Downers Grove, Illinois
Downers Grove, Illinois is a village with approximately fifty thousand people calling it home. Located west of Chicago, there are of course many great attractions in the area, including the Downers Grove Heritage Festival which takes place every June, a farmers market from June to October, and an ice sculpture festival each January. August brings in the National Criterium Championships, a cycling event. And of course the high school football games always bring in large crowds too! If you're heading into Downers Grove on one of our party buses for any reason, you may want to plan your dining and drinking around this list of great restaurants and bars. All of these are in the 60515, 60516, and 60517 zip codes.
BALLYDOYLE IRISH PUB & RESTAURANT
There is no better Irish Pub than Ballydoyle. The authentic Dublin decor and antique Irish furniture provide that warm and inviting atmosphere that you love. The menu has a wide range of items, ranging from traditional Irish to Scottish and British fare. They have a buffet (call for info), and they serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Hands down the best corned beef and cabbage we've had in all of Illinois! Great live bands to keep you entertained too!
Address: 5157 Main Street
EMMETT'S ALE HOUSE
We go to Emmett's Ale House mostly for the handcrafted beers, but the atmosphere and great service brings us back too. The prices are very inexpensive here, which is great because they also happen to have some of the best burgers and bar fare in town! Some say the service is a little slow but we haven't experienced that in our many visits. Great drinks and food, and a comfortable and casual atmosphere. Can't beat it.
Address: 5200 Main Street
BRICK HOUSE TAVERN & TAP
The prices at Brick House Tavern & Tap are about average, but since the portions are so huge, you actually end up with an even better deal! Very sexy and scantily clad waitresses come around to take your order and bring you your food and drinks, so you might want to save this one for nights out with the guys as opposed to a special date night with your honey! Great for adults, particularly of the straight male persuasion. Leave the kids at home!
Address: 1461 Butterfield Road
KYOTO JAPANESE SUSHI RESTAURANT
Kyoto Japanese Sushi Restaurant is conveniently located near the Finley Square Mall Shopping Center. Though the prices are incredibly reasonable, the sushi is some of the best we have ever tasted. Got a special date? Order the sweetheart roll, which is a spicy tuna roll shaped like a heart! Very unusual and cute. The selections here range from the traditional to the creative, so if you want to try something a little more adventurous that you won't find anywhere else, this is your place! The salmon rolls are the best if you ask us.
Address: 1408 Butterfield Road
One of our favorite things about Carlucci Restaurant is the outdoor patio. It's so nice to enjoy an Italian meal in the warm summer breezes. Since 2003, this restaurant has been serving happy customers outstanding Italian specialties, steaks, and seafood. The Chicken Marsala is always an excellent bet, or just take your pick from any one of their unusual specials!
Address: 1801 Butterfield Road
Located conveniently on Main Street, Capri Ristorante brings the flavor of Italy home to Downer's Grove. The seafood mixed grill appetizer is our favorite thing on the menu here, but there are plenty of options for everyone. You're definitely not just limited to fish--there are plenty of other types of seafood, steaks, and poultry. There's usually live entertainment on the weekends, and the volume is just right, never overbearing. Just a very pleasant dining experience that we'd recommend to anyone!
Address: 5101 Main Street
CHEESEBURGER IN PARADISE
Named after the Jimmy Buffet song (it's his restaurant!), Cheeseburger in Paradise actually has much more than just cheeseburgers! Though it's a chain restaurant, it's one of our favorites, with the tropical treats and slushy frozen alcoholic drinks. They've got everything here from American fare to Cajun, from Carribean to Cuban, from Creole to Jamaican. The Dragon Fire Chicken Wings are downright incredible. You'll feel like you have stepped into an island paradise.
Address: 2970 Finley Road
Hot dogs, burgers, chili, and more! The Portillo specializes in all that great bar fare but in a more restaurant type setting. It's got an 80s diner vibe with lots of neon. But forget the decor. Let's talk food. We love the "Beef-N-Sausage Sandwiches," particularly the Italian Beef. The breaded chicken croissants are also delicious, as are the halibut fillet sandwiches! We can't stop coming back to The Portillo for all their great deep fried specialties.
Address: 1500 Butterfield Road
LAO SZE CHUAN CHINESE RESTAURANT
Spicy Chinese! We love this place. Their specialties are the spicy swordfish fillet and the dry chili chicken (told ya they like it hot here!). If you like a little heat (or a lot!) with your Asian specialties, you will very quickly get hooked on this place. The duck is one of our favorite dishes, and they've got a nice wine list that features both American and Chinese wines.
Address: 1331 Ogden Avenue
While most Chicago pizzerias are trying to perfect their deep dish recipe, Aurelio's is focused on serving the most perfect thin crust in the world. They use just the right amount of sauce and cheese, and the toppings are always layered just perfectly for the right amount of flavor. Great appetizers such as calamari really round out the menu! We would highly recommend Aurelio's to you any time you are in the Downers Grove area.
Address: 940 Warren Avenue