The last time I was at Sky Harbor, it was for a Saturday Night Cheeseburger episode. I thought I’d stop by there on a Friday night after work last week and try out their tenderloin for my twenty tenderloins tour, so it’s off to the MBIP after-work vessel we go!
Usually I go for my weekly tenderloin on a Sunday afternoon, but I had things to do last Sunday, so we're going to Sky Harbor on a Friday night. The ktichen there is open till 11PM on weekends so we'll just make it there in the nick of time. Here we are headed up Main Street towards Farmington Road.
There it is, like a welcoming beacon in the night, The Sky Harbor Steak House. I love that sign!
Here's the patio outside, but it's starting to get chilly outside, so there's no on out here.
Let's go inside and see what's shaking at Sky Harbor on this Friday evening.
There's a Halloween party going on here a week from Thursday. Daryl, Mike Nellas and Matt Warren are going to be doing a Buddy Holly tribute show and a fifty dollar gift certificate goes out to the "best dressed couple." Sounds like a great time!
Legendary Peoria musician, Jimmy Binkley tickles the ivories here on Wednesday's and Saturday's, but it's Friday, so we'll have to see if anyone is minding the piano bar tonight. Time will tell.
As we enter the restaurant, I see some familiar faces up there at the bar...
It's three generations of Klusendorf's, from left: Daryl, his mom Ellen and his son, Ryan. Daryl told me that his father and Ellen opened up the Lariat Steakhouse back in 1956 and ran it till they leased it out to the Kouri family in 1975. So the Klusendorf's are responsible for creating two classic Peoria restaurants here in P-town.
I quickly put Ryan to work by ordering the first beer of the evening and here he is serving it up with a smile.
Here's a shot of the taps at Sky Harbor, check out the 312 tap...
It's an old school telephone, looks like an antique in this day of cellular smartphones. A very cool tap!
Here's a shot of the spacious dining room at Sky Harbor, I love the back stone wall in here.
And another view of the dining area. This is one of Peoria's more unique and interesting looking restaurants.
I love the blue leather banquettes that line the walls.
This fighter plane art on the wall is great.
Here's the piano bar over in the corner, let's go see who's manning the keyboard tonight.
Chris Tarpley is in charge of the keyboards and he's doing a great job. In addition to wonderful piano playing, he's got a sweet and soulful voice. He's here most Friday nights, so you should stop by and check him out.
Here's Daryl joining in on the musical action. Daryl's a talented singer and songwriter and you should download his song, "Just Eat The Money." It's an hilarious, satirical look at how to solve this country's economic problems. You just eat the money!
It turns out there was a birthday in the house that night, so Daryl quickly grabbed his banjo and serenaded Toni, on the right who was with her date, Joryn to a chorus of, "Happy Birthday."
It's moments like these that make the Sky Harbor a magical, fun place to be at.
Okay, let's head back to the bar and see how our dinner order is shaping up.
Well, it looks like we're back in the nick of time. The table is set...
And here's Ryan serving up tonight's dinner. You'll notice there's two sandwiches being served here. That's because Daryl told me that while the tenderloin here is good, it's really not a signature dish and one that, to use his words, "they hang their hat on," so I asked him what sandwich he would recommend and he told me that when it comes to pork, he'd suggest the butterfly pork chop sandwich. So I ordered the tenderloin and the butterfly pork chop sandwich.
I had the sandwiches cut in half and figured I'd eat half of each one this night and then do to the warm up test the next afternoon for lunch.
The tenderloin looked good, but check out this butterfly pork chop sandwich, it looks amazing! Daryl told me they marinate the pork chop and it looks fantastic!
Here's the breaded pork tenderloin all dressed up with onion, pepper and mustard. It was good...
But it was no match for the butterfly pork chop sandwich. Marinated, flavorful, juicy pork on a bakery fresh bun, it doesn't get much better than this, folks!
For dessert I decided to try the 312 beer, here's Ryan pouring the beer from the unique tap.
Cheers and big thanks to Daryl, Ellen, Ryan and everyone at Sky Harbor for yet another memorable evening at one of Peoria's legendary night spots!
Okay, here we are one day later and it's time for the warmed up review.
The sandwiches are brought back to life underneath the magical MBIP broiler.
They tasted great the next day, so great I ate them up before I noticed that this photo is a little blurry and there was no chance for a second shot unless I got an X-Ray of my stomach. We'll see you all tomorrow.
Butterfly Porkchop Rating
The tenderloin here is good and tasty, but no match for the butterfly pork chop sandwich that’s also offered on the menu, and is a signature Sky Harbor dinner entry. Here’s my suggestion, go to Sky Harbor, get the butterfly pork chop sandwich, enjoy Chris Tarpley at the piano bar till closing time, then head on down the road to Kenny’s Westside Pub for one of the best tenderloins in the world and then have a nightcap at Jimmy’s Bar. That’s making wise use of the Farmington Road Entertainment District!