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Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

Margaritas, happy hours, great times

Downtown DeKalb drinking spots
Gabby Crabtree
A margarita sits on the counter at Rosita’s in DeKalb. Rosita’s, along with the restaurants below, are great places to get a drink in DeKalb. (Gabby Crabtree | Northern Star)

Editor’s note: Check out the Northern Star’s National Margarita Day gallery. 

A pinch of salt, a slice of lime, a note of sweet citrus and a bunch of tequila are all the necessary pieces that make the quintessential margarita.

In the downtown DeKalb area, there are a number of places that feature sweet deals and epic happy hour specials that are perfect for wetting your whistle after a long day of work or school (for responsible adults aged 21 years and older).

One such DeKalb resident, Connie Storey, NIU’s Associate Director of Scholarships and Fellowships, loves going to El Jimador, an authentic Mexican restaurant known for its killer margaritas, located at 260 E Lincoln Highway. 

“I love going to El Jimador because of the specials. I usually get the pitcher on the rocks because there is always a special going on,” Storey said. 

El Jimador has new specials daily, posted on its chalkboard in front of the restaurant and on its Facebook page.

On Wednesday, the restaurant features Mediana margaritas for $7. 

The restaurant has happy hour specials daily from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. 

Popular specials include $20 beer buckets and $5 for the house wine. 

Other popular drink locations Downtown include La Calle Bar and Music Venue, 263 E. Lincoln Highway, and Hometown Sports Bar & Grill, 241 E. Lincoln Highway. 

La Calle has a number of fun deals, including special themed drinks for holidays and local events. 

La Calle has different specials and deals every day.  

If you enjoy mimosas, La Calle is the place for you with $3 mimosas every Sunday. 

The venue also features fun flavors for holiday cocktails such as raspberry, pineapple and cranberry.  

On Wednesdays, La Calle also features $3.50 well drinks. 

To discover more specials and events, customers can visit its Facebook page.  

Hometown is known for hosting many popular events, live music and karaoke on Thursdays and Saturdays. They also have daily specials and Happy Hour Monday through Friday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. 

“I love going to Hometown. They’ve got great events and drinks,” Jeremy Nelson, a DeKalb resident, said. “I like their specials, especially when they got a sale on Long Islands.” 

While each of the locations have similar offerings, such as food, live music, specials and holiday themed drinks, each one also offers something unique. 

El Jimador is geared toward being a restaurant that offers good drinks with a focus on authentic Mexican food and events, such as Mariachi. 

La Calle offers darts and also has a Hispanic influence. They also feature live DJs and music events such as Night Vibes on Saturdays. 

Hometown also offers sports viewing and gambling stations. They also feature live bands in performances in the adjacent Stage Left Venue which is owned by Hometown. 

With a variety of fun and exciting offerings, each of these locations has a bit of something for everyone.  


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