No matter what brings you to McHenry County, outdoor recreation, a cultural experience, shopping or something else, at some point you're going to need to stop for refreshment. And because this is McHenry County, your meal is sure to be one of the highlights. 
We have shared which restaurants are the best of the best, but we needed input from the locals to know what to order. Here are 13 local's top 5 restaurants and their go-to order at each.

Thank you to McHenry County Food Critic on Facebook for your help! 


Travis N. 

Duke’s Alehouse & Kitchen (Crystal Lake) – Burgers & Fish Fry
Epic Deli (McHenry) – The Wookiefoot Panini
Krystal Thai (Crystal Lake) – Shrim Shumai & Panang Curry w/ shrimp & tofu
Halftime Bar & Grill (Johnsburg)  – Thin crust loaded with pepperoni & jalapenos
Taqueria Buena Vista (Crystal Lake) – Torta Milanesa


Jean S. 

Hub Market (McHenry) – Lobster Roll (Wednesdays only)
Richard Waker’s Pancake House (Crystal Lake) – Mushroom & Cheddar Omelette
Green PeaPod (McHenry) – Pad See Ew
Epic Deli (McHenry)  – John Bender or The Gump
Hidden Pearl Café (McHenry) – Almond Latte

Paulette W.

Tasty Sushi (Cary) – Fire Dragon Roll or Happy Roll
BOLD American Fare (Algonquin) – Shirmp & Grits
Carlos River Café (Crystal Lake) – Carne a la Tampiquena
Georgio’s Chicago Pizzeria & Pub (Crystal Lake) – SpinArt Deep Dish add sausage


Rachel S. 

Tasty Sushi (Cary) – Tuna Bowl & Romantic Roll
Cuco’s Burrito Express (Cary) – Steak and Chile Relleno Tacos
Da BaffoneCucina Italiana (Crystal Lake) – Goat Cheese Marinara
Thumka Indian Express (Algonquin) – Aloo Tikki Chat, Saag Paneer, Chicken Biryani
Galati’s Hideaway (Cary) – Caesar salad with salmon

Melanie T.

Green Pea Pod (McHenry) – Pad Thai or Beef Salad
Seaside Prime (Richnond) – Shrimp DeJonghe 
Bimbo’s Italian Restaurant (McHenry) – Vesuvio
Kyoto Japaneses Steak House & Sushi Bar (Crystal Lake) – Hibachi


Mark Z.

Portillo’s (Crystal Lake) – The Big Beef hot, sweet and wet
Around the Clock (Crystal Lake) – Hot sandwiches
Richard Walker’s Pancake House (Crystal Lake) – Everything
Chop Suey Hut (Woodstock) – Everything
Lou Malnati’s (Lakewood)  – Pan Pizza, butter crust, cheese and sausage

Beth R.

El Norteno (Island Lake) – Carne asada
Epic Deli (McHenry) – Cheetowich
Village Squire (Crystal Lake & McHenry) – Greek salmon
Sushi King (McHenry & Algonquin) – Gyoza, chicken fried rice


Kelly T.

Plum Garden Restaurant (McHenry) – Hong Kong Chicken
DC Cobbs (McHenry & Woodstock) – Mac N Cheese
Portillo’s (Crystal Lake) – Burgers
Jexals Wing-zeria (McHenry) – Wings
Kyoto Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar (Crystal Lake) – Hibachi

Ashley M.
Mori Sushi (Lake in the Hills) – Everything
El Fuego Tacos & Burritos (Algonquin) – King Burrito
Duke’s Alehouse & Kitchen (Crystal Lake) – Togarashi Fries and Falafel
Ta Wan Thai (Algonquin) – Pad Thai and Thai iced tea
Kosta’s Gyros (Algonquin) – Greek Salad

Photo by: O The Places We Go

Jennifer V. 

Village Squire (Crystal Lake & McHenry) – Burgers, Greek fries, veggi panini
Chen Chinese Cuisine (Crystal Lake & Lake in the Hills)– General Tso Chicken and Crab Rangoon
Tacos El Norte (McHenry) – Salsa, Guac & Chips and Chile Relleno
Andy’s Family Restaurant (Crystal Lake) – Egg salad sandwich on white toast with a slice of cheese and raw onions
Mugs Pizza and Ribs (Crystal Lake) – Extra thin crust pizza and lightly toasted cheesy garlic bread

Jess C. 

Old Town Pizza (McHenry) – Thin Crust Pizza with bacon
Meat & Potatoes Eatery (McHenry) – Greek Gyro Bowl
Epic Deli (McHenry) – Jeraldino
The Breakers (Crystal Lake) -  Egg Rolls
Plum Garden Restaurant (McHenry) – Mongolian Beef


Erin M. 

1776 Restaurant – Salmon, tuna tartare
Duke’s Alehouse & Kitchen – Burgers, mussels, falafel sandwich, grilled romaine Caesar salad
Public House of Woodstock (Woodstock) – Lobster Cobb, mushroom soup, French style chicken wings
Kyoto Japanese Steak House & Sushi Bar (Crystal Lake) – Summer roll, mountain roll, house salad
Georgio’s Chicago Pizzeria & Pub (Crystal Lake) – Spinach deep dish, papa Georgio’s thin crust, chicken and broccoli bowtie pasta

Bonnie W.

BBQ King Smokehouse (Huntley & Woodstock) – Brisket 2x2 with chopped brisket and pulled pork
Village Squire (Crystal Lake & McHenry) - Prime Rib
Da Baffone Cucina Italiana (Crystal Lake) – pasta with vodka sauce
Plum Garden Restaurant (McHenry) – Hong Kong Chicken 
The Cottage (Crystal Lake) – Burgers