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Monday, August 13, 2012

Bartlett: 2 Toots

Two of our children had birthdays last week. In honor of the now 4-year old's special day, and because of the free kid's meal coupon from their birthday club, our celebration took us back to 2 Toots Train Whistle Grill. Since we had just been to the Glen Ellyn restaurant last week, we decided to try the second and newest location in Bartlett. 

It was a good choice. The Bartlett 2 Toots serves food just as tasty as the Glen Ellyn store and every seat in the house here, too, is trackside for meal delivery via model train. The decor is similar in both restaurants. Train pictures and memoriablia cover almost every inch of the walls, even in the bathrooms. A TV in the corner runs a Thomas the Tank Engine video constantly. My six-year old votes for Bartlet for his favorite of the two places, though. Bartlett's 2 Toots has enormous windows overlooking the the Metra station and tracks across the street. There's also a large mirror on the back wall for those facing away from the windows during their meal. Though I think it's safe to assume that it's out of 2 Toots hands which engines run on the Milwaukee District West Line, my son was thrilled by seeing not one, not two, but three new Metra engines while we ate. Near as I can tell it's the  MP36PH-3S if you were wondering. We don't often see that particular engine on the lines closer to our home, so that alone made the trip worthwhile for him. For the birthday girl, the cupcake and train whistle that rounded the restaurant track just for her made the day pretty okay, too. We noticed the baby, who hasn't started waving to people yet, did an awful lot of waving to the train every time in came out of the kitchen. Aside from Mom and Dad trying to shake the oldies tunes from our heads once we left, everyone had a fine time.

After our dinner, we crossed the street to peek in the windows of the Metra station and the Bartlett Depot Museum. Both were closed for the day when we were there, but having them so close makes Bartlett a good choice for a fuller train outing during lunchtime. Thankfully, it's a no-horn zone for the railroad, so noise isn't an issue for my little ones' sensitive ears. Another possible source of noise would be from the local fire department's station across the street from 2 Toots. All was well and quiet while we were there, though. Trains, fire trucks, food! It's kid heaven.

(Grown ups, take a peek at the renovation photos of the 1873 Bartlett Depot Museum on their website. The entire structure needed to be lifted to pour a new foundation. Impressive project and fine results!)


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