Salmonella linked to Adobo Grill

The city's health department says nine people who became ill ate at Adobo Grill.

Two Adobo Grill restaurants, including the one in Wicker Park, have been the focus of a Chicago health investigation.

Health officials say nine of the 17 people who got sick with salmonella saintpaul, the strain linked to the nationwide salmonella tomato outbreak, ate at the Adobo restaurants.

Local health officials are working to figure out what the victims had in common, but it's difficult.

"We suspect it was a food served at the restaurant, but because the recipes had so many ingredients in it, based on just this information we can't say it was tomatoes or onions or other types of spices," said Dr. Susan Gerber, Chicago Dept. Of Public Health.

Health officials emphasize that the Adobo Grill restaurants have fully cooperated with the investigation, which also included a second restaurant in the Old Town neighborhood.

Nationwide, the outbreak has sickened 277 people.

Health officials are trying to pinpoint the source of the salmonella-tainted tomatoes.

In Chicago, the Adobo Grill's president released a statement. It says, in part, "When purchasing produce for use at the restaurant, there is no way to know whether it may harbor salmonella bacteria. Just like anyone buying produce at the supermarket, Adobo Grill relies on government oversight and enforcement of regulations regarding the proper handling of produce by the growers, processors and distributors who bring the produce to market."

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