The Lighthouse Inn Supper Club, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2012, is the third-oldest restaurant in the state. Decorated with lighthouse and nautical art and furnished with tufted naugahyde booths and tables, it looks and feels like an oldtime supper club should, with easy listening jazz adding to the club atmosphere. The owner comes to each table to see how everyone is doing and seems to be on a first-name basis with many customers.
We ordered the house specialty of barbecue ribs ($14.99) served with sweet potato fries sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. The ribs were fall-off-the-bone tender and lean—just the way we like them. They came with what's described on the menu as "our secret 100-year-old BBQ sauce." Our waitress also brought a salad and warm, homemade garlic-basil bread to dip in olive oil with pepper and Parmesan cheese. The unexpected highlight was when the lights suddenly went out due to an area power outage and we ate by candlelight.
Originally a small inn with rental cabins, The Lighthouse Inn became a common stop for Chicago mobsters during Prohibition. Al Capone and John Dillinger ate here. Though the rental cabins are gone—as well as two stone lighthouses that used to stand in front of the restaurant—the dining tradition continues today.
Besides the trademark barbecue, the menu includes steaks, seafood, pasta and broasted chicken. Listen to live jazz Friday and Saturday nights.