GLEN ELLYN – The foodie scene in Glen Ellyn will heat up this summer with the addition of high profile Geneva-based Mexican eatery “a toda madre” by Bien Trucha.
The restaurant, which will occupy the former home of Honey Cafe at 499 Main St., offers traditional Mexican cuisine with a modern twist. Its owners, a Geneva family with roots in Mexico City, hope to open the Glen Ellyn location in mid-July.
“We want the community to just embrace this as their local neighborhood restaurant,” co-owner Julio Cano said.
a toda madre is being received warmly by village business advocates, who say the restaurant will bring people to downtown Glen Ellyn who don’t live in the area and wouldn’t necessarily visit otherwise.
“I think it will bring a lot of traffic and new traffic, to our downtown area,” Glen Ellyn Chamber of Commerce co-Executive Director Georgia Koch said.
The restaurant has the potential to motivate shop owners to consider adjusting their evening hours, Alliance of Downtown Glen Ellyn Executive Director Carol White said. It also will provide an opportunity to showcase the downtown business tradition of remaining open until 8 p.m. Thursdays.
“It’s in the perfect location,” she said. “If you have to wait, you can go shop.”
Cano and his family operate two restaurants in Geneva – taqueria Bien Trucha and the original a toda madre, both of which have gained considerable clout.
Bien Trucha opened seven years ago at 410 W. State St. in a space previously occupied by a laundromat, Cano said. Gradually, the business expanded and developed a following.
Two years ago, the family bought the property next door to Bien Trucha and established a toda madre, which means “all about your mother,” or “totally awesome,” in Spanish.
a toda madre offers a diverse look at Mexican cuisine, he said, with an ever-changing menu, local ingredients and dishes borrowed from Bien Trucha.
Now that the restaurant is moving to Glen Ellyn, the original a toda madre location will be transformed into the family’s seasonal and concept test kitchen.
The Glen Ellyn restaurant will include existing staples from a toda madre and Bien Trucha, Cano said, as well as additions such as a signature lunch dish and special taco.
The space will have an upbeat, casual atmosphere and the menu will include tacos, ceviches, roasted corn and fresh fish. The bar will feature flavored margaritas, several tequilas and Mexican beer.
The owners of toda madre’s chose to relocate to Glen Ellyn because they already had a customer base in the village, he said, and because moving east would make them more accessible to diners in Chicago and large suburban markets such as Naperville.
“We’re so excited to welcome them to town,” White said.