The inaugural Blues Brothers Con, set on the grounds of the historic Old Joliet Prison, runs through Saturday, Aug. 20. A fitting location for the festival, the former correctional center turned restored historic site is prominently featured in the classic film “The Blues Brothers,” and is conveniently near The First Hundred Miles of Route 66.
After the festivities, you can rest and refuel at one of the many delicious independent restaurants along the route in Joliet. You’ll find well over 100 eateries, taquerias, microbreweries and diners, making Joliet the ideal place to savor a meal after the con. Here’s a list of favorite local spots sure to please all die-hard foodies, fans of local cuisine and craft beverage lovers visiting Joliet and The First Hundred Miles.
Cut 158 Chophouse
158 N. Chicago St., Joliet
The trendy steakhouse, set just off Route 66 in the heart of downtown Joliet, is your ideal destination for a high-end meal and craft cocktails. Cut 158′s menu is packed with high-quality beef, seafood and veggie offerings, alongside an expansive selection of craft beers, house wines and whisky. Dress is business casual. Looking for something a little more casual? Pay a visit to Cut 158′s sister restaurant, the nearby Juliet’s Tavern (205 N. Chicago St). This newly revamped restaurant pairs an amazing New American menu with a cozy 19th century tavern setting.
1321 Route 59, Joliet
Friaco’s Mexican Restaurant serves up authentic Mexican dishes in a fun and relaxing atmosphere. There are specials happening throughout the week, such as kids eat free on Mondays, half-priced margaritas on Tuesdays, and $2 bottled beer on Sundays.
1990 W. Jefferson St., Joliet
This upscale American restaurant, one of the oldest in the city, is famed for the classic charbroiled steaks and a variety of fresh seafood. Al’s is a top destination for mouthwatering Grecian-style cuts of steak, made exclusively with Angus beef and served with a double-baked potato. Don’t miss Al’s generous salad bar and local favorite Sunday brunch.
Jitters Coffee House
178 N. Chicago St., Joliet
The independently owned coffee shop is the perfect place to pull up a chair and start planning your trip along The First Hundred Miles, or just to relax and recharge before you explore the rest of the beautiful downtown district. Housed inside a historic storefront, Jitters serves up a variety of breakfast and lunch delicacies, including pastries, fresh sandwiches and some delicious desserts, along with its selection of fresh-brewed coffees and smoothies.
MyGrain Brewing Co.
50 E. Jefferson St., Suite 106, Joliet
Not just a destination for great locally made craft beers, this brew pub also cooks up some signature burgers, steaks, wings, tacos and special weekly brunches. It is nestled in the heart of Joliet’s historic downtown, directly inside the Joliet Union train station, where you’ll be just as struck by MyGrain’s taproom ambiance as the ever-growing line of house beers and elevated bar fare.
310 Bridge St., Joliet
Once the headquarters for the Joliet Catholic Diocese, and before that the estate of a German brewmaster, the striking limestone castle now hosts wine tastings and other special events. During extensive restorations, much of the original on-site brewery was discovered and painstakingly restored with reclaimed materials. The grotto-like structure houses Bishops Hill’s processing equipment, tanks and barrel-aging rooms. To reserve your own private tasting, head to bishopshill.com/booking-form.