A Mexican restaurant located one hour northwest of the Chicago loop is closed because of an outbreak of Salmonella.

The closed El Sombrero restaurant at 314 Lincoln Ave. in Fox Grove, IL. is linked to gastrointestinal illnesses.

Fox River Grove is a village in Algonquin Township of McHenry County and Cuba Township in Lake County, IL. Situated along the southern shore of the Fox River, the town is about 40 miles northwest of Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport.

El Sombrero and the McHenry Department of Health are cooperating in the outbreak investigation.  Neither the restaurant nor the departments have disclosed the number of illnesses that may be involved, nor their severity.

McHenry Public Health Administrator Melissa H. Adamson has requested the public’s help with the investigation. She asks that anyone who ate at El Sombrero from Aug. 23 to Sept. 3 complete a survey to assist her department in collecting data.

The survey found here should be filled out by everyone regardless of whether or not their visit to El Sombrero resulted in symptoms of Salmonella illness.

According to Adamson, the survey is part of a comprehensive investigation designed to eliminate the public health risk. The survey is on a secure web form that is HIPAA compliant, with no personal or medical information released.

The McHenry Health Department recommends that anyone who ate food from El Sombrero’s seek medical attention and testing if they do experience symptoms.


Food contaminated with Salmonella bacteria does not usually look, smell, or taste spoiled. Anyone can become sick with a Salmonella infection. According to the CDC, infants, children, seniors, and people with weakened immune systems are at higher risk of serious illness because their immune systems are fragile.

Anyone who has eaten any recalled products and developed symptoms of Salmonella food poisoning should seek medical attention. Sick people should tell their doctors about the possible exposure to Salmonella bacteria because special tests are necessary to diagnose salmonellosis. Salmonella infection symptoms can mimic other illnesses, frequently leading to misdiagnosis.

Symptoms of Salmonella infection can include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating contaminated food. Otherwise, healthy adults are usually sick for four to seven days. In some cases, however, diarrhea may be so severe that patients require hospitalization.

Older adults, children, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems, such as cancer patients, are more likely to develop a severe illness and serious, sometimes life-threatening conditions. Some people get infected without getting sick or showing any symptoms. However, they may still spread the infections to others.

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