Live, from Kickapoo-Edwards Illinois, it’s Saturday Night, starring this week’s host, PIzza 150 and featuring special guest stars, Artie and Sandra. And now, please welcome, all the way from Kickapoo-Edwards, the host of this week’s show, Pizza 150!
Okay, we’ve got a ride tonight and there it is! Inside are my friends, Artie behind the wheel and Sandra is in the back seat so I can sit shotgun in the front seat, very nice of her! Great to see them both, as always and it’s off we go on this rainy Saturday night. But hey, it’s not snow, so I’ll take it!
It’s a quick trip to Pizza 150, it’s just outside of Peoria in Kickapoo-Edwards, Illinois. I love the look of this place, it’s really got an old-time charm to it plus its got a little bit of a roadhouse feel to it.
There’s no sign outside that has Pizza 150 on it, but there is this vintage Pabst Blue Ribbon sign out front that you can’t miss! I also love the Spuds MacKenzie neon sign in the front window. Okay, it’s still raining out here, so let’s get inside and start this week’s Saturday Night!
It’s really nice in here and I love all the hanging lights from the ceiling and the wooden tables that line the wall. Looks like Artie and Sandra have gotten our table and as I sat down, our pretty waitress, Jodi was delivering us some cold drinks! Our night is off to a great start already and Artie noticed that Jodi looked a little like a young Kristen Wiig! A real "separated at birth" moment!
There’s Artie and Sandra all settled in at the table! We checked out the menu and ordered tonight’s meal. While that’s being prepared, I grabbed the MBIP Camera and abandoned Artie and Sandra to go take some pictures over at the bar, which is handily located just opposite from our table!
Here’s a shot from the end of the bar and I love the wooden ceiling in here with the suspended lighting hanging just below it. There’s the quartet of beers on tap, with one of them being Pabst, giving a nod to Peoria’s past. Tara and Beth were seated at the bar and smiled prettily for the MBIP Camera! Then I ran into Diane, who’s family owns the bar now and she’s standing with Danielle and Beau. Diane told me that while this place looks like it’s been here forever, it’s actually a brand new building that they built here when they had to tear down the original Gilles Tap, which was the oldest operating tavern in Peoria County. The Gilles family generously donated photos for Pizza 150 to hang up which keeps the memory alive. The photo below is part of the crew that work here, from left: Grant, BIlly Ryan and Katie. There’s a Kickapoo jersey that the Gilles family donated and below that are two more photos from the Gilles. The first one is a photo from New Year’s Eve, 1949 and the gentleman on the left is Frank Boswell. Below that is a black and white portrait of Norma Gilles, who was married to Tom Gilles, the original owner of Gilles Tap. Norma was a beloved person in this area and a lot of people referred to the former tavern as, “Norma’s.” Nice to have her portrait in here smiling down at the new place! As I took a shot from the end of the bar, I saw Jodi bring the first course to our table, so let’s head back over there!
Here’s Jodi bringing on the appetizers! We got an order of the Pretzel Sticks and the ‘Shrooms and they brought us a sampling of one of their signature dishes, The Breaded Perch Filets. The Pretzel Sticks were served with warm cheese dipping sauce and spicy mustard and I really liked the spicy mustard, it really complimented the pretzels nicely. The ‘Shrooms were crispy on the outside and the mushrooms inside were juicy and fresh and they were served with Ranch dressing for dipping. The Breaded Perch Filets were a nice treat, the were well-seasoned and tasty and the special recipe tartar sauce that came with them was delicious! I don’t know if I have room for any more after all of this, but I’ll try!
There’s an entire room off from the front bar and dining area right though this door. The kitchen is back here and there’s a Devin McGlone chalk art board with the entire menu on it. Beneath the chalk art is a car bench made by Rachel at Stray Cat design. A lot of Pizza 150 has been built using re-purposed wood and materials.
There’s another dining room back here and the hostess station here was built by David Neal. There’s wooden tables (all the wooden tables were made by Josh England) and booths back here and in my travels I spotted Katie taking a dinner break at one of the tables. She was having a plate of chili-mac that looked really good! Speaking of dinner, let’s head back to the table because I have a feeling it’s just about time for the main course to be arriving!
And I was right! There’s Jodi delivering a Cod Sandwich to our table and she’s already placed our pizza there as well! The sandwich looks so tasty and the pizza looks out-of-this-world good! I let Artie order and he chose to go with the works! We got a supreme which is loaded with toppings and just to make it more interesting, Artie ordered it with extra cheese and sauce! This is one top-heavy pizza and it looks and smells heavenly!
There’s Artie with a piece of pizza and I let mine cool for a few minutes and then I dug in. This pizza is really tasty. The toppings are all fresh and the cheese is rich and creamy and blends well with the homemade sauce which is on the mild side, but still packs a lot of taste to the pie. The crust is thin and it’s Pizza 150's original crust recipe and it’s crispy and holds up to all the toppings without getting soggy. This is really a great pizza and I look forward to sampling some of the other styles in here.
But for now, this one is all gone and we’re all stuffed! Thanks to Diane, Jodi and everyone at Pizza 150 for wonderful hospitality and a great meal! And special thanks to Artie and Sandra for driving and hanging out for the evening, it was a blast! We’ll see you all tomorrow!
While the name of this new restaurant/pub is titled, Pizza 150, there’s a lot more than pizza on the menu! There’s a large selection of appetizers and we chose the Pretzel Sticks and ‘Shrooms and they were both excellent starters for our meal. I especially liked the spicy mustard that came with the Pretzel Sticks.
As you peruse the menu you see a lot more selections including a 150 Burger, a Pretzel Dog, Italian Beef, Turkey Club, Chicken Tenders and Breaded Perch Filets. They generously gave us a sample of the Perch Filets and they were flaky, tender and delicious and the breading was nicely seasoned and crispy on the outside.
Sandra ordered one of the signature sandwiches on the menu, The Cod Sandwich and it looked delicious. The bun was nicely toasted and the cod was lightly breaded and came with a lemon herb dressing that Sandra said complimented the flaky and tasty sandwich nicely.
Artie and I had to sample the pizza, so we split a Supreme Pizza that comes with the works on top—olives, mushrooms, onions and peppers. Artie also ordered it with extra cheese and sauce and it was really a delicious pizza. The crust is made using Pizza 150's original recipe and it’s thin and crispy and it holds up well against the toppings and it doesn’t get drowned in the tasty sauce on the pie.
There’s a lot of history in this location and the new owners have stayed true to the memories and it’s nice that they’ve incorporated photos and memorabilia from the original Gilles Tavern here.
Three and a half Galloping Gourmets—They just opened up in December and it’s already running like it’s been standing on this spot for decades. You should go and check it out soon!
9919 W. US Highway 150