March 12, 2010

Last Chance Bar and Grill

By Eric Shangraw

July 13, 2010 Updated Jul 13, 2010 at 2:30 PM CDT

Budweiser and Southern Comfort may not be the first two drinks that come to mind when you think about breakfast.
But they are both menu options at a saloon that serves eggs in the morning.
We are at the "Last Chance Bar and Grill" in this week's You Gotta Eat.

Nicknamed the "Alta Tap" the Last Chance Bar and Grill sits right across the street from the head of the Rock Island Trail on Peoria's north end.
By night, it is a bar hall and pool room. In the wee hours of the morning, it's still a bar that happens to also serve the first meal of the day. You can toss back a frosty Old Style with your ham omelet.

"I think they do a very good job of transitions between breakfast and lunch to the bar atmosphere. If you come here on the weekends, you will see lots of families. It is more like a restaurant than a bar, said customer Jim Emanuels.

. "I work construction. There is a lot of guys who come here on rain days or before work. They open at six in the morning. They have great biscuits and gravy," said customer Ronnie Hamm while drinking a frosty cold one.

"Do some order beer and bacon?" I asked breakfast bartender Katrina Haynes.

"Sure do. We get a lot of third shift workers from Caterpillar going home. So we get beer and breakfast."

The bar's been here since the 1950's. The Skillet Breakfasts on the menu are top sellers. Photographer Dave Janssen and I each ordered the Country Skillet.

It comes with diced green pepper and onion, sausage, two eggs cooked to order with hash browns or American fries. The assemblage is sent to your seat smothered in homemade stick to your ribs sausage gravy.
There is not struggle with decision making: like do I start with the eggs and then eat the sausage, or bite into the hash browns and then lick the gravy?

No brain power needed. Just start excavating from plate to pie hole and you'll taste the potpourri of breakfast flavors.

We pondered doing a shot of Jack Daniels with our toast. But decided against any a-m inebriation. (We still had another five hours on the company clock.) With orange juice and caffeinated drinks, our bill: 17-dollars plus tip.
Now I have a new excuse to go the bar before work without getting in trouble. The Last Chance is near the intersection of Allen and Alta Roads. The kitchen is open for breakfast and lunch seven days a week. They stop serving food in the afternoon. The bar is open until two am.

Last Chance Bar and Grill
2713 W.Second St.
Peoria (Just west of Alta and Allen Roads)
Hours: M-F 6am-2am
Sunday 7am-2am
Sunday 8am-2am

Kitchen closes at 3pm. Serving breakfast and lunch only. (They are trying to secure a beer garden license and may serve fried food later in the day soon.)

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