The Village of Oak Park | 123 Madison St.  Oak Park, IL 60302 |

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Restaurants honored for cleanliness

Ten Oak Park restaurants were recognized by the Oak Park Department of Public Health and Board of Health for having the highest two-year average inspection scores. Each of these restaurants’ food service sanitation efforts earned them a Johnson Restaurant Award, named for Oak Park’s first lunchroom that operated in the 1890s at 124 Lake St. The award is presented each year to the 10 top-scoring restaurants.

This year’s Johnson Award winners were chosen from 79 eligible restaurants. For the fourth straight year King & I, Buzz Café and Cucina Paradiso earned recognition, making them the longest-running Johnson Award honorees.

The awards are based on scores from a 45-point inspection survey and averaged over a two-year period. These restaurants are responsible for some of the most complex aspects of food service and meal preparation, including cooking, cooling, reheating and serving. Each of these processes must be carried out to the exacting standards mandated by the Illinois State Food Service Sanitation Code. All licensed food establishments in Oak Park receive detailed inspections and education from the Health Department, as the Village works with all commercial food handlers to help make sure they meet state safety standards

The Health Department inspects more than 200 food service establishments in the Village every year, from day care centers to senior living facilities and traditional restaurants to cafes. These businesses are divided into three broad categories based on the complexity of their operations. The Johnson Award winners are all restaurants that have fairly complex food service processes and are required to maintain competent management and continuous supervision of every step of their food service operations.

This is the 31st year the Johnson Restaurant Awards have been presented. Recipients receive a door decal and a recognition certificate from the Health Department. For more information on the awards, call 708.358.5480 or email

2016 Johnson Award winners

  • Boss Burrito, 1110 W. Westgate St.
  • King & I, 105 N. Marion St.
  • Sagano Sushi, 731 Lake Street.
  • Jerusalem Café, 1030 W. Lake St.
  • Buzz Café, 905 S. Lombard Ave.
  • Penny’s Noodle Shop, 1130 Chicago Ave.
  • Michael’s Beef House, 6747 North Ave.
  • Munch, 104 N. Marion St.
  • Cucina Paradiso, 814 North Blvd.
  • Wendy’s, Store #66-1060, 11 Harlem Ave.