Local

Dining

Posted: March 19, 2012

General Dining

  • Bacaro Elegant, upscale restaurant in downtown Champaign. All of the fare is made from local, high-end, quality ingredients. A must for special occasions.
  • Biaggi’s Family-friendly restaurant with a wide-selection of Italian food
  • Bombay Grill Quick and tasty Indian food in Campustown, and a new fine dining location on 1st Street.
  • Escobar’s Latin fusion cuisine in downtown Champaign.
  • Farren’s Neighborhood bar and pub, but with a really original, eclectic menu. Good home-ground burgers (including kobe), great salads. Right around the corner from Volition.
  • The Great Impasta Restaurant in Urbana’s Lincoln Square featuring fine Northern Italian food and Italian-American nouveau cuisine.
  • Radio Maria Fantastic fusion cuisine. Unique restaurant, a local favorite. Recently expanded to add a tapas bar.
  • The Seaboat Hands down, the best fish & chicken sandwiches!  Don’t miss the home-made mac & cheese, either

 

Asian

  • Kamakura Japanese and sushi bar in Champaign. Great lunch specials.
  • Ko-Fusion Offers an inspired mix of French, Italian, American and sushi. Located in the 1 Main building below the Volition offices
  • Nitaya Thai Voted the best Thai cuisine in Champaign by the locals
  • Sushi Kame Amazing bento boxes for both lunch and dinner. Also serves up great sushi, sake, and miso soup. Pleasant decor, ambience, and service.
  • Yellowfin Authentic Japanese-Korean restaurant with a vast selection of beers and sake. Beautifully presented sushi.

 

Bars / Breweries

  • Black Dog Smoke and Ale House This bbq joint in Urbana is pretty small and always busy because of their perfect mix of brews and house smoked beef brisket, pulled pork, yams, and other house-made sides
  • The Clark Bar  Serving tapas and drinks at great prices. Rib Night on Wednesdays and Fridays – possibly the best ribs in town! Great local gem downtown with a unique atmosphere and a large outdoor patio.
  • Destihl Microbrewery located across the street from Volition that focuses on serving creative dishes made with local, seasonal ingredients.
  • Dublin O’Neil’s An Irish pub with great burgers, homemade fries, and beer in the heart of campustown.
  • The Blind Pig An English style bar, with an excellent beer selection on tap.  The “Little Pig” is a microbrewery located a block away from the main bar.

 

Bistro / Cafe

  • Aroma Cafe An unpretentious place to settle in with your laptop (free wifi) and latte. A block away from the studio allows for a great coffee break walk.
  • The Bread Company Fresh bread made daily by in-house bakers, featuring delicious fondue, salads and pizzas located in Urbana.
  • Cafe Kopi An espresso bar with monthly exhibits by local artists, fresh veggie juice and smoothies, and light lunch fare. The ice water steeped with oranges or cucumbers is always fresh and free.
  • Cafe Luna A small American-European restaurant with a large wine list and tapas selection, as well as salads and entrees. Luna is vegetarian-friendly and uses fresh, local ingredients.
  • Cafe Paradiso A warm, intimate Urbana cafe that serves sandwiches on fresh bread, salads, and other assorted fresh foods alongside their coffee drinks. Full of character, free wifi, live music, and local art.
  • Carmon’s Traditional French bistro in Downtown Champaign.
  • Pekara A bistro and bakery in downtown Champaign. Great sandwiches, breads, and pastries.

 

BBQ / Steakhouse

  • The Beef House (Covington, IN) Steaks cooked over hardwood briquets on our open hearth charcoal broiler. In sight before, during, and after cooking.

 

Mexican

  • Dos Reales Casual restaurant with all the best in Mexican fare, including the best margaritas in town.
  • El Toro Three locations throughout C-U, including a fourth location just outside of town.  Always a crowd but it moves fast. Great food, friendly staff.

 

Pizza

  • Papa Del’s Pizza Authentic Chicago deep dish pizza. Independently owned with two locations.
  • Jupiter’s Two locations in Champaign with an excellent variety of thin crust pizzas.  The second location (Jupiters 2) has arcade style games for kids of all ages.

 

Vegetarian / Vegan

  • Red Herring A vegan restaurant located on campus, open for lunch on weekdays. Good food, bohemian atmosphere.

 

Desserts

  • Cream and Flutter Downtown Champaign’s very own cupcake shop also including cakes, candies, coffee, and cocktails.
  • Jarling’s Custard Cup A Champaign tradition, and a hotspot on any summer day or night. Serving up amazing custard concoctions.