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  • Post #31 - October 2nd, 2008, 7:47 am
    Post #31 - October 2nd, 2008, 7:47 am Post #31 - October 2nd, 2008, 7:47 am
    jimswside wrote:Cathy,

    Great pics, Damn, I wish I could write as well as you do you, you brought C.C. alive with your review.


    Thanks for the compliments. I'm sorry it took me this long to offer my support to your nomination.

    For Cajun Connection, you are certainly the eternal flame making this nomination possible.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #32 - October 4th, 2008, 7:39 am
    Post #32 - October 4th, 2008, 7:39 am Post #32 - October 4th, 2008, 7:39 am
    Though admittedly pretty far from the city, Cajun Connection is an example of exactly what the GNR program is all about. Cajun Ron presides over his domain, extolling the virtues of his cooking, talking about the ingredients and explaining how he drives back and forth between Utica and Louisiana in search of the high quality ingredients he uses to turn out some mighty fine Cajun food in the wilds of North Central Illinois. I stongly support this nomination.

    Image
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #33 - October 4th, 2008, 2:31 pm
    Post #33 - October 4th, 2008, 2:31 pm Post #33 - October 4th, 2008, 2:31 pm
    I think Utica really stretches the geographical boundaries of the program, but sure seems to meet all other criteria.

    And its clearly close enough to generate quite a number of LTHer visits. And there really doesn't seem to be much community support for mileage boundaries, so I see no real reason not to vote for it.

    I do think we ought to consider what we want to do, if anything, about geographical boundaries.
  • Post #34 - October 4th, 2008, 2:35 pm
    Post #34 - October 4th, 2008, 2:35 pm Post #34 - October 4th, 2008, 2:35 pm
    Aaron Deacon wrote:I think Utica really stretches the geographical boundaries of the program, but sure seems to meet all other criteria.

    And its clearly close enough to generate quite a number of LTHer visits. And there really doesn't seem to be much community support for mileage boundaries, so I see no real reason not to vote for it.

    I do think we ought to consider what we want to do, if anything, about geographical boundaries.


    Aaron,

    I'll remind you that we have several active posters for whom Utica is their neighborhood.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #35 - October 6th, 2008, 10:47 am
    Post #35 - October 6th, 2008, 10:47 am Post #35 - October 6th, 2008, 10:47 am
    Wow, Cathy2! Thanks for posting the pictures from our meal there.....how long ago was that? Seriously, CC is as much about the food as it is about Ron, the place would be nothing without him. We first stumbled upon the place about 6 years ago and it was Ron, tempting us with samples, making us try things that had us coming back. We began bringing home large carry out orders so our friends could try things and then return with our friends to try more. Our favorite time was a few years back when we brought a friend from Argentina and his wife and father in law who are from Slovenia, Ron was as fascinated with them as they were with alligator! It's great to see the Cajun Connection get some love.
  • Post #36 - October 6th, 2008, 1:08 pm
    Post #36 - October 6th, 2008, 1:08 pm Post #36 - October 6th, 2008, 1:08 pm
    On a lovely autumn night I first enjoyed a spirited soccer game in Oswego and then headed south and west for a dinner in Utica. Crusing into the sunset among the cornfields, I was at peace, a Midwestern boy in my element.

    It was a lot farther than I thought, so I had time for these thoughts.

    But it was worth it. Good gumbo using a brick roux, followed by a very respectable Oyster Po' Boy - I always start with the basics. Welcoming place and staff.

    Later made my way to Rip's in Ladd to enjoy some fried chicken I had heard about, which leads me to wonder what it is about that area and deep frying, but on the narrower issue of CC...

    Good ingredients, creative and sophisticated use of a fryer, solid roux, good beer, pleasant place. As someone who has a host on in-laws in the area and had previoulsy been doomed to revisiting the mediocre meat tortellini (locally referred to as "ravs"), overcooked and served in an insipid, probably canned, sauce with a salad bar that would not have been cutting edge in 1960, I am thrilled to have this new option.

