Oak Park, Illinois
Cook County is the home of Oak Park, conveniently located near Chicago, and a bustling city with a population of about fifty thousand. There are many businesses situated on Lake Street, and there are plenty of arts and culture related attractions including galleries, shops, restaurants, and schools. Oak Park is famous for being the place where Frank Lloyd Wright began his career. He spent the first two decades of it building homes in the area, which you can still see today. You'll want to check out Frank Lloyd Wright's home and studio, Ernest Hemingway's homes and museum, Edgar Rice Burrough's homes, and the Oak Park Conservatory. Many famous actors and musicians also call Oak Park home, including Ludacris, Bob Newhart, Betty White, Kathy Griffin, and Johnny Galecki. These are the best places to dine and drink in the 60301, 60302, 60303, and 60304 zip codes.
Hemmingway's Bistro is filled with charm and warmth. The friendly staff has been serving fine duck a l'orange, flounder grenobloise, and beef Wellington to happy customers since 2002. The cuisine is mostly French, but with many classic American favorites available too. It's true that it's a bit pricey, but this is one of the major destinations in the area, very popular and worth the extra bit of cash. The service is excellent and the food is divine. Highly recommended.
Address: 211 North Oak Park Avenue
AVENUE ALE HOUSE
Avenue Ale House is casual sophistication at its best. Our favorite part of this restaurant is its gorgeous outdoor dining area. There's an umbrella at every table to help you beat the heat in the sweltering summertime, and heaters to extend the outdoor dining season into the fall months when the chill starts to kick in. Did we mention it's on the roof? The bar fare is delicious here, and the service is excellent. Best place for dinner and drinks in the summer time!
Address: 825 South Oak Park Avenue
FLAT TOP GRILL
The Oak Park counterpart to the original Chicago location, Flat Top Grill is a restaurant in the same vein as BD's Mongolian Grill & Barbecue. You toss together your favorite ingredients, from chicken to seafood, from veggies to sauces, to those essential spices! And then they cook them up to perfection for you. Hearty appetites will appreciate the unlimited bowl for just a buck more. Delicious and so much fun for dates or group outings!
Address: 726 Lake Street
The most common comment from diners at Winberie's Restaurant is that it's got beautiful atmosphere and great service. We love the pastas here, and the Sunday brunch is an Oak Park essential. All your favorite contemporary American dishes are here. We love the pita chips with zesty artichoke dip, and the London broil is always an excellent choice. Family friendly, and fun for groups too!
Address: 151 North Oak Park Avenue
Cucina Paradiso of course translates to Paradise Kitchen if you understand the beautiful Italian language, and there's no question why that name was chosen! They bring the sophistication of Chicago into the suburb of Oak Park. They've been in business since 1995, and their modern takes on Italian favorites are what keep us coming back for more. The bacon wrapped dates are truly unusual and you've got to taste them to understand how amazing they really are. Though it's upscale and sophisticated, they're welcoming to families, and of course this is the perfect setting for that big date you've got coming up too.
Address: 814 North Boulevard
POOR PHIL'S SHELL BAR
Poor Phil's Shell Bar is the best place to go for great burgers and delicious seafood! The bar's got the vibe of a great Irish pub with a seaside twist. The brunch on the weekends is fabulous, and the nightly three dollar pints are an incredible bonus. It's casual and comfortable here. Curiously unpretentious in the midst of so many other places that just try too hard!
Address: 139 South Marion Street
PETERSEN'S ICE CREAM
Not quite a restaurant and not quite a bar, but it made our list anyway! They're in a newly remodeled location on the corner of Chicago Avenue and Marion, and all your favorites are still there... creamy hot fudge sundaes, healthy frozen yogurts, and single and double scoops of the best ice cream in the state. Petersen's has been around since 1919 because of their excellent service and high quality ingredients, and they show no signs of slowing down or stopping any time soon!
Address: 1100 W. Chicago Ave
MAYA DEL SOL
When you're craving Mexican food in the Oak Park area, Maya del Sol is the only name you need to know. It's not just Mexican here either--the menu actually spans the globe from South America to Central America, from Cuba to Brazil. All your Latin favorites are here, from drinks like the Cuba Libre and Mojito, to delicious meals like fish tacos. Seating on the patio is fantastic, but it's first come first serve (even if you have a reservation). We love the Latin American beer selection here.
Address: 144 South Oak Park Avenue
Bar Louie is one of those Chicago area essentials that seems to have been here forever. This location has really only been around since 2007, but we can't imagine life in Oak Park without it! It's not one of those uppity pretentious bars... it's just a great relaxing place to kick back and enjoy some drinks and great bar fare. The two buck burgers on Tuesdays are awesome. Great service, and nice decor. Highly recommended.
Address: 1122 Lake Street
Sushi House is by far the best sushi restaurant in the Oak Park area. They've got live music downstairs in the Dragon Lounge, which really adds a new dimension to your dining experience. We'd highly recommend the Chicago Fire roll, and the seaweed salad is a nice choice to cool down your palate afterward! Very authentic to Japanese traditions, with fabulous decor and a very inviting atmosphere. We can't decide what we like better--the sushi itself or the surroundings!
Address: 1107 Lake Street