South Gate Cafe

★★★★☆
42.2518 -87.8416
Map and Directions to South Gate Cafe

847-234-8800

655 Forest Ave

Lake Forest, IL

60045

Get Directions

About South Gate Cafe

Hours
Sun 11:30am-8pm, Mon-Thu 11:30am-8:30pm, Fri-Sat 11:30am-9:30pm

Food

Food
More choices in Lake Forest:
Resultset_next

Wildfire

235 Parkway Dr Lincolnshire, IL

Resultset_next

Carlos' Restaurant

429 Temple Ave Highland Park, IL

3.5 10
Hi! Sign in to let us know how South Gate Cafe was?
Write a Review
Reviews 1 - 10 of 10.

Latest reviews from Citysearch.

.

My family and I have visited many times. When I would visit my mother a lunch or two at South Gate was a must. My favorite was the Clements Sandwich, although it may not still be on the menu. As I don't get back to LF very often, I've had to make the sandwich myself. The staff has always been great. They are friendly, warm, and helpful. Wish I could get back more often.

4
★★★★☆

My family and I have visited many times. When I would visit my mother a lunch or two at South Gate was a must. My favorite was the Clements Sandwich, although it may not still be on the menu. As I don't get back to LF very often, I've had to make the sandwich myself. The staff has always been great. They are friendly, warm, and helpful. Wish I could get back more often.

Pros: Charming indoors, private room available, patio fun in summe

Cons: None

.

We had been meaning to try Southgate cafe for years. We always loved walking the "square" in Lake Forest and visiting the shops but for some reason had never stopped for lunch or dinner. We always wanted to try the outside patio (summer), but being that it was November we opted for the warm dining room.

I liked the atmosphere and we enjoyed looking over the menu. We brought my 70 yr old mother with us and she can be picky but finally found a dish she liked. My husband ordered a pasta dish and I ordered an entree salad. We started with an appetizer (which was delicious) and my husband ordered a starter salad.

Well, after waiting awhile our waitress (who was nice but not very well informed as far as the menu went) said 2 (yes two) of the dishes we ordered were not available!! Ok - so back to the menu we went. My husband and mom had to change their entrees.

My salad was ok (nothing to write home about), and my mom's pasta was ok...basically the food was ok. I really liked the appetizer and we all tried a mini-dessert, all of which were good.

Overall -- I would try it again (outside patio in the summer). But was very disappointed. The service was not very good - the waitress didn't seem to know anything about the menu and they didn't have TWO dishes available? Who knows what else wasn't available.

South gate Cafe needs some work. Good location but that's about it.

1
★☆☆☆☆

We had been meaning to try Southgate cafe for years. We always loved walking the "square" in Lake Forest and visiting the shops but for some reason had never stopped for lunch or dinner. We always wanted to try the outside patio (summer), but being that it was November we opted for the warm dining room.

I liked the atmosphere and we enjoyed looking over the menu. We brought my 70 yr old mother with us and she can be picky but finally found a dish she liked. My husband ordered a pasta dish and I ordered an entree salad. We started with an appetizer (which was delicious) and my husband ordered a starter salad.

Well, after waiting awhile our waitress (who was nice but not very well informed as far as the menu went) said 2 (yes two) of the dishes we ordered were not available!! Ok - so back to the menu we went. My husband and mom had to change their entrees.

My salad was ok (nothing to write home about), and my mom's pasta was ok...basically the food was ok. I really liked the appetizer and we all tried a mini-dessert, all of which were good.

Overall -- I would try it again (outside patio in the summer). But was very disappointed. The service was not very good - the waitress didn't seem to know anything about the menu and they didn't have TWO dishes available? Who knows what else wasn't available.

South gate Cafe needs some work. Good location but that's about it.

Pros: Good location, nice atmosphere

Cons: Service not as expected, they ran out of 2/3 dishes

.

overall i really enjoyed my first outting to southgate it had great service ranging from the greeting clerks all the way to the unbelivable waiters and waitress's who work there. from the second i walked in to the moment i left i was being curteously helped by sombody on the job. My favorite part of the expierence wich is South Gate was definitely the outstanding food, i ordered the pike which was fresher than ever, and my date had prime steak of sorts which was cooked to perfection. If i were to compare it to another resturaunt,with a similar type of food and guests, lets say the Grill on Laurel i would say that not only is the food at South Gate better(2 or 3 times beeter at that), that the service and overall cheerfullness of South Gate gives you an almost homy feeling while you're there and in doing so creates a much more appetizing mood/expierence. to compare the two returants number wise i would rate the Grill on Laurel a 7 out of 10 and South Gate a 9.9(i think the resturaunt would be better fitted "North Gate")

5
★★★★★

overall i really enjoyed my first outting to southgate it had great service ranging from the greeting clerks all the way to the unbelivable waiters and waitress's who work there. from the second i walked in to the moment i left i was being curteously helped by sombody on the job. My favorite part of the expierence wich is South Gate was definitely the outstanding food, i ordered the pike which was fresher than ever, and my date had prime steak of sorts which was cooked to perfection. If i were to compare it to another resturaunt,with a similar type of food and guests, lets say the Grill on Laurel i would say that not only is the food at South Gate better(2 or 3 times beeter at that), that the service and overall cheerfullness of South Gate gives you an almost homy feeling while you're there and in doing so creates a much more appetizing mood/expierence. to compare the two returants number wise i would rate the Grill on Laurel a 7 out of 10 and South Gate a 9.9(i think the resturaunt would be better fitted "North Gate")

.

