Food Services

Retail Food Establishments

Interested in opening a restaurant in Northbrook? Check out our Guide to Opening a New Restaurant.

All Illinois food handlers are required to maintain ANSI-Accredited Certificate. For more information, view the news release.

Licensing Information

All food-related licenses and permits must be issued before any food item is received, prepared, served or sold; are not transferable; must be displayed on site in a location easily visible to the public; and are valid only for the time displayed on the license or permit.

Restaurants and mobile food vendors must schedule and pass an inspection before applying for a business license.

Information pertaining to temporary food vendor, outdoor seating, and liquor licenses can be found here.

Additional Resources

Food Protection

The Village Sanitarian seeks to ensure that each food service establishment operating within the Village of Northbrook offers safe food to its customers.

Report a Food Borne Illness

If you believe you or someone you know may have come into contact with food or water-borne bacteria, please contact the Cook County Department of Public Health Communicable Disease Center at 708-633-8030 immediately and 708-633-4000 after hours. You can also submit a report to Cook County online, through the Food Borne Illness Complaint Form.

If you observe practices that may be unsanitary, you may request an inspection online via GONorthbrook or by calling 847-664-4059. The Village and Cook County investigate all requests.

Food Inspections

The Village Sanitarian inspects all Northbrook facilities that prepare, process, serve, sell, or store food consumed by the public, even if it is not the principal use of the facility. These facilities include restaurants, food stores, bakeries, gas station convenience stores, schools, daycare facilities, religious institutions, food processors, and others.

To schedule an inspection, please contact the Village Sanitarian at 847-664-4059 or by email.

Licensed establishments receive unannounced routine inspections multiple times per year. The establishment's risk category determines the number of inspections.

  • Category 1: Establishments with extensive menus and complex food processes that include preparing, cooking, cooling, and reheating food are inspected at least three times per year.
  • Category 2: Establishments with food that is typically delivered frozen or refrigerated, made per order, and not cooled or reheated are inspected at least twice per year.
  • Category 3: Establishments with prepackaged food that is not handled or cooked are inspected at least once per year.

Food Borne Illness & Communicable Disease

Regular inspections can help reduce the chance for food borne illness or the transmission of communicable diseases. Food and water borne illness can be caused by toxins created by bacteria growth, harmful algal species, or through contamination with other bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Many cases of food poisoning happen when someone eats a food that contains harmful bacteria.

According to the Center for Disease Control illnesses caused by the following bacteria are most common:

  • Cryptosporidium parvum
  • Escherichia coli 0157: H7 (E. Coli)
  • Salmonella species
  • Shigella dysentariae
  • Vibrio cholerae

Most symptoms from infections with food and water-borne bacteria include, but are not limited to, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, fever, and stomach cramping.