Best Places to Eat in Peoria, IL

By Hollie Deese on April 28, 2011 at 2:25 pm EST

Whether you’re craving a glass of apple cider or a handcrafted microbrew, hot dogs or pan-seared foie gras, Peoria’s sure to have a place to please your palate.


City News Café


is a coffee shop that also offers sandwiches and gourmet hot dogs, while Avanti’s Ristorante has four locations in Peoria, serving up pasta, chicken, pizza and other Italian specialties.



If you’re in the mood fancy fare with a friendly touch, head to Jill’s on Galena. Chef Jill Grube caters to the foodies, allowing them to indulge in the only chef’s table in Central Illinois. At $75 per person, you can have front-row seats as she creates eight courses for your party from an ever-changing menu. Of course, the restaurant also treats those who prefer to limit themselves to just two or three courses, along the lines of pumpkin-mushroom bisque followed by pistachio-crusted scallops over pasta. And then who’s going to turn down desserts like chocolate lust cake?





Though Jill’s features a decadent Sunday brunch for early birds, night owls will love Richard’s on Main, which serves sizzling hand-cut steaks until 4 a.m.





You won’t go thirsty there, nor at most places in Peoria, which is home to two breweries, John S. Rhodell Brewery and Granite City Food & Brewery. Rhodell, a Peoria original, has more than 30 different beers on tap, including American wheat beers, Belgian lagers and Scottish ales.





But Peorians are known for crafting more than just beer. Apple Blossom Farm features an on-site bakery, where you can get a pulled pork sandwich, applewood smoked brat or sticky cinnamon roll. The Harvest Barn on the farm is loaded with jams, jellies and apple butter for sale, as well as salsa and tangy apple cider.





More homegrown food is available on Saturday mornings at the Riverfront Market. Solely featuring items straight from local farms and gardens, the farmers’ market features a wide selection of fresh produce, meats, eggs, cheese and breads.



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