I cant say enough about South Gate, I have lived in the area all of my life and I have always loved south gate! I love the patio I love the staff, and the food is by far the best in the area! If I can give one peice of advise to everyone in the Chicago area it would be, come to SOUTH GATE!

5
★★★★★

I cant say enough about South Gate, I have lived in the area all of my life and I have always loved south gate! I love the patio I love the staff, and the food is by far the best in the area! If I can give one peice of advise to everyone in the Chicago area it would be, come to SOUTH GATE!

Cons: none!

.

South Gate it's one of my favorite places to eat at. Special ocassions, this is the place we come to. We know that it's always going to be good food, great service, and that we are going to have a great time.

5
★★★★★

South Gate it's one of my favorite places to eat at. Special ocassions, this is the place we come to. We know that it's always going to be good food, great service, and that we are going to have a great time.

Pros: Kid Friendly

.

I have been to and ordered from South Gate several times and have been disappointed each time! The grip I have with them first and foremost, when I order, I am usually ordering at least $700 worth of food and they have the nerve to put an 18% gratuity on to our bill when I have my personal driver pick up the food. They were not negotiable or flexible. Each time they have screwed up our order, either forgeting items or getting it wrong! That is crazy to pay a large gratuity. The two managers and executive chef on duty think they can speak for the owner, boy am I glad they don't work for me. My business survives on word of mouth and people being pleased with our products and service. Obviously they do not feel the same way. When I posed the question, "what would you do if you received 30 individual orders? would you not make sure the food is prepared correctly? would you not make sure they received the items they ordered?" their response was sorry, the executive chef said we have to tack on 18% to your bill.

Whatever! Start serving fresh food ! Not lettuce that is wilted and duck that is not prepared correctly!

1
★☆☆☆☆

I have been to and ordered from South Gate several times and have been disappointed each time! The grip I have with them first and foremost, when I order, I am usually ordering at least $700 worth of food and they have the nerve to put an 18% gratuity on to our bill when I have my personal driver pick up the food. They were not negotiable or flexible. Each time they have screwed up our order, either forgeting items or getting it wrong! That is crazy to pay a large gratuity. The two managers and executive chef on duty think they can speak for the owner, boy am I glad they don't work for me. My business survives on word of mouth and people being pleased with our products and service. Obviously they do not feel the same way. When I posed the question, "what would you do if you received 30 individual orders? would you not make sure the food is prepared correctly? would you not make sure they received the items they ordered?" their response was sorry, the executive chef said we have to tack on 18% to your bill.

Whatever! Start serving fresh food ! Not lettuce that is wilted and duck that is not prepared correctly!

.

South Gate Cafe is a warm and inviting place to gather with friends. Patio dining (see photo) overlooks Lake Forest's Market Square. The menu is interesting and diverse, and best of all, everything is good. They have an excellent wine list if you are so inclined. I've eaten at South Gate a number of times and have always found the service, food, ambience to be very good. If you are looking for a place to host a party, they have an intimate banquet room upstairs.

4
★★★★☆

South Gate Cafe is a warm and inviting place to gather with friends. Patio dining (see photo) overlooks Lake Forest's Market Square. The menu is interesting and diverse, and best of all, everything is good. They have an excellent wine list if you are so inclined. I've eaten at South Gate a number of times and have always found the service, food, ambience to be very good. If you are looking for a place to host a party, they have an intimate banquet room upstairs.

Pros: Good food., Warm atmosphere., Good wine list

.

This was my first trip to the Cafe and I can say that I will go back.

The food was excellant, and seating was immediate. I went in the early evening, and sat outside and found the atmosphere lite and relaxing. I could definatly see a good romantic scene in the evening.

Parking was easy and service was good. The only thing I was surprised by was the total price, which was a bit high, but worth it for a good night out with a signifigant other or good friend.

4
★★★★☆

This was my first trip to the Cafe and I can say that I will go back.

The food was excellant, and seating was immediate. I went in the early evening, and sat outside and found the atmosphere lite and relaxing. I could definatly see a good romantic scene in the evening.

Parking was easy and service was good. The only thing I was surprised by was the total price, which was a bit high, but worth it for a good night out with a signifigant other or good friend.

Pros: Easy Parking, Great Food, Great Atmosphere

Cons: Pricy

.

Southgate is a great restaurant any time of year, although it is at its best during the summer months when you can sit outside. Food is excellent and the service is unmatched. Highly recommended!

5
★★★★★

Southgate is a great restaurant any time of year, although it is at its best during the summer months when you can sit outside. Food is excellent and the service is unmatched. Highly recommended!

.

This was our second trip to South Gate Cafe and we wish we had never come back. We ordered a pasta and risotto dish, which were bland and gritty tasting. The service was also mediocre. Given the high prices charged, we expected much more. We will never go back!

1
★☆☆☆☆

This was our second trip to South Gate Cafe and we wish we had never come back. We ordered a pasta and risotto dish, which were bland and gritty tasting. The service was also mediocre. Given the high prices charged, we expected much more. We will never go back!

Cons: expensive, food terrible, service mediocre

Editorial from

In Short
Originally a firehouse, this Lake Forest favorite now boasts a refined ambience of dark colors, candlelight and romantic jazz, drawing an affluent crowd of couples and families. Expect inventive country club fare, with…