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Getaway Guide: One-Tank Trip To Long Grove

Long Grove
Downtown Long Grove (Credit: Kenneth Johnson)

By Kenneth Johnson

Nestled in the suburban sprawl north of Lake Cook Road, the Village of Long Grove and its historic district provide a bit of rural feel and lots of open space. The shops, galleries and restaurants are all housed in buildings from the 1880s, connected by cobblestone walkways. Walking is the best way to see the historic village since all buildings are around the intersection of Old McHenry Road and Robert Parker Coffin Road.

Getting There

The Long Grove historic village is in southern Lake County near the intersections of Route 52 and Route 83. From Chicago, take I-94 or I-294 to Lake Cook Road and go west. Turn right (north) on Route 83 and continue to old Route 53. Turn left on old Route 53, then make a quick right turn at the light, which is Old McHenry Road. The village is about half a mile down the road and will round out at about an hour's drive.

By Metra, take the North Central Service (weekdays only) to Buffalo Grove, then hop in a cab for the four miles to Long Grove. On weekends, the Metra option is the Union Pacific Northwest line to Barrington, then take a cab for nine miles to Long Grove.

Long Grove

What To Do


Long Grove is well known for its festivals held in the historic village. The festivals feature food specials, live music, demonstrations, workshops, wine parings and plenty of kids' activities, bringing in thousands of attendees. The granddaddy of festivals is the Strawberry Fest due in large part to the pie eating contest. Enjoy the Annual Chocolate Fest during the first weekend in May or the Annual Strawberry Fest in late June. If planning a trip in the fall, come out for the Annual Apple Fest in late September or celebrate Oktoberfest during mid-October.

Long Grove Confectionery
(Credit: Long Grove Confectionery's facebook)

Long Grove Confectionery Company
220 Robert Parker Coffin Road
Long Grove, IL 60047
(847) 634-0080

If you've heard of Long Grove before, you probably associate it with chocolate. Long Grove Confectionery features all manners of chocolate from fresh chocolate-dipped strawberries to chocolate bunnies to dark chocolate ice cream bars. You can also pick up some wonderful nostalgic candies like Fizzies.

Related: Getaway Guide: One-Tank Trip to Kenosha, WI

Long Grove Confectionery Co. Chocolate Factory Tour
333 Lexington Drive
Buffalo Grove, IL 60089
(888) 459-3100

If you want to see how the chocolate is made, take the Long Grove Confectionery Factory Tour in nearby Buffalo Grove. The chocolates are hand made using fresh ingredients and no preservatives. After the one-hour tour, shop the factory outlet store and take some treats home with you. Tour reservations are required.

Olive Tap
The Olive Tap (Credit: Kenneth Johnson)

Where To Shop

The Olive Tap
240 Robert Parker Coffin Road
Long Grove, IL 60047
(847) 642-5472

Housed upstairs in the 1897 Creamery building, The Olive Tap is close to heaven for any cook. You can sample a huge selection of olive oils, balsamic vinegars of Modena, Italy, dark barrel-aged balsamic vinegars, other specialty oils and vinegars. When you've made your selection, your bottle will be filled from the same sealed serving tank so what you've tasted is what you'll take home. Looking for more? Step into The Olive Tap's temperature-controlled Spice Locker for over 100 spices, herbs, seasonings, sea salts, peppers and rubs.

Trillium Long Grove
The Artistic Gardener (Credit: Kenneth Johnson)

Trillium Long Grove
248 Robert Parker Coffin Road
Long Grove, IL 60047
(847) 883-8867

Make a stop at the Trillium and find decor pieces ranging from table-top items to unique lamps. Walk away with a vintage clock to hang in the living room. The Artistic Gardener is just next door and features a whimsical garden of fountains, resting spots and garden art. Inside the store, you'll find more ornaments and fixtures for your yard, as well as garden and nature-inspired artwork for your home.

Long Grove Cafe
Long Grove Cafe (Credit: Kenneth Johnson)

Where To Eat

Long Grove Café
235 Robert Parker Coffin Road
Long Grove, IL 60047
(847) 955-9600

If you're tired from your walk around Long Grove, this is the perfect spot to relax. Overlooking Mill Pond with its fountain and family of ducks, the Long Grove Café offers serene views from its outdoor deck and glass-walled interior. The décor also features exposed brick walls and a vaulted ceiling. Open for lunch, dinner and breakfast on weekends, this is a great spot for all tastes.

Cedar Grill
Cedar Grill (Credit: Kenneth Johnson)

Cedar Grill
330 Old McHenry Road
Long Grove, IL 60047
(847) 383-5511

It may look like a barn on the outside, but venture inside for fine dining and a well-stocked bar. The bar is on the first floor, stocked with Belgian and U.S. craft beers on tap, Macallan single-malt scotch and Hudson bourbon whiskeys. Walk upstairs to the restaurant that specializes in contemporary American cuisine with delicious steaks and seafood. All seafood is Safe Harbor certified to be free of pathogens, histamine and mercury.

Related: Getaway Guru: Weekend Guide to New Buffalo, MI

Kenneth Johnson is a freelance writer covering all things Chicago. His work can be found on

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