Presenting the BEST of SW Lake 19

Outstanding local businesses large and small, old and new, widely known and hidden gems, all graced your inaugural “Best Of” ballots

The following pages reveal the top businesses in 24 different categories as selected by you, the readers of SW Lake Lifestyle.  The balloting time and again produced some very tight races with several categories being decided by the narrowest of margins, so we’ve acknowledged the runners-up and honorable mentions in each category as well.  Let us know any additional categories you’d like to see us include next time.

If your favorite finished 2nd or 3rd, be sure to vote for them next time around; if you agree with the choices, be sure to patronize these businesses – no doubt you’ll discover some great new places to shop, take a hike, eat, meet for coffee, grab a local brew, fix your car, fix a tooth, hear live music, get a haircut, watch a movie, work out, and much more.

And now, please enjoy THE BEST OF SW LAKE.


Threads Boutique

118 South Main Street | Wauconda

847.526.2058 |

Since opening at their location on Wauconda’s historic Main Street, Threads has become a local favorite spot for discriminating women to shop. Threads has high style fashions, accessories, jewelry and gifts at Main Street prices. Their motto: “Threads… We’ve Got You Covered!”

Runner-up: House of Betty Jane

Honorable Mention: LUXE Wearhouse


Motor Werks

1475 Barrington Road | Barrington

847.497.8669 |

Motor Werks began with the Mercedes-Benz and BMW franchises in 1971 located in downtown Barrington (present home of Motor Werks Cadillac). Motor Werks has grown to rank 89 among Crain’s Chicago Business Top 100 Privately Owned Companies in Chicagoland, with nearly 7,000 new and certified pre-owned vehicles delivered to individual retail customers.

Runner-up: Wickstrom    
Honorable Mention: Marquardt Buick/GMC


Farmhouse on North

117 North Avenue | Barrington

847.387.3408 |

Proprietor Meghan McGinty’s childhood dream was to open her own restaurant, and she brings her culinary talents to the fore at Farmhouse on North, her farm-to-table restaurant in downtown Barrington featuring fresh, home-cooked meals “from local farms to your table”.

Runner-up: Consume    
Honorable Mention: Joanie’s


Foglia YMCA

1025 N Old McHenry Road | Lake Zurich

847.438.5300 |

The mission of the YMCA of Metro Chicago is to develop strong children, families and communities across Metropolitan Chicago through academic readiness, character development, violence prevention, and fitness and healthy living – and SW Lake’s readers agree that the Foglia Y in Lake Zurich is living up to its mission.

Runner-up: Restoration Fitness   
 Honorable Mention: Renegade Fitness



20530 North Rand Road | Deer Park

847.726.8855 |

Avalon is an AVEDA Salon Spa, open seven days a week and conveniently located at Deer Park Town Center. Their team of 50 trained professionals provides hair care, skin care, nail care, massage therapy and makeup applications, using AVEDA organic products. Customers can purchase AVEDA products in Avalon’s 600 square-foot retail center.

Runner-up: Couture 360    
Honorable Mention: Vickie’s Personal Touch


Broken Oar

614 Rawson Bridge Road | Port Barrington

847.639.9468 |

Celebrating its 30th anniversary, three generations of patrons now enjoy Broken Oar’s panoramic views, spacious skydeck, Oar stage and party tent, year-round riverfront dining, and the largest beer garden in McHenry County with outdoor entertainment and daily special events all summer long.

Runner-up: Middleton’s    
Honorable Mention: Copper Fiddle


Long Grove 

114-128 Old McHenry Rd | Long Grove

847.459.0269 |

Deeply rooted in the craft of chocolate, Long Grove Confectionery uses the best ingredients (and old fashioned Midwestern hard work) to consistently create creamy, rich, decadent handcrafted excellence. After 42 years in their original location in Long Grove, they’re moving around the corner to Confectionery Lane (opening Fall 2017).

Runner-up: Tree Time   
 Honorable Mention: Epilogue


SLYCE Coal Fired Pizza

127 North Main Street | Wauconda

847.469.8840 |

New restaurants occasionally grab headlines and make a splash by virtue of their novelty, but upon further review need to prove they’re in it for the long haul. SLYCE’s consistent emphasis on delivering pizzas with just the right amounts of locally grown ingredients handcrafted to meet customer requests shows that they’re in it to win it.

Runner-up: Gianni’s    
Honorable Mention: Beelow’s


John’s Complete 
Auto Service

221 S. Main Street | Wauconda

847.526.7250 |

Located in downtown Wauconda at Route 176 (Liberty St.) & Main since 1978, John’s takes care of all makes and models, offering same day service and courtesy cars as needed. Their straightforward and honest approach: “We repair your vehicle right the first time and include a safety inspection on all cars.”

Runner-up: Hawkeye    
Honorable Mention: Lindberg


McGonigal’s Pub

105 South Cook Street | Barrington

847.277.7400 |

This traditional Irish Pub and restaurant located in the heart of downtown Barrington offers full lunch and dinner menus, daily specials, live entertainment, a late night menu, and much more.

Runner-up: Middleton’s    
Honorable Mention: Chasers


The Kim 
Alden Team

754 W. Northwest Hwy | Barrington

847.254.5757 |

Kim Alden and her award-winning team maximize their marketing tools and expertise to help both sellers and buyers with all their real estate needs.

Runner-up: Renee Clark    
Honorable Mention: Lynn Fleishman


Hawthorn Woods Family Dental

60 Landover Pkwy A | Hawthorn Woods

847.550.5000 |

The team at Hawthorn Woods Family Dental Care is committed to sending each patient home with a smile. Dr. Jeffrey Copeland and his staff offer state-of-the-art dental care in a comfortable, friendly environment. Patient questions and concerns are always answered, making sure that everyone feels confident during each step of their treatment.

