It’s hard to believe but it’s time once again for our monthly MBIP Contributors Luncheon get together. A new restaurant has opened up downtown on Adams Street called Sugar and they bill themselves as a wood-fired bistro. MBIP pal and PJ Star writer, Steve Tarter wrote about the restaurant last week and you can read that right here. It sounds like a great and unique new restaurant, so I thought it would be a good place to treat some of the MBIP Contributors to lunch. Okay, let’s jump in the MBIP mobile and go get a hunk-a-hunk of burning lunch!
And we're off. There's the downtown Peoria skyline from my windshield point of view on I-74.
I'm not even in the door yet, but I'm impressed already, it looks cool in here.
Once inside we're greeted by Jessie on the left who's the manager of Sugar and Dennis Slape who owns the building, but he's quick to point out, he doesn't own the restaurant, we'll meet that gentleman soon. Dennis told me this building has been standing here since the 1930's and it was originally a grocery brokerage warehouse. Later it morphed into a YWCA and now it's Sugar. Sweet!
Here's the star of this new restaurant, their wood-fired stove. It was imported from Italy and the temperature in there gets up to 1000 degrees fahrenheit which makes for some fast cooking.
Here's Andy behind the counter who's the head chef here at Sugar. Um, Andy...I think you've got the wrong shirt on...but that's okay!
They have an impressive set of taps here, I think they'll get a good rating on the Spike-O-Meter ratings system. Time will tell.
Here's the dining area, it's has a rustic urban feel to it with the brick and wood theme going on.
And don't let these empty tables lead you to think there's no interest in Sugar, because...
Five minutes after I took that shot, the place is filled up and there's not a seat to be had. Pretty impressive considering they've only been open about two weeks.
I had heard there's crowds here, so I reserved a table in the back room. I think I see some familiar faces back there...
MBIP Contributing Writers, Mike Foster and Scott Turley have pulled off the impossible dream and have beat me to the table, even though I'm half an hour early. Nice to know that a couple guys are even nuttier than me!
And here's our next MBIP guest and contributor, Brandon Hovey.
Chip Joyce showed up next...
The gang's all here. In absentia are: “Boris” Boden, Gene Rubbico, Bob Gordon, Jaws the Cabbie, Paul O’Connor, Bob “Whale” Miller and Jeff Putnam. Some day it's my dream to get all the MBIP Contributors in one room.
And here he is with chef Andy whipping them up.
The first course is served up...
This is a Nutella Smores Pizza, which is out of this world good. It's impossible to describe, you just need to get here and taste it. MBIP pal, Alex Mcleary wondered a few posts ago what a Smore was, well, as they say, every picture tells a story, mate!
The other entree that Travis offered up was Mediterranean Queso with Herbed Flatbread. As good as it looks, it tasted even better. The food here is off the chart tastiness!
At Sugar you have to order up front here at the counter and as you can see, it's pretty busy up here. ..
But in spite of all the business, Kitrina posed for the MBIP camera and flashed a pretty smile while taking our orders at the same time. What a multi-tasker!
And through the miracle of the internet, seconds later our half dozen orders appear.
Both Brandon and Mike got the meatball sandwich. Here's Mike unveiling his sandwich for the MBIP audience.
Scott got the Buffalo Wings which he shared with me and they were amazingly tasty and good.
Mark got a pepperoni pizza.
Chip got the Smokey Pork Chipotle Pizza and let me try a piece and it was so good. If you've never had pizza from a wood-fired oven, you need to check this place out.
I got the mac and cheese and this is the small size! If you're hungry, come in and try the large order, it must be served in a bucket! Mac and cheese is one of my favorites and I can testify that this is the best I've ever had. It's got a crunch on the top and savory cheesy smooth delights below.
It was another fun lunch with some of the MBIP Contributors. We'll do this again in about thirty days.
There's sweet and tasty treats up here in the front counter to balance off the savory fare, but we were too full to sample them. Maybe next time! See you all tomorrow!