Well, we’re now past the teens and into week number 20 of our 52 week tour of sandwiches in and around Peoria! Since this is somewhat of a monumental number, it was decided a road trip was in order for this sandwich outing! And whenever there’s a road trip, there’s always...
A knock at the door...but wait a second...Billy Bush? Sorry, Billy, we know you just got shitcanned from the Today Show and you’re looking for another gig, but we’re waiting for someone else, you run along now and maybe the Donald will pick you up in his election bus! I hear that there’s some Tazewell/Woodford County blog that no one looks at and they might be looking for a spokesperson, maybe you two can go work on that!
Alright, this is more like it, it’s Scott Turley, MBIP Pal, Contributing Writer and the MBIP official Wheelman! Time to hit the road!
And it’s off we go as Scott steers us towards the city of Delavan. I told Scott, I don’t think I’ve ever been to Delavan, so I’m looking forward to seeing it this afternoon and check out the water tower over there, it looks like we’re here! Time to park and check it out!
Here we are at The Exchange Public Saloon on Locust Street and the place looks really nice! Let’s go on in...but first, an obligatory mirror shot in the front door! Okay, let’s start this 20th week of sandwich tomfoolery!
Wow, it’s really nice in here! Very spacious and look at the sign: “The Kitchen Is Open.” Perfect! And so is the bar and that’s JoJo behind it pouring out the first beer of the afternoon!
JoJo suggested her favorite sandwich off of the menu, so that’s what I ordered and Scott got something else. There she is putting the order into the register which will magically be transferred back into the kitchen.
As you can see, there’s a decent amount of draft beers on tap here behind the bar and that led both Scott and I to wonder what the hell ever happened to Spike who suggested we take these tap shots in the first place. You out there Spike? Spike...Spike...Bueller...Bueller...Bueller...
Even though we’re in Delavan, Peoria is represented at the bar via this Peoria Brewing Company beer glass! The wooden bar in here is really nice and I like the single bulb lights hanging overhead. The bottom photo is a shot from the back of the room.
There’s tables opposite the bar and lots of interesting things on the wall to look at including vintage pictures, artwork and animal heads!
A wine shop is located just off from the dining area and its worthy of it’s own post, but this is a sandwich stop, so here’s just a few shots of the place.
There’s another room on the other side of the bar which is the Exchange Game Room. This is another huge room with a full bar, pool tables, big screen TVs, a shuffleboard player and on this day, there was live music too! Matt Ellis was playing tunes up front and he sounded great. You can check out his facecrack page right here.
Meanwhile, back at the main bar...
It’s almost sandwich time, but first Scott and I thought we’d try some wings for an appetizer. These are their Housemade Hot Pepper Wings and they were really tasty! The hot pepper sauce had a nice flavor and a slow and spicy burn after you take a couple of bites. Both Scott and I agreed it was worth the drive just for these wings!
But this is a sandwich post and here’s our two sandwiches! The top photo is Scott’s Reuben sandwich and mine is below which is the Beef and Cheddar sandwich that JoJo recommended. They both look amazing!
Scott said his Reuben was fantastic and he wrote a review of the sandwich and here it is, take it away, Scott!
“I love Reubens. It's probably it's one of my favorite sandwiches. I feel that you can tell how good a restaurant is by how good their Reuben is. The Exchange didn't disappoint. The brisket was slow cooked with a bit of a smoky flavor and tender enough to melt in my mouth. It had just the right amount of swiss cheese on it and instead of sour kraut, it had mustard braised cabbage on it. And it all sat on home made swirl rye bread. The cabbage and bread really made this sandwich stand out from others. It came with thousand island dressing on the side, but I never use it. I could go on a rant about how thousand island doesn't belong on anything but I won't. Just think about how Marty feels about beans. The Exchange's reuben is well deserving of three and a half Dagwoods. But I gotta tell you, it's worth a drive to Delavan just for the wings.”
Scott offered me a bite of his Reuben and as tempting as it was, I had this monster of a sandwich to plow through! There was so much beef and cheese, I had to have a few forkfuls of it before I could pick up the sandwich!
I can see why JoJo recommended this sandwich and why it’s one of the most popular sandwiches on the menu! The beef is so tender and tasty and the melted cheddar cheese sauce is really rich, creamy and has a little bit of a zing to it as well. The caramelized onions and toasted pretzel roll really top it off well and this was such a delicious sandwich!
And I ended the post the way I started it up at the top, with an obligatory mirror shot. I think this is one of the most perfectly balanced obligatory bathroom mirror shots ever and that fills me with happiness! Thanks to JoJo and everyone at The Exchange in Delavan for a great afternoon and some delicious wings and sandwiches! And thanks to Scott for driving and hanging out for the day! We’ll see you all tomorrow!
Three and three quarters Dagwood Bumsteads—This was one hearty, rich and savory sandwich! The beef was tender and juicy, the melted cheese was creamy and the bakery fresh pretzel bun really made this a great sandwich. And as Scott noted, the chicken wings are worth the trip alone, but when you add in this kind of a sandwich, you really need to take a trip to Delavan soon!
The Exchange in Delavan
315 Locust St
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