HOME > Chowhound > Chicago Area >


APS/Argonne Lab area recommendations??

I will be working at the Argonne National Laboratory for work next month. Does anyone have recommendations for places to eat or pick up food close by. This is near the 355 and 55 junction. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, anything would be appreciated, thanks chowhounders!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Ahh, nothing like a reply from almost 2000 miles away. Amazing, I have lived in SoCal for 20+ years now, but that area is still "home" to me.

    Breakfast...hands down the winner here is Blueberry Hill on Rt 83...one of the better breakfast places in the Chicago area. Downers Delight Pancake House on 75th St is also decent.

    Lunch...hmm, you need something pretty close by I imagine. I'm not an expert here but will query a friend of mine who works there and get back, but from the top of my head, Del Rhea's Chicken Basket has very good fried chicken and is a throwback kind of place. I think they have a lunch buffet as well. They are on a Frontage Road off Rt 83. The Patio on Rt 83 is a small chain and they have pretty decent ribs, burgers, sandwiches and more. And not too far from there on Plainfield (I think) is Culver's, another chain that specializes in "butter burgers" and other snadwiches (including a decent breaded pork tenderloin) along with their signature frozen custard.

    Dinner-wise the list gets longer so give me some more specifics. The area at 75th and Lemont has a ton of restaurants, possibly most notable Home Runn Inn, one of Chicago's great thin-crust pizza places. Also there is Cebu, a Euro-Asian cafe as they call it (I can't personally vouch for the place, only heard of a lot of good things). There's also a couple of popular Bohemian places nearby as well. Finally, if you are looking for decent BBQ, just S of downtown Westmont on Cass is Uncle Bub's.

    Hopefully that'll get you started.

    1. Just posted another plug for Uncle Bub's BBQ in Westmont- about three miles straight north on Cass Ave., which is the east boundary (more or less) of Argonne. You cross 55th Street, go over the small hill, and down toward downtown Westmont. It's on the left, and easy to spot. You can eat in or call ahead to pick up for takeout.

      You will not be disappointed.

      To get to Dell Rhea's - which does have really good chicken - just leave Argonne north on Cass, enter North (sort of) on I-55, then go north on Route 83, the next exit. First traffic light, turn right and right again onto the frontage road, and follow it around to DEll Rhea's. Only six or seven minutes from Argonne, unless I-55 is plugged up, in which case you don't get on I-55 but cross over and go east on that frontage road, which connects with the frontage road at Route 83.


      1. Will you by any chance be working with Chris Reilly, who is head of their environmental department?


        1. Nope, don't think so.
          I should have added that I have a vegetarian coworker, so places with veggies options are a plus.
          Thanks for the recommendations so far!
          RSMBob- we're coming from LA :) I'm not sure we're ready for the cold.

          1. I work about 3 miles from Argonne @ Route 83 & I-55. Argonne is located off of I-55 @ either the Lemont Road exit, or the Cass avenue exit. There are 2 entrances.

            I have 3 suggestions:

            Lao Sze Chuan
            1331 W. Ogden Avenue
            Downers Grove, IL.


            I go here for lunch, and I can make it there, eat, and get back within my 1 hour allotted time span for lunch. Good chinese food, with the vegetarian options you mentioned. Lunch specials as well.

            921 Pasquinelli


            Basically @ Route 83 and Ogden avenue a few miles northeast of where you are working. A bar happy hour until 6:00 with half price appetizers (crab cakes, blackened scallops, etc.). It is a seafood place that leans towards a cajun flair. I always get snow crab legs though, a hefty pound and a half for about $14. A decent place.for a chain

            Westmont Brat House
            18 N. Cass Avenue
            Westmont, IL.


            Downtown Westmont across the train tracks. An above average brat here, and a quick lunch spot. Not as good as the brats from up in Wisconsin, but a good attempt. Other sausages on the menu as well.

            Others mentioned Del Rheas Chicken Basket, I will second that . . Also Uncle Bubs for Ribs is one of the better authentic BBQ places in the area (chicago or suburbs..)

            Enjoy your visit, hopefully this gives you some additional ideas.

            Re: the cold, we are having another mild winter(temps in the mid 30's this past week.)... you know, global warming and all.. ;)

            1. I should have thought of Pappadeaux. It's an outpost of a Texas-based chain of high-quality theme restaurants. I've eaten in seven or eight in the Houston area and am amazed at their consistently high quality control. The Westmont Pappadeaux - their Cajun/seafood-themed restaurant - is great for anything they offer. Good fish dishes, calamari are great, their onion rings - best in the known universe - are crisp as glass. Sit at the bar and have a couple of appetizers and the Greek Salad. Terriffic lunch. Great raw bar, good selection of oysters.

              Take I-55 over to Route 83, north to Ogden Ave., west to second stoplight at Pasquinelli Drive, north till you see Pappadoux on the right. Should be about 15 minutes from Argonne, except at rush hour.


              1. Thanks for all these great places.
                Any recommendations for a grocery/market near by and also bakeries???

                1 Reply
                1. re: mwalton

                  You've got a number of great choices outside of the major chains. The best of them is probaby Westbrook Market at 63rd and Cass...huge, great selection of everyday and unique ethnic specialties, good deli, meat, produce and bakery. Other small markets are Ameci at 63rd and Fairview in DG and one on the N end of downtown Westmont on Cass at Maple/Washington/Chicago (whatever its called there). Also Brookhaven in Darien but I haven't been there in decades (hey, I live almost 2000 miles away!). A little further away is a little Polish market called Solty's on Ogden Ave.

                2. Ditto to all of the above suggestions. I'd like to add my new favorite: Oriental Taste at Rt. 83 and 63rd St. 630-789-3050. They have an extensive menu and I have been impressed with the great taste of their food! It's mostly carry out, but they have several tables for dining in. Excellent vegetable dishes, good spices. I particularly like that different "hot" dishes have different flavor...not just disguised with hot peppers.

                  I would also recommend the original Brookhaven Market at Plainfield and Cass Avenue. GREAT deli selection at unreal prices. don't even bother with the local chain stores. They also have a good selection of cooked foods, meats and fish.

                  1. If you are going up to Westmont to check out the recommendations above, you should also try Katy's Dumpling House, for handmade Chinese noodles. Lots of discussion here:


                    Katy's Dumpling House
                    665 N. Cass Ave.
                    Westmont, IL 60559
                    (630) 323-9393

                    Hours: 11am – 9pm
                    Closed Wednesdays
                    Cash only

                    By the way, Cebu, mentioned above, is a Filipino restaurant. Here's a link:


                    1. Check out Gondola. The address says Hinsdale but it's located in a strip mall on the west side of Route 83 just 5 minutes from Argonne. Look closely - it's a storefront that could be easily overlooked as it is squeezed in a corner. They have a pretty broad menu - mostly classic Italian dishes, well prepared, and several vegetarian options.