Salmonella outbreak linked to El Sombrero restaurant in Fox River Grove

The restaurant has closed voluntarily and is cooperating with McHenry County health officials

El Sombrero, a restaurant in Fox River Grove, voluntarily closed for the time being after a salmonella outbreak was identified there.

The business at 314 Lincoln Ave. is cooperating with health officials, the McHenry County Department of Health said in a news release sent Friday afternoon.

Anyone who ate at El Sombrero from Aug. 23 through Sept. 3 is being asked to complete an online survey to assist the health department in collecting data to conduct “a comprehensive investigation of this illness outbreak to eliminate the public health risk,” according to the release.

The health department is asking people to take this survey regardless of whether they developed symptoms after eating at El Sombrero.

“The survey is a secure webform that is HIPAA compliant,” the McHenry County health department said in the release. “[N]o personal and/or medical information will be released.”

Those who ate food prepared at the restaurant should seek medical attention if they do experience symptoms, according to the release. The release did not indicate the number of people affected by the outbreak.

“The outbreak investigation is ongoing and we are attempting to identify all cases linked to this establishment,” health department spokeswoman Lindsey Salvatelli said in an email.

An El Sombrero employee or owner was not able to be reached at the number listed online for the establishment.

Salmonella is a food-borne bacterium that cannot be detected by sight, taste or smell, according to the health department. It can result in nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramping, chills, fever or blood in the stool, with symptoms usually starting anywhere within six hours to six days after infection. Salmonella-related illnesses typically last four to seven days, with most individuals recovering on their own in three to five.

However, the children, elderly and those with compromised immune systems are more at risk for a severe infection, according to the release.

Those with questions or who are unable to access the survey can call 815-334-4500.


Cassie Buchman

Cassie Buchman

I cover Crystal Lake, Algonquin, Cary, Fox River Grove, Prairie Grove and Oakwood Hills for the Northwest Herald.