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Is there nothing in Elgin???

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Just did a search and zippo comes up for Elgin. We'll be in Elgin on Friday and thought we'd get some dinner either in the downtown area or as we head back in to Chicago. Maybe we'll have to stop somewhere around Woodfield if we can't find anything in the area. I'd prefer to avoid chains if possible but am open to any and all suggestions. I'm game, as long as it's tasty.
Thanks.

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  1. I had a nice lunch a few weeks ago at Azteca de Oro. It's an unassuming Mexican restaurant on National street. Chips and table salsa where quite good and fiery. I had a huarache with steak which was quite nice. In the middle of the restaruant is a station in which fresh masa is pressed for both tortillas and other things like sopes, huaraches, etc. There were some interesting soups on the menu as well such as carne en su jugo (skirt steak, beef broth, bacon, beans, radishes, etc), caldo de res, menudo, pozole, and seafood soup. The place is not fancy, but it's not a dump either.

    Azteca DE Oro Restaurant
    262 National St
    (847) 742-0859
    Elgin, IL 60120

    1. Cafe Magdalena in downtown Elign is very good Italian in a neat old building. Good pastas and lamb chops. Prairie Rock Brewing Company is also downtown in the old Grove movie theater building, neat setting, good steaks and such. My partner is vegetarian and both places had good things to make eveyone happy. If you are interested in more diner like fare, we have always had a good meal at Alexander's which is at the Rte. 31 and I-90 exit. They serve breakfast through dinner and it's always been a go to spot for work lunches and breakfast meetings.

      Cafe Magdelana
      13 Douglas Ave.
      Elgin
      847-742-2270

      Prairie Rock Brewing Company
      127 S. Grove
      Elgin
      847-622-8888

      Alexander's
      1725 North State Street (Rte. 31)
      Elgin
      847-888-4146

      3 Replies
      1. re: LikestoEatout

        And for an even more diner like experience try Paul's family restaurant-- on Maclean at Lawrence. Alexander's is fancy shmancy compared to Pauls. I've never had a bad meal there tho.

        1. re: LikestoEatout

          We tried Cafe Magdalena. We were one of three tables in the place on a Friday night. Salad was drenched in oil and vinegar (1/4-1/2" deep on bottom of bowl). Food was very average.

          1. re: LikestoEatout

            I was in Elgin about a month ago on a Friday night (6 pm or so) and Cafe Magdelana was closed - no sign up explaining why, just locked up and dark. That's not to say they're closed - but you may want to phone ahead.

            Prairie Rock isn't bad at all really.

            Akina's is a nice Thai place - I found their Pad Thai to be pretty lousy, but their stir fries and specials are pretty good.
            http://www.akinasthai.com/

            I frequently poke around boards to find suggestions in Elgin, but typically come up cold - there's plenty of new condo developments, maybe they will start attracting some interesting new places.

          2. The buffet at the casino boat is a lot better than you would normally expect in such an establishment. They have a good variety of food that is well prepared. The service leaves a lot to be desired as you have to get your own drinks yet the employees are looking for tips.

            I am not sure that the restaurant below is still open but they served pretty German and Austrian foods a couple of years ago. However, their chef/owner died a few years ago and the widow was trying to keep the place open.

            Gasthaus Zur Linde
            15 North Grove Ave
            Elgin, IL 60120
            (847) 695-8828