What makes this old neighborhood diner a staple in North Lawndale? $1.35 cheese burgers served with love

alt text By Pat Nabong, Reporter, The Real Chi

New Pine Valley Restaurant, which has been in the North Lawndale community for over 50 years, is most famous for its $1.35 cheese burgers. But customers said what makes the food special isn’t the ingredients. It’s the people who make them. 

Inconspicuously tucked inside a green, vintage building on the intersection of South Pulaski Road and 16th Street, the restaurant served North Lawndale residents like Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Customers said the warmth of the owner, fondly called “Mama Lou” by her customers and employees, is what keeps them coming back. And to many residents of the neighborhood, she is what makes this mom and pop diner home.