Live, from Peoria, Illinois, it’s Saturday Night Cheeseburger starring this week’s host, Sky Harbor Steakhouse and featuring the Ready for Prime Beef Player, Marty Wombacher. And now, please welcome, all the way from West Peoria near Farmington Road, Sky Harbor Steakhouse!
Okay, it's Saturday night, I just got off from work and time to let the weekend begin! We're off in search of yet another cheeseburger...
And tonight's destination is the Sky Harbor Steakhouse in West Peoria, located just off Farmington Road. MBIP pal, commenter and co-pilot Al Rizo recommended I stop here a while back when I first announced I was moving back to Peoria. I haven't been in here for over a decade, but I'm sure it's still a classic Peoria place.
The bar is open, let's go get a beer!
And it's through the double doors we go.
I love the stone wall in the front room of the restaurant.
Let's go through the swinging doors and see what's happening inside.
Here's the main dining room, very nice and it hasn't changed a bit!
I love the dining rooms here, but I love the bar even more, let's go belly up to it!
And no sooner do I sit down than Sky Harbor owner, Daryl Klusendorf comes over and says hi. Daryl's parents, Bill and Ellen purchased the place back in 1971. The original Sky Harbor was located in Bartonville and they've been in this location off Farmington Road since 1996. Daryl's a great guy, a friendly host and knows most of the customers in here by name.
Daryl is an active member of the FRED association, which is an acronym for: Farmington Road Entertainment District. This district begins on Main Street at Bradley Park and proceeds west to Sky Harbor Steakhouse, and rolls along towards Kenny's West Side Pub, Crusens, Best Buds, The Trolley, Cams, Oscar's Restaurant, Jimmy’s Bar, Dave’s Goodtime Billiards, Bond Performance Cycle, Raber Packing Company, Juke Box Comedy Club, Peoria Speedway, Pulse, and historic Rocky Glen Park. Be on the alert for stops at all these places in the future here at MBIP.
While I was chatting with Daryl, bartender Ryan served up a beer. And they keep it all in the family here, Ryan is Daryl's son.
Martini glasses hang underneath the painting and hover overhead at the bar.
Located in the back corner is the piano bar/lounge area featuring...
Daryl joins Jimmy Binkley for a couple of tunes. In addition to running the restaurant, Daryl's been a local musician for years and was a member of the Flying D'rito Brothers which formed in 1988.
Daryl's musical roots go back to his grandmother, Gerda Larson, pictured here on the wall at Sky Harbor. Daryl told me she had a radio show on KSUM which broadcasts from Fairmont, Minnesota from 1946 until the late Eighties.
And here's another musical relative, Daryl's aunt MIllie Kittleson pictured with her band, Millie and the Saddle Pals. The band was inducted in the West Rock Country Hall of Fame and they've toured with Roy Acuff and appeared on the Grand Old Opry. She still performs occasionally and stops by Sky Harbor from time to time.
Okay, let's head back to the bar and see about tonight's cheeseburger!
Okay, the table is set, looks like it's just about...
Cheeseburger time! Wow, this one looks like a beauty!
Delicious! A great cheeseburger!
I also got one of the signature side dishes, the au gratin potatoes. As good as they look here, they tasted even better!
A marvelous cheeseburger dinner! Thanks to Daryl for being such a gracious host and we'll see you all tomorrow.
Sky Harbor is famous in Peoria for their sizzling steaks and cheese-covered mushrooms, but if you order the cheeseburger, you’re in for a wonderful surprise. It’s a lean, eight ounce burger topped with melted American cheese and served up on a toasted bakery fresh bun. I don’t know why every place doesn’t toast their buns, it always takes it over the top for me. I also got one of their signature side dishes, the au gratin potatoes and they are the best au gratins in town, in my very humble opnion. The potatoes are thinly sliced and swim in a river of tangy melted cheese, delicious!
As I mentioned, Sky Harbor is famous for their sizzling steaks and they feature the following cuts: Top Sirloin, New York Strip, Rib Eye and Filet Mignon. If you’re not in the mood for a steak, they also serve ribs, chicken and seafood. Jimmy Binkley tickles the ivories on Wednesday and Saturday nights and every night you might find a spontaneous jam session in the corner of the restaurant. Sky Harbor is definitely an iconic Peoria bar and restaurant, filled with unique characters and fun times.
Three Wimpy’s, a tasty cheeseburger.