Oak Brook, Illinois is mostly seen as a business hub in the western suburbs of Chicago, Illinois, but there’s more to Oak Brook than suits, desks and deadlines. Oak Brook is also home to fine shops and restaurants and caters to many people every day of the week. There are plenty of reasons to go down Interstate 88 and getting off right after the toll to the 22nd Street exit but I want to mention one place in particular that I’ve been to for a couple of special occasions now… the Cheesecake Factory.
I’ll be honest in saying that the Cheesecake Factory hasn’t always been a place on my hit list of restaurants to eat it for any occasion. I used to just go for the cheesecake and you’d probably see me there about once or twice a year. Now I probably go at least one special occasion a year, maybe two, depending on who’s selecting the venue. I recommend going there for a few reasons:
Cheesecake Factory has in the last few years expanded their menu to have some wonderful items. For appetizers I recommend the Road Side Sliders, Tex Mex Eggrolls, Thai Lettuce Wraps, and the Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes. For entrees I recommend the Carne Asada Skirt Steak, Jamaican Black Pepper Shrimp, or any of the pasta dishes. I haven’t had them all, but I love the choices. Of course you can get salads, soup, sandwiches, etc. There are over 200 menu items to choose from, so you should be able to find at least five or six things you want to try… maybe even all at the same time.
I love the décor of the Oak Brook location. It’s the one I’m most familiar with because it’s the one I go to the most. It looks like you’re entering a castle of sorts and then you’re not disappointed on the inside either. The inside dining room is full of space and color combinations, fancy lighting, and amazing paintings. Even the bathrooms look great and usually men’s bathrooms are not a highlight of any dining experience… I should know. If you want to eat somewhere where you’ll actually enjoy the atmosphere of where you’re eating, go to Cheesecake Factory.
I remember one specific incident after a Mother’s Day outing I believe… my wife accidentally left her prenatal pills at the Cheesecake Factory. We got back home and it was about 9pm on Sunday evening when we realized that we probably left them there. We called the restaurant back and they identified it and we went over and picked it up that same night and they’d put it aside for us. We were very grateful that they went to those measures to do that for us. It may not sound extreme but if you’ve never bought pre-natal vitamins you don’t know what they can cost per bottle. A little bit of gas lost was worth not having to replace a bottle of vitamins.
That’s just one story. Usually the people who’ve given us service have always been friendly and patient and willing to accommodate requests. If an order has gone wrong they’ll either fix it, give you a credit, or both. My wife is big on customer service so that always does my heart good to see people doing what they should be doing in that area.
Five words… Dulce de Leche Caramel Cheesecake.
Five more words… Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake.
Two words… Pumpkin Cheesecake.
Now four words… Fresh Banana Cream Cheesecake.
The last three words… Fresh Strawberry Cheesecake.
Add whipped cream to any of these and you have a meal you can eat off of at least twice.
One of the reasons I recommend the Cheesecake Factory in Oak Brook and not the one downtown is parking availability and easy access. The one located in Chicago’s downtown area requires you to pay for parking or take public transportation in order to get there.
I recommend going here for that next holiday or special occasion because it’s one of the places I’ve been to that seems to be able to handle a big crowd of people and still be effective. In some places people rush and/or mess up orders and/or not have a good system in place. The Cheesecake Factory in Oak Brook doesn’t seem to follow that model. They seem to know what they’re doing and are able to respond to you in a timely manner.
Like any restaurant of that size and notoriety, call ahead and make reservations if you can. Expect a wait even if you are on time for your reservation… things can change. It also helps to have an idea of what you want to order before you get to the restaurant. The Cheesecake Factory has a website that you can look through to see their menu and locations; go to http://www.cheesecakefactory.com to find out more information.If you are in the Chicago area and want good food with a good atmosphere to match for your next celebration, special occasion, or holiday gathering… go to The Cheesecake Factory in Oak Brook, Illinois.