as well as wine, along with soft drinks.

I went last year and saw many authentic german costumes, got a free german hat and had dinner. We had a good time listening to the german um-pah band. It's a good place to go and meet a group of friends for a little seasonal fun.

Oct 04, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

The Naperville Wine Festival is being held this coming weekend on Friday, Sept. 14 & Saturday, Sept. 15. on the grounds of the Naper Settlement in Downtown Naperville. For those interested they have a website http://www.napervillewinefestival.com

According to their site they will be having:

Seminars/Demonstrations - Conducted by event sponsors, exhibiting wineries, Chicago area chefs, restaurateurs and specialty food shops.

Wine - The opportunity to sample from more than 200 wines from around the world. Learn about new and exciting varieties from the experts in a relaxed festival setting.

Food - Enjoy food from some of Naperville’s finest restaurants and caterers. Attend cooking demonstrations by some of the Chicago area’s top chefs and specialty food stores. Learn how to pair wines with food.

Music – Entertainment provided by top local talent including The Michael Heaton Band and the New Invaders. Blues • Lite Rock • Jazz

Sep 09, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Riva Naperville would be my suggestion. It is in the area and would seem to be what you are looking for as far as dinner goes. http://www.stefanirestaurants.com/riv...

For music and dancing I would recommend Key Wester on Route 59. It's very lively in the bar and they have live bands. http://www.portillos.com/keywester/look/

Sep 06, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Tommy Nevins Pub in Naperville

I ended up visiting Tommy's a few days ago with a friend who lives in that area. A lively atmosphere indeed!! It's a fairly large place and is VERY popular with the locals. Love the leather upholstered walls, tin ceilings, wood paneling, fireplace with a sitting area and two bars. The south end of Naperville sure seems to be welcoming this new addition to the booming restaurant and retail area along Route 59. We had such a good time we never made it to the restaurant although I would like to go back to try it out. We had appetizers and I highly recommend the drunken sailors (on their menu) ;-) .

Aug 16, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Great salad selection

I was shopping at the Promenade in Bolingbrook today and noticed a new Salad Creations restaurant. It looked interesting. There is also one on Monroe in Chicago. http://www.saladcreations.net/

Good for you on your desire to eat healthier!

Aug 03, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Tommy Nevins Pub in Naperville

Has anyone been to this new place yet? It is on the west side of Route 59 south of 103rd St. in front of the English Rows townhouses.

Aug 03, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Yes, another large building is planned for downtown Naperville at the corner of Main, Van Buren and Benton. I am very happy to hear that there will be more retail, we could use more of that. Along with Banana Republic and J. Crew, American Eagle is planned to be there (my college age daughter was happy to hear about that). The shopping in that part of town is already nice with Coldwater Creek, Ann Taylor Loft and J-Jill and it appears it will only get better. I checked out Ruth's Chris Steakhouse website and it looks interesting as well. It would be nice to hear from others who have visited one in another city.

Here's a link more details and I believe there is a picture of the proposed building right on the home page: http://www.thenapervilleglancer.com (click on BIG STORY to view the article)

Jul 31, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Maybe its the dog days of summer or we just got lucky, but we were surprised to get a table at Timpano WITHOUT A RESERVATION last Saturday night without waiting. The food was excellent, love the atmosphere too.

Jul 31, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Red Door Tavern in Naperville.

I don't get them, one day they close, then they re-open, then they close again??? I just tried calling down there and their line is "temporarily disconnected"!?!?!?

Jul 30, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Downtown Naperville & Naperville Area Restaurants

Went by there tonight and found The Wild Rose to be a women's clothing boutique. There are plenty of food & drink places in that strip mall already. Another restaurant in that area would only cause more parking congestion in the evening. We found a parking spot in that lot tonight and had a great dinner at Timpano Chop House.

Jul 28, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Twisted Cork in Naperville

Thanks to everyone for their thoughts and opinions so far. The article in the Naperville Sun today was interesting and did indicate the owners were not veteran restaurant owners. It appears that they do have a passion for what they are doing and that can only help them in their efforts to make the business successful. I like the concept of it being a local place to be able to go to and have a glass of wine and an appetizer or light meal after a movie or shopping....or just to get out for a while. Maybe it's like a fine wine and will get better as it ages ;-)

Jul 25, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Twisted Cork in Naperville

I've driven by the Twisted Cork in the Naperville Plaza at Gartner and Washington St. many times but haven't yet visited. They say it features small dishes and salads, as well as desserts, a lot of wine by the glass and bottle as well as live music. Has anyone experienced it yet?

Jul 25, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Ethnic Restaruants in the Naperville area

I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it. I hope to go soon. It is in the "Jefferson Hill Shops" building, a very large white mansion that a former mayor of Naperville and family used to live in. It is in the space that occupied the long-standing Jefferson Hill Tea Room. I was surprised to hear it closed after so many years. The owner of Masala Yangu is a musician as well and his band plays there along with other musicians and entertainers. Sounds intriguing. (Quigleys Irish Pub is in the lower section of the same building).

Jul 16, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Ethnic Restaruants in the Naperville area

Masala Yangu recently opened in downtown Naperville. It offers a "potpurri of African, Arab and Indian cultures" and is located on Jefferson Ave. just east of Washington St. in a huge white mansion. I haven't been there yet but heard from others that it is very good. http://www.masalayangu.com

Jul 16, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Sunday Lunch/Brunch in Chicago Suburbs

An interesting diversion may be Hollywood Casino in Aurora. I have never eaten in any of the restaurants there but have heard the buffet is decent.
http://www.hollywoodcasinoaurora.com/...

Jul 14, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Naperville Ribfest - Stay Away This Year

Well, I had a good time last night. We did go and get ribs at Uncle Bub's and I must say they were VERY good. It's not an easy task feeding hundreds (or thousands?) of people a day and I think they did a exceptional job and they are DEFINITELY worth trying. The crowds were fairly light being that a lot of people had to work today. Don't get me wrong, there were a lot of people there, but they weren't crowded in. There was space available to get around. It would be a shame if you didn't go ONLY because you didn't like the ribs there. There's a lot more to do than just eat ribs at Ribfest.

Jul 03, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area

Naperville Ribfest - Stay Away This Year

I go to Ribfest for the music and friends that meet up there. I've eaten some good ribs there through the years and there are also some alternatives to ribs (Heaven on Seven and Angelis). And there are a lot more than 4 rib vendors at Ribfest. Here are the best in competition this year. For those who still may be going these may be your best bets:

Uncle Bub's of Westmont, Ill. won the title of best ribs
Famous Daves of Plymouth, Minn. took second place
Armadillo's of Youngstown, Ohio placed third.

Armadillo's took first place in best sauce
Uncle Bub's took second place in the sauce category
Sgt. Oink's BBQ Co. of Tiffin, Ohio took third place.

Looks Like Uncle Bub's might be THE one to try. Hope you have fun if you go. I'm going tonight (and maybe again on the 4th)

Jul 02, 2007
janybird in Chicago Area