Runner-up: Lakeside Dental   
Honorable Mention: Sandy Point Dental


Timothy Grant

155 North Rand Road | Lake Zurich

847.726.1556 |

At Timothy Grant, you can watch your custom jewelry’s design evolve from a sketch into the finished creation of your dreams. They’re experts at repurposing existing jewelry with sentimental value into dazzling new pieces. Visit their new showroom on Rand Road and work with their talented designers to create something unique to you that makes you feel special each time you wear it.

Runner-up: Lake Zurich Jewelers    
Honorable Mention: Leonard’s


Phil Guerrero, 
PMG Wealth Management

60 Landover Pkwy Suite D | Hawthorn Woods


Certified Financial Planner Phil Guerrero strives to solve the needs of his affluent clients, their families, and their businesses as part of a long-term consultative relationship, basing every financial decision on the client’s specific situation. For 20 years he’s helped clients develop strategies to meet their financial goals.

Runner-up: Mark Hornok, Edward Jones

Honorable Mention: Joseph Guin, NW Mutual



763 South Rand Road | Lake Zurich

847.540.0600 |

Since the 1920’s, Beelow’s family farm has been part of the Lake County landscape raising cattle, hogs and grain crops. Now in their 3rd generation, Beelow’s Steakhouse is proud to feature locally raised cuts of beef and pork from brother Duane’s prized stock, along with slow-roasted prime rib, fresh seafood and locally sourced produce.

Runner-up: Stony River    
Honorable Mention: Dock’s


Century 16 Deer Park (Cinemark)

21600 W Field Pkwy | Deer Park

847.438.8518 |

Fans hail Century 16 Deer Park for offering 16 screens from which to choose, a good selection of food options, reasonable movie prices, overall cleanliness, “Discount Tuesdays”, friendly employees, and their location at Deer Park Town Center near many pre- or post-movie dining and shopping options.

Runnerup: Catlow    
Honorable Mention: AMC Hawthorn



120 S. Hough Street | Barrington

224.633.2188 |

When combined – 18% chromium and 8% nickel – steel becomes a better performing stainless steel. The result is 18|8, the name of Barrington’s premium men’s salon, where staff shares their expertise in men’s hair care and grooming to help transform their customers to look better, feel better, and perform better.

Runner-up: Barrington Barber Shop    
Honorable Mention: Tremonte’s


Walter E. Smithe

280 South Milwaukee Ave | Vernon Hills

847.821.9520 |

A family business in its 4th generation, Walter E. Smithe features not only a wide range of quality home furnishing items, but also offers a team of designers who will explore your vision, style, and budget and customize a plan for your room or your entire home, including everything from furniture to floor coverings, art, window treatments, light fixtures, and accessories.

Runnerup: Penny Mustard    
Honorable Mention: Epilogue


SLYCE Coal Fired Pizza

127 North Main Street | Wauconda

847.469.8840 |

SLYCE’s focus: less is more, keep it simple, make it fresh and source it locally. Preserving the art of handcrafted artisanal coal-fired pizza, they offer their guests a balanced, fresh, perfectly charred pie.

Runner-up: Lou Malnati’s    
Honorable Mention: JJ Twigs


Koffee Kup

30 East Main Street | Lake Zurich

847.438.8110 |

A classic example of small town charm “where the locals go” and the staff knows the regulars’ orders before they sit down.  Some customers have been sipping their coffee and downing their home-style diner cuisine for almost 40 years, according to Facebook reviews. Koffee Kup hosts “Coffee with the Mayor” (of Lake Zurich) on the 3rd Wednesday each month at 9:00 a.m.

Runner-up: Honey Hill    
Honorable Mention: Beans & Leaves


Threads Boutique

118 S. Main Street | Wauconda

847.526.2058 |

Lest the men of SW Lake be found without Threads, this upscale yet affordable boutique has contemporary clothing and accessories for both men and women. Located on historic Main Street in Wauconda, Threads has high style fashions, accessories, jewelry and gifts at Main Street prices. Their slogan: “Threads… We’ve Got You Covered!”

Runner-up: Buckle   
Honorable Mention: Phillips


Onion Pub

22221 N Pepper Road | Barrington

847.381.7308 |

Since firing up their first batch of Paddy Pale Ale in 1996, the Onion Pub has been expanding their brewery in search of “The best damn brew you’ll ever drink.” Now, Wild Onion beers are distributed throughout Chicagoland and five other Midwest states, and their Pub serves up hearty comfort food in generous portions in their timber framed bar and dining room.

Runner-up: Mickey Finn’s    
Honorable Mention: Side Lot Brewery


A.M. Landscape & Design

28320 N. Hilltop Terrace | Mundelein

847.224.2167 |

If you’re looking to create a unique outdoor living space, or simply liven up your existing landscape, A.M. Landscape Design will work with you to create the perfect balance of beauty and functionality. From garden walls and plantings, to brick patios and outdoor kitchens, they use the best materials and guarantee their work.

Runner-up: Poul’s    
Honorable Mention: ILT Vignocchi


Cuba Marsh

24205 West Cuba Road | Deer Park

847.367.6640 |

The 781-acre Cuba Marsh Forest Preserve offers hikers one of the prettiest blends of marsh, woodland and grassland in Lake County. Three miles of trails take visitors through open areas of gently rolling hills, featuring views of the marsh and scattered groves. Cuba Marsh is part of the Lake County Forest Preserves.

Runner-up: Lakewood    
Honorable Mention: Independence Grove