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Good Eating Outside of Theme Parks


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For a great hearty breakfast, I reccomend The Point Pankcake House in Gurnee, IL. It's located on the corner of routes 41 and 21 which is less than 5 minutes from the park and is only open from 6am to 3pm. They're known for the pancakes (hence why it's a pancake house). If you order any of the baked pancakes, expect to wait about 45 minutes for them to cook. You can call ahead to order that if you'd like. However, anything on their breakfast menu is amazing. I highly reccoment the red velvet stuffed french toast and the banana foster pancakes. Since The Point does not have a website, I'm linking the reviews from Yelp. The Point Pancake House

 

Timothy O'Tooles Timothy O'Tooles has a location in Chicago and opened a location in Gurnee within the last couple of years. If you're in the mood for a beer, good food and don't have a lot of time or want to drive far away, this is the place to go. It's one stop light over from Great America, so you can't miss it at all.

Edited by Jojo19799
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Canada's Wonderland:

Lunch/Dinner

Lick's Burger Boutique is located just across the parking lot on Jane St. It's a local chain with a few locations in Ontario.

Everything is made on the grill when you order and their burgers are a pretty good size. Whatever you order, make sure to get Guk sauce on it. I'd also suggest getting Taters'n'Cream on the side (Fries smothered in sour cream, bacon bits, cheese, and chives).

Edited by cfc
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Chuck, thanks again for starting this thread. Maybe I can hit up the suggested eateries near Valleyfair when I'm there next month. I'd like to add a few more places that are near SFGAm in Gurnee.

 

Salutos About a 5 minute drive down Grand Ave is an Italian place called Salutos. They make everything there! Pasta, pizza, sandwiches, salads, soups and we can't forget about desserts! A kids menu is also available which probably consists of kid size portions of pizza, pasta and other stuff. And yes, there is a bar available.

 

The Shanty The Shanty is located on Highway 41 and Wadworth Rd. It is a 10 minute drive from the park. This place has been featured on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives and I will vouch for it. It's one of the best restaurants in the area where everything is made fresh, and the fish is brought is fresh daily as well. I highly suggest the Whiskey River Shrimp. You can get it as an appetizer or as a meal. They do have a full bar and feature specials each day.

 

Captain Porky's Since I mentioned The Shanty, I might as well mention Captain Porky's. It's literally next door to The Shanty, and both places are owned by the same family. Captain Porky's is basically a fish and BBQ place. The fish is brought in fresh everyday, and of course everything is made fresh each day, especially the smoked salmon which I can smell driving by there when the windows to the car are up! Yep, it's that good! They do have some seating inside, but it's mostly take out and feature daily specials.

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There's a Black Bear Diner in Vallejo that makes for a great breakfast stop before enjoying a day at SFDK. I'm not sure if it meets the criteria of the thread as a regional chain because they seem to be growing pretty fast, but the majority of their locations are in the western states, with most of those being in California. They started out in Mt. Shasta city. Eveything they serve is awesome, but especially the breakfasts.

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Canada's Wonderland: Vinnie Zucchini's is an italian buffet located by Vaughan Mills on Rutherford rd. Their pricing is about the same as Marketplace Buffet in CW, but the food is 100 times better. I'm italian and this food is almost as good as my family's cooking It's the best restaurant within walking distance from the front entrance of CW

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There's a Black Bear Diner in Vallejo that makes for a great breakfast stop before enjoying a day at SFDK. I'm not sure if it meets the criteria of the thread as a regional chain because they seem to be growing pretty fast, but the majority of their locations are in the western states, with most of those being in California. They started out in Mt. Shasta city. Eveything they serve is awesome, but especially the breakfasts.

 

Black Bear Diner is really good! We have one in Reno and we're actually going there tomorrow!

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  • 5 weeks later...

I just wanted to send in a success story for this thread. I went to Cedar Point for two days this past week with three friends, and I used this thread for food suggestions. We went to Berardi's for breakfast both days (the cinnamon bread was AMAZING), Sortino's, Cameo Pizza, and The Thirsty Pony (one of my friends said the Thirsty Bam burger there was the best burger he ever had). So, the system works!

 

Some suggestions of my own:

 

Kennywood: If you're in the Pittsburgh area, you better get yourself to a PRIMANTI BROS. Their specialty is ginormous sandwiches with all the sides inside two thick slices of Italian bread, with provolone, coleslaw, tomato and french fries inside; only the meat changes (plus you can get double meat if you're especially hungry). I recommend the pastrami, but everything is good.

 

Six Flags Great America: If you're a fan of breakfast, stop at a WALKER BROTHERS PANCAKE HOUSE. They're all in the northern suburbs, so if you're in or near Chicago you'll be near all six of them to get to Great America. They do a really great breakfast, and it's a small touch, but their orange juice is fresh-squeezed, which makes my taste buds very happy.

 

Cedar Point...ish?: Okay, this isn't really near the park, but, if you're going to Cedar Point and home for you is anywhere east of Cleveland, I thoroughly recommend MELT BAR & GRILLED. There are four locations around Cleveland, they're all about an hour's drive from CP, and it's absolutely worth it. They do grilled cheeses like you wouldn't believe, and they're HUGE and DELICIOUS. Two personal favorites are the West Side Monte Cristo (honey ham, smoked turkey, swiss, american, crispy battered & deep fried, mixed berry preserves on the side which go amazingly well with it), and The Dude Abides (homemade meatballs, fried mozzarella cheese sticks, marinara sauce, provolone & romano).

 

Six Flags Great Adventure: This is going to sound kind of dumb, but there's a WAWA on Monmouth Road just as you get off 195, like 2 minutes from the park. For those not in the know, Wawa is a super sweet convenience store with touch screens where you can order sandwiches and other stuff freshly made. Plus if you go there in the morning you can get freshly made breakfast hoagies or ready-made sandwiches. It's pretty inexpensive and the food's pretty tasty. Plus there's a gas station. Plus it's open 24 hours. Plus Wawa is wonderful.

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Some suggestions of my own:

 

Kennywood: If you're in the Pittsburgh area, you better get yourself to a PRIMANTI BROS. Their specialty is ginormous sandwiches with all the sides inside two thick slices of Italian bread, with provolone, coleslaw, tomato and french fries inside; only the meat changes (plus you can get double meat if you're especially hungry). I recommend the pastrami, but everything is good.

 

Thanks for the tip! We'll definitely try to check that out!

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Some suggestions of my own:

 

Kennywood: If you're in the Pittsburgh area, you better get yourself to a PRIMANTI BROS. Their specialty is ginormous sandwiches with all the sides inside two thick slices of Italian bread, with provolone, coleslaw, tomato and french fries inside; only the meat changes (plus you can get double meat if you're especially hungry). I recommend the pastrami, but everything is good.

 

Thanks for the tip! We'll definitely try to check that out!

 

And when you're in the park, don't forget to go to the Potato Patch. They make all their potatoey products right there, including cheesy bacon fries *drool*

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Some suggestions of my own:

 

Kennywood: If you're in the Pittsburgh area, you better get yourself to a PRIMANTI BROS. Their specialty is ginormous sandwiches with all the sides inside two thick slices of Italian bread, with provolone, coleslaw, tomato and french fries inside; only the meat changes (plus you can get double meat if you're especially hungry). I recommend the pastrami, but everything is good.

 

Thanks for the tip! We'll definitely try to check that out!

 

And when you're in the park, don't forget to go to the Potato Patch. They make all their potatoey products right there, including cheesy bacon fries *drool*

 

Thank you!

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  • 2 weeks later...

When I left SFNE yesterday I tried a place in Springfield about a 10 minute drive from the park. The name of the place was Salsa's. They serve Salvadoran and Mexican food.

 

I little "hole in the wall" that serves up great flavor.

 

The menu is completely in Spanish, Univision was on the TV and all the patrons appeared to be blue collar Hispanics, but the server spoke English. At least I knew was getting authentic food. Here they are on Yelp!

 

I ordered a Pork and Cheese Papusa Combo. Shredded Pork and cheese are encased in a dough with finely chooped peppers and onions (I did not even notice the texture of the veggies). The combo included frijoles (excellent) and rice with rice (average) and double fried plantains (excellent). I've never had a Papusa before so I can't compare it to others but it was very good, it would have been better if I ate quicker as the Papusa is best eaten right away. Now those that know me realize I don't eat veggies or fruits, and I won't even eat banana flavored candy. I despise banana. So you might be saying how did you eat a fried plantain. Very easily, the carmelization completely took away the banana flavor.

 

Lastly, in honor of Derek and all taco lovers, I had to get a taco. I didn't real need one since the papusas were so filling, but I ordered a carne asada taco. Perfectly seasoned meat, but too much onion and cilantro. The cilantro overpowered the meat. But I'll know better next time to have the cilantro and onion on the side.

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Very unassuming

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Even if the curtains are closed, the place will be open if you see the illuminated OPEN sign.

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I lied, there was one other gringo in the place, but he did a takeout order.

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Very plain interior, save money on decorations and give me great food. I'm fine with that.

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I asked them to hold the avocado but they gave it to me anyway. The papusas are the doughy circular things on the left. This plate was $10.

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Carne asada taco, $2

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I almost joined the clean plate club, but left some veggies.

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Afterwards I drove a couple of miles down the road to Longmeadow for desert at Donut Dip.

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My sources suggested either the sour creme or the Apple Cider variety. Neither was anything to rave about, actually my local farmer's market has much bettter Apple Cider donuts.

Edited by larrygator
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Near USH -

 

Just north of USH, on Lankershim Blvd. - check out The Federal Bar - really good burgers and excellent choice of beers - plus they have "beer floats" - vanilla ice cream and ole Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout. If you don't want to drive, just hop on the Red Line Subway at Universal Station, and head one station north to North Hollywood Station. This puts you in the North Hollywood Arts District, and there are a ton of places to eat and drink, and even see some art.

 

Also within a couple blocks south of the North Hollywood Red Line station - Philadelphia Sandwiches - Best Philly cheese steak sandwich I've had outside of Pat's King of Steaks.

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Cedar Point...ish?: Okay, this isn't really near the park, but, if you're going to Cedar Point and home for you is anywhere east of Cleveland, I thoroughly recommend MELT BAR & GRILLED. There are four locations around Cleveland, they're all about an hour's drive from CP, and it's absolutely worth it.

 

I would be remiss if I didn't wholeheartedly "second" this. Melt is a great, quirky place. Always PACKED, too. The easiest one to get to is probably the Lakewood location (14718 Detroit Ave. Lakewood, OH 44107), which is essentially a straight shot down I-90/OH-2. I could list countless fantastic restaurants in Cleveland, but seeing as they're generally too far away for grabbing a quick bite after a day at Cedar Point, I'll just keep them to myself .

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  • 1 month later...

I was recently at Hershey Park and found a gem of a restaurant nearby. It's probably about 7 minutes away from the park and has some very tasty pizza. It is small and it was hard to find some parking but it was delicious.

 

Palermo's Pizza

103 E. Main St.

Hummelstown, PA 17036

 

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^Funny you should mention that. I was just at Palermo's and will second the recommendation! Would it be too much to say I even miss it a little? Maybe I am just missing Hersheypark and the whole trip.

 

This is not your typical pizza if you're used to chains!

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After a day at KI, check out Blue Ash Chili on Western Row. Famous for the "Cincinnati Chili" style with 3,4,5 and 6 ways. Also have a lot of really good sandwiches. If you're really hungry try the double decker with your choice of meats and cheeses. Great place to eat!! Head south on Kings Island Drive, take a right on Western Row, and will be on your right after you go under 71 in a little shopping center with a Donatos and Penn Station. Also, for a little further drive, check out Marion's Pizza a little down 71 on Mason-Montgomery Rd. Awesome pizza!!

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