Long Grove Village Tavern

When I was a young girl, my mom, sisters, sisters-in-law and I had a yearly tradition of making our way up from the south suburbs to Long Grove, a far northwest suburb with a charming little historic downtown shopping area. We would spend the day browsing the boutiques, having lunch, enjoying a treat at the creamery, shopping some more, visiting the Long Grove Confectionery for chocolate covered strawberries, shopping some more and end our day at the Village Tavern. We'd sit down - always a table near the fireplace - and we'd chat about our day and show each other what we bought.

The Village Tavern is the oldest continuously run restaurant/tavern in Illinois, which was established in a wagon shop in 1847. It's been under the current ownership since 1962. The centerpiece of the tavern area is a 35-foot long mahogany bar that survived the "Great McCormick Place Fire" in the 1960s and was relocated to the tavern. Another interesting piece is a grandfather clock that chimes each quarter-hour. It was one of only two made for the Columbian Exposition World's Fair in Chicago in 1893. The whereabouts of the second clock are unknown, so this is a very rare historical masterpiece.

The bar has been owned by just four families since its opening and it holds the longest continuously-held liquor license in the state and the first one in Long Grove. 

The dining room is filled with historic photographs and has a stage and the large brick fireplace that we always sat near as we enjoyed dinner together.

We decided on a bite to eat and I chose a famous bacon & cheese tavern burger freshly ground by Dorfler's Meats. It's pattied in the kitchen there and cooked to medium. It was quite an amazing burger - could definitely give any trendy city spot a run for their money.

Hubby got one of their locally-made bratwursts, grilled and served with sauerkraut on a pretzel roll. I snatched a bite and it definitely tasted very fresh and was so tender.

They still run a Friday Fry that has been a thing for at least half a century. They still use the same breading recipe from Grandma Didier (the family that purchased it just after World War II). In 1962, the fish fry was just $1.69. There's live music several nights a week and on Saturday you can enjoy the tavern famous prime rib. On Monday they have all-you-can-eat broasted chicken from 5 - 9 p.m.

The food was pretty delicious, but even if you aren't hungry but are in the area, it's worth a stop to sit down in this piece of history and enjoy a drink at the bar.

Village Tavern

135 Old McHenry Road
Long Grove, IL
(847) 634-3117