Friday, December 29, 2006

Danner's Salads

Danner's Salads, Inc. is located in Peoria and produces so many of your deli favorite salads such as pistachio fluff, red bean salad, German potato salad, and the best deli mustard salad I have ever tried. Most local grocery stores carry the Danner's brand.

October, 2008 — Danner's Salads has closed after more than 50 years in business. We did manage to get one more tub of the mustard potato salad in, but have been missing it greatly ever since.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Conklin's Barn II Dinner Theater

Something we've just started doing in the last five years or so is going to the Barn II in Goodfield for dinner and a live show. You won't go hungry with this dinner buffet featuring prime rib, fried chicken, soup, salad, bread and sides plus dessert, and you can always be sure they'll have your favorite alcoholic beverages at a great price, because you can bring them yourself (they don't sell liquor).
We always stick to the humorous shows, and we've never left without plenty of laughs. This is a true barn setting, and during intermission you can wander outside and visit the barn cats or wander across the road and visit the cows.
This place is popular, so be sure to call for reservations. Visit them online at

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Basta O'Neill's

We got a chance to check out Basta O'Neill's in Washington last week, located on Cummings Lane in a new strip mall. This Basta is run by the same people as the Basta in East Peoria.
While at the bar, we enjoyed some good wine in stemless glasses and an order of the best bruschetta I have had in close to 10 years. The owner said his daughter makes it herself, and it is a treat.
For dinner I had a spinach salad, which was very good, but could have used a bit more of the great dressing that was on it. I paired this with a cup of minestrone soup, which was good, too.
The decor is warm and nice, and the bar back is a stunning antique.
To go along with the O'Neill portion of the name, they have some Irish favorites on the menu and some Irish beers and decor.
This is a great addition to Washington. They are currently closed on Sundays.

Update: In April, Basta's started featuring live jazz on Thursdays. We made it in on a Thursday, and it was a good time. The server seemed a bit overwhelmed, but they should work the kinks out.
The portobello mushroom appetizer is great, and the bruschetta can be killer, as long as there's enough balsamic on it. If not, just ask for a side of balsamic and you're set.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Wheels o' Time Museum

If you're looking for a quirky place to spend an hour or so, and learn a lot about Peoria history while you're at it, look no further than the Wheels o' Time Museum, off Route 40 north of Peoria. This place is packed with historical items from Peoria's past. I've not seen a more comprehensive collection of Peoria artifacts and history in one place.
The museum is owned by 55 collectors, and many have donated interesting cars, clocks, toys, tools and more which pack these buildings. There are even great displays you can drop coins in to see them come to life. The museum is a bargain at $5 for adults, $2.50 for kids, but you can find a coupon at their web site,