Lou Mitchell's, Chicago, Illinois

Lou Mitchell's restaurant has earned it's nickname "the first stop on the Mother Road" due it's huge popularity with Route 66 roadies. Many folks stop at Lou Mitchell's for a good breakfast and a caffeine injection prior to heading off on their Route 66 adventure. The restaurant is known for it's quality food and generous portions making it popular with locals and tourists alike.

In 1958 the restaurant added a new service that embodied their sense of fun - free donut holes for all and boxes of milk duds for the ladies and children! There's often a line waiting out of the door but don't worry, the line moves fast and the free donut holes really help!

Established in 1949, Lou Mitchell's is a true icon of Route 66. With the obvious exceptions of the kitchen and bathrooms, the interior has been largely preserved in it's original style. The dining area retains it's original black and white terrazo flooring and most of the dining and counter areas remain unchanged.

Since Lou Mitchell’s is known for its breakfast and lunch you'll find that it's not open past 4pm on any given day. The lunch service begins at 10.30am but the breakfast can be ordered at any time.

Lou Mitchell's was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2006.

Visit their website.

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What started as a record of my personal Route 66 experience has grown into an active community of Route 66 veterans and newcomers alike. This website relies entirely on the experiences of its users so please feel free to recommend your own personal favourites.

Every Route 66 road trip is unique, and this site is in no way intended to be a definitive guide to the old road. However, I sincerely hope it offers a starting point to anyone planning their own Route 66 vacation.

Steve Bellamy

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