Friday, June 25, 2010

Beningo's Restaurant

I've been remiss in not writing about a great meal we had a few months ago at Beningo's Restaurant in Bloomington.
My husband was looking for something different to do as we were in a little bit of a rut, ran across Beningo's on the web and noticed a picture of a nice looking pizza pie on their website, so he suggested we try the place and made a reservation.
The restaurant is located in a nondescript brick building.
On the phone, my husband had been asked if we wanted upstairs or down. He mentioned we had not been there before and the hostess said we wanted upstairs then.
We were taken to our table in the 1960s style dining room.
I looked over the menu which had a lot of pasta offerings, but with pizza being what made my husband pick the place I decided we needed to try it.
We went with one of their pre-arranged topping pies, the Sicilian, topped with sausage, tomatoes and hot peppers.
There was a cracker basket on the table and we munched on those a bit while we took in the atmosphere and waited for our food.
After looking around at some of the other diners it occurred to me that they served alcohol, which I hadn't realized when ordering.
We noticed some people showing up were leaving, apparently feeling that the wait for a table was too long or being told that there was no room.
We decided to see what we were missing in the basement so we headed down the stairs.
We were blown away by the decor! It reminded me of the early 1970s basement of my mom's friend's house when I was growing up, complete with vintage carpet. We decided it would be a blast to eat down there some time.
Back at our upstairs table the pizza soon arrived. It was wonderful! The pie took me back to the way pizza tasted as a kid at family-owned restaurants. The cheese (which I am picky about) and the sausage (which I am normally not a big fan of) were great.
With a pie like that paired with good service and great atmosphere, now that we've found Beningo's, we'll certainly be back.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Round up

We hit the Peoria RiverFront Market this past weekend and came away with some eggs, blueberries and grass fed hamburger patties.

I enjoyed some hummus, sourdough bread and an everything cookie from Goodness Café in Peoria.

We took in another movie at Peoria Theater, after which it occurred to me what a value it is. The show tickets were $6 and I noticed they have a 7" pizza and soda combo for $5. A glass of wine is $4 and domestic beers are $2.50.
Great ticket prices, great concession prices AND an interesting movie selection.

We enjoyed lunch at Emo's in Peoria while watching road construction crews working on a Saturday afternoon. I still have not encountered a better specimen of cheese fries in the last 10 years or so.
We also took a look at a timeline of sorts they have posted on the side of the building. Oddly neither my husband nor I remember Emo's being torn down and rebuilt in the 1980s.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


I hear that the former Ned Kelly's/Feldan's location in Peoria will have a new occupant some time next month.

The restaurant 309 opens tomorrow in Peoria Heights. I am looking forward to trying the artisan cheeses and the local meats and produce.