May 6, 