I'm heading home for the holidays, and will now be centering my activities further south than in previous years. Any good recs in the swath from about Crown Point westward to the Momence area would be welcome - C.P., St. John, Cedar Lake, Crete, Beecher, Steger, Momence, Richton Park, etc. Or put another way, center on roughly Balmoral Park racetrack (to pick a convenient landmark), and anything worth trying that's 15-20 miles in any direction would be of interest. If you have other finds further out, that you'd consider "worth the drive" please share those, too! I'm more familiar with what's on the northern end of the range, so recs to the east, west and south would be of particular interest.
I'd be interested in good ethnic cuisine, but Mom's pretty averse to spicy or unusual food,so "traditional" or "general American" places probably are of most utility. Even so, as long as it's good, please post, and I'll do my best to sort out which ones might be "Mom-friendly" and which ones I ought to check out on my own.
Thanks!, and thanks as well from Mama Warthog, who I'll likely be taking to some of the places you suggest.