Nostalgia is heavy these days. We look back at the good old days often, it keeps our minds off the negative that surrounds us.

I can't blame people who do that either, and when it comes to nostalgia for food and restaurants, I'm right there with them.

Sadly, I didn't grow up in Rockford but I did join the Growing up in Rockford IL public group on Facebook to see and read what it was like back in the day.

When I ran across this question I was immediately intrigued:

Name a favorite place you ate at that is no longer here.

Nearly 1,400 comments later, I think I may have come up with the 10 most missed Rockford restaurants.

I didn't know so many great restaurants had come and gone over the years in Rockford. Here are the 10 best (and most missed) in no particular order.

1. The Last Straw - 915 South Alpine Road

Bygone Brand: The Last Straw was an Ice Cream Parlour and Family Restaurant with two locations in Rockford. The old fashion theme, authentic soda fountain and gigantic Firewagon Special (which served 1 to 10) made it a popular eatery for hanging out and special occasions.

2. Box's BBQ - 815 Marchesano Drive

Discover Our Town: Box's is a long-time Rockford tradition for great ribs, plus fish and chicken.

3. Maria's - 828 Cunningham Street

Facebook: Maria’s is not only OUR home, but has become HOME to so many of you throughout the years. Where so many enjoyed their first bowl of pasta and pizza and celebrated life’s important occasions – new babies, birthdays, graduations, engagements, weddings, and funerals.

4. El Reboso - 2648 11th Street

Facebook: Awesome restaurant best Mexican food in Rockford.

5. Ground Round -  4002 East State Street

Looks like Ground Round exited Rockford but still going strong in different cities across the US (including a slew in Wisconsin), "Ground Round is cooking this fall and looking ahead to a 50th birthday."

6. The Grotto Restaurant - 103 15th Avenue

Loop Net says the property is for sale or at least was at some point back in 2004. Is the building still standing? Still for sale?

7. North Towne Manor - North Main and Halsted

Not a whole lot of info on the web regarding North Towne Manor, but I did find a flier hyping up their New Year's dinner packages.

8. Dog n Suds - 3137 North Main Street

Only four Dog n Suds locations left in Illinois, with a few more scattered across the US. Again, not a ton of info on the famed drive-in restaurant.

9. Rocky Rococo - Address not found

The Wisconsin-based pizza chain must have come and gone, because there isn't a ton of info regarding Rocky Rococo's stay in Rockford.

10. Tumbleweed - 5494 East State Street

All Menus: Our welcoming bar & grill is the place to enjoy great food drink & atmosphere.

What gone but not forgotten Rockford restaurants do you miss the most?

Sweet Lenny is the brand manager of 97ZOK, Q98.5, and Operations Manager for Townsquare Media Rockford. Catch him afternoons 3 to 7 on 97ZOK. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and like his page on Facebook.

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