Hometown Hut is the new summer patio experience at Hometown Coffee & Juice at 700 Vernon Ave. in downtown Glencoe.
Shop owner Lou Rubin started Hometown Coffee & Juice with his wife Julie after 30 years of being in the mortgage business. He was inspired by his son Adam’s high school small business, Mister Chill, a shaved ice grab ‘n’ go that he helped him create. As a result, reopened what was previously Glencoe Roast and started Hometown Coffee & Juice in the fall of 2018.
Now, Rubin is always cooking up a new dining experience to keep North Shore residents interested. Last winter, it was outdoor dining on a heated patio in aesthetically-pleasing greenhouses. This summer, Rubin is teaming up with his son to offer shaved ice and more.
“We always try to find things that are fun and experiential and communal,” Rubin said. “So it checks all of our boxes of what we always try to do — have a fun product and have something that people get excited about, and that’s what it is.”
When Rubin went to the Village of Glencoe to inquire about how to make space for the shaved ice hut, there was no hesitation from the Village to support his business, he said.
“The response from the community was incredible,” Rubin said. “The Village allowed us to convert one of our greenhouses we had over the winter into a summer hut, so it’s professionally designed, and it’s really just a conversion of one of our greenhouses we made.”
Rubin said he can’t say for sure that Hometown Hut will return next summer, but he’s hoping it will, depending on how this summer turns out and the community response on the menu, the experience and the overall business.
Hometown Hut offers a wide variety of flavors of Mister Chill shaved ice, which Rubin describes as a “big fluffy snow cone” and Homer’s ice cream.
From classic blue raspberry to rainbow, there is most likely something for everyone on the menu. And if a sweet tooth’s got you down, ask for Hometown’s “fresh-pressed juice” to be poured over the shaved ice instead.
Hometown Hut menu:
Baby Scoop — $3.50
Regular — $4.50
Large — $6
One Scoop — $3.75
Two Scoops — $5
Toppings — 75 cents per topping
Hometown Hut is open, weather permitting, from 3-8 p.m. Monday-Friday and 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday-Sunday.
Alayne Trinko is an editorial intern who assists the editor-in-chief in reporting hyperlocal news, developing engaging multimedia, and building community trust. Alayne was a staff writer and Focus section editor for The DePaulia, DePaul University’s student-run newspaper. Alayne will be a junior studying journalism this fall and hopes to study abroad to conduct social justice reporting on women’s reproductive health issues in Africa or India in summer 2022. Follow her on Twitter @AlayneTrinko.