    I will be back. GNR worthy for me.
    d
    Feeling (south) loopy
  • Post #37 - March 19th, 2010, 6:38 am
    Post #37 - March 19th, 2010, 6:38 am Post #37 - March 19th, 2010, 6:38 am
    I support Cajun Connection 100% for renewal.

    To me it is the epitome of what a GNR is. A laid back place with great food, good prices, and a passionate owner/chef. Plus they are the best at what they do in Chicagoland by a wide margin.

    It holds a pretty steady place in my dining out rotation, every couple of months I head there, and wonder why it took me so long to go back.
    R.I.P. jimswside - 5/2/16



    @GrubSeeker
  • Post #38 - March 25th, 2010, 9:19 am
    Post #38 - March 25th, 2010, 9:19 am Post #38 - March 25th, 2010, 9:19 am
    Let me ad to the support for Cajun Connections renewal! As I had said in my original nomination, Cajun Connection is every bit an extension of Ron and his enthusiasm for sharing the food he grew up on. We have always felt like we were being welcomed into his home to share good food and good company.
  • Post #39 - April 3rd, 2010, 9:36 am
    Post #39 - April 3rd, 2010, 9:36 am Post #39 - April 3rd, 2010, 9:36 am
    Hi,

    Over the last few months, I have had three groups of friends go to Starved Rock. Each group was advised to dine at Cajun Connection. Each one has been visiting this area for years and never heard of Cajun Connection.

    When they returned I heard how ecstatic they were with this restaurant. Those familiar with Cajun food ranked it their preferred location for our region. Big glowing reports with the only regret not having gone before.

    While Cajun Connection approaches the outer limits of GNR territory, it merits its GNR for excellence for what they offer.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #40 - April 3rd, 2010, 12:48 pm
    Post #40 - April 3rd, 2010, 12:48 pm Post #40 - April 3rd, 2010, 12:48 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:While Cajun Connection approaches the outer limits of GNR territory, it merits its GNR for excellence for what they offer.


    Not only does it approach the outer limits of GNR territory, its location approaches the outer limits of civilization (as we know it). Nevertheless, we trekked out there last summer expecting something decent but never did we expect an OUTSTANDING meal--- and that is precisely what we had. Gumbo, Etouffee, and Jambalaya were delicious, however Boudin balls "stole the show"

    If its location were more convenient, I could easily see us patronizing Ron's several times a month. I wholeheartedly support Cajun Connection's GNR renewal.
    "Goldie, how many times have I told you guys that I don't want no horsin' around on the airplane?"
  • Post #41 - April 3rd, 2010, 5:17 pm
    Post #41 - April 3rd, 2010, 5:17 pm Post #41 - April 3rd, 2010, 5:17 pm
    set up an early dinner this afternoon @ CC, this place is solid, always good, always dependable. Sure its far from the city, but he road runs both ways, The 15 or so GNR's I hit this past year were just as far of a drive for me to hit.

    IMHO, much like Johnnie's, Cemita's, Hot Dougs, Honey 1, and a handfull of other GNR's, if Cajin Connection isnt a GNR then I dont know what is. Very good food(easily the best cajun food in the Chicagoland area by a wide margin), a dedicated, outgoing owner/chef, and a laid back vibe.

    combo appetizer(gator, popcorn shrimp, deep fried corn on the cob, and boudin balls:

    Image

    great gumbo:
    Image

    4# crawfish(almost as good as Toons)(a tip of the hat to Danny and what he does):

    Image
    R.I.P. jimswside - 5/2/16



    @GrubSeeker
  • Post #42 - April 4th, 2010, 10:29 pm
    Post #42 - April 4th, 2010, 10:29 pm Post #42 - April 4th, 2010, 10:29 pm
    Thanks, Jim, for arranging the meal. Great food, top to bottom. 4 Lbs of Crawfish went down easy as can be, though the Abita may have helped.

    Good as always.
    d
    Feeling (south) loopy

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