Don’t leave your manners in the car when you pull off Route 66 for a meal at the Ariston Cafe in Litchfield, Illinois. Inside the vintage brick building, you’ll find neatly attired servers; tables topped with carefully folded cloth napkins; and a menu full of surprises like fried artichoke hearts ($6.99), halibut steak ($22.99) and rainbow trout ($16.99), along with standbys like pork chops ($12.99) and a tenderloin sandwich ($7.59). Other selections include a handful of steaks, as well as Southern, Italian, Mexican and Greek fare. At the end of the meal, prepare to drool over the tempting homemade desserts presented on a sampler tray for your consideration.
Dishes are often delivered to tables by a member of the family that’s owned the cafe since it opened in 1924. If you happen to be a Route 66 traveler, ask to see the scrapbook of roadies from around the world who’ve stopped in before you, many promising to return.