Casual Date Night in the Chicago Suburbs
Ribs and a chocolate chip cookie sundae…the makings of a near perfect night out with my husband. I didn’t even care that it was raining that night…we had a sitter and dinner reservations! We headed over to Valley Lodge Tavern in St. Charles. Already a fan of the downtown St. Charles area, we were excited to have a night out to catch up on things and laugh.
As always on a Friday Night, downtown St. Charles was packed, although we were able to find parking in the public garage, we had to park on the 3rd floor and walk down a few flights of stairs…the garage is located right behind the restaurant and connected by a courtyard. After exiting the garage you’ll see the back of the restaurant and some outdoor seating, although there is a door, I’m not sure if you can enter through the rear of the restaurant. You can definitely exit there though, we did at the end of our dinner. Valley Lodge Tavern opened earlier this year (2015), the owner, Bill Stavrou decided to expand upon the already popular North Shore brand of restaurants that have been operating since 1969.
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On to the food. Ribs, yes Mama got herself some BBQ, I don’t get to have it often at restaurants because my husband thinks that he knows everything about good BBQ so when I get a hankering he pulls out the grill at home. Lately he has been traveling for work, so I haven’t had my fix, enter Valley Lodge Tavern to help me out.
What we ordered:
Crispy Tavern Shrimp
Baby Back Ribs – Full Slab
Marinated Skirt Steak
Chocolate Chip Cookie Sundae
Everything we had was delicious, my favorite were the Ribs, super tender, fall off the bone, light smokiness, with a bit of a sweet bbq glaze. My husband enjoyed his Entree but his favorite thing was the Crispy Tavern Shrimp, battered and fried golden brown, with a killer Sriracha aioli that was good, tangy, spicy, and sweet. He mentioned that he could’ve had that in an entree sized portion because it was perfect…that’s coming from someone that usually prefers seafood over red meat anyway.
The service was equally as delicious as the food, our server Stacie made great suggestions, like the off-menu black opal cocktail and the shrimp that she suggested for our appetizer. We were also greeted as soon as we walked in by the manager Q, who happened to be coming down the stairs as we entered. As you enter the Valley Lodge Tavern, you’ll notice a long flight of stairs just ahead of you, leading to an area upstairs where they happened to be hosting a private party.
It was crazy packed on the Friday night that we went, but service was still timely, foods were the right temperature, and the dining room had a great buzz. We will be going back again on a future date night, I have to try the Cajun Linguine.