Okay, it’s Tuesday and that means it’s time for another installment of Peoria Hot Dog Wars, where I’m searching for my favorite hot dog in Peoria. We have a guest war correspondent this week, Tony Moreschi, owner of Khaki Jack’s is stopping by and he’ll be driving today. I haven’t seen Tony since I stopped there on my bar crawl over three years ago! My how the beers...I mean years have flown by!
Tony suggested we try a spot called, Vertucci's in East Peoria and said we’d be able to have a beer there with some dogs, sounds good to me! They’ll be doing battle with last week’s winner of the wiener wars, Lou’s Drive-In. Now all we need is Tony to show up. Oh, Tony...
Here's Tony, right on time! Tony informed me that he found out at the last minute that the designated hot dog destination, Vertucci's, is now closed. After a quick beer, we decided to try a place nearby that specialized in Chicago Dogs.
Check out Tony's car, we're riding in style today!
And we're off in search of this week's hot dog. It'll be tough to beat Lou's from last week, so we'll see what this Chicago place has to offer up.
Here we are and it's closed. I'm amazed at the number of bars and restaurants that are closed on Sundays in Peoria. It's like they have no idea this is my only day off! Don't they realize the world revolves around me? Time once again to improvise.
We got back on the road and saw a bar just a couple blocks down the street that caught our collective eyeballs.
Joe's Sports Grille, you know a sports bar is going to have hot dogs...and more importantly, you know there's beer here. I think we've found today's battleground for this week's hot dog wars. Let's go inside and check it out.
Wow, it's huge in here! Let's go step up to the bar.
There's a couple of seats front and center at the bar...
And more importantly, there's a beautiful bartender named Jesse behind the bar with an ice cold bottle of Budweiser for Tony and I. She confirmed that the bar has hot dogs and that the kitchen is open till 9PM so we have plenty of time to relax and take a look around. In the end, things always work out here at MBIP!
Cheers from Tony and I!
The bottles are lit up behind the bar.
And there's a decent selection of taps back there as well.
And here's a list of them on this chalkboard.
Brown wooden and leather booths line up the walls behind the bar.
If you're into the gaming and gambling machines, they have a casino here in the corner of the bar. I'm not a big fan of the machines, but I appreciate the effort they put into this rather than just dumping them in along a wall, but I think I'll head back to the bar.
Back at the bar, Jesse told Tony and I that she had moved back to Peoria from Chicago where she was involved with theater and acting. She said she's thinking about moving to Los Angeles down the road.
Here's Vicki and Doug who were seated nearby and were telling us about different trivia contests around town when someone thumped me on the back...
Okay, Jesse's shift is over and here's the bartender for the evening, Adam. As you can see, he's quite the talented face puller! I decided that it's time to let the Hot Dog wars begin and placed tonight's order, a hot dog with mustard and a chili cheese dog. Ringo, sound the battle drums!
Here's the owner of Joe's Sports Grille, Andrew. Yeah, I thought his name would be Joe too, but what are you going to do?
And here come the hot dogs, let the war games begin!
They look fantastic and the poppy seed buns are a nice touch...but wait a second...what's that on the chili dog...
Oh no! They have beans in their chili! This is an argument I've debated over the years time and time again, beans do not belong in chili! Especially on a chili dog! I fucking hate beans. I've always hated that song about beans being a "magical fruit." First of all, the last time I looked, beans are not a fucking fruit, they're tasteless orbs of bullshit and they have a weird consistency to them that really feel weird in your mouth. Well, being a professional hot dog war correspondent, I guess I have to try to carry on with the judging. But let me just add this: Beans do not belong on a fucking hot dog!
Okay, let's try the mustard dog. The bun is really soft and as I said earlier, I like the poppy seeds on them.
It's a really good hot dog, but I just can't stop thinking about the fact that...
They put beans on a hot dog...aaahhhhh!
Hot Dog War Status
Hot Dog Rating
Half an Oscar Mayer Wienermobile...beans do not belong in chili...especially on a fucking hot dog! Having said that, Joe’s is a great bar with friendly people and the fries were fantastic. Stop by, have a beer or three but beware of the chili cheese dog, it has beans on it! Aaaahhhh!
Bonus Linkage: Chris Erikson’s Website!
My friend Chris Erikson has a new website. Chris is a talented musician and writer and he and his band, The Wayward Puritans, appeared on my past blogs, A Guy Walks In To 365 Bars, Marty After Dark and Tripping With Marty. And now they’ve appeared here, maybe someday they’ll play in Peoria, time will tell! In the meantime, check out Chris’ CD, Lost Track Of Time, it’s filled with great tunes and you should have a copy in your record collection right now! Anyway, here’s the website: Chris Erikson Dot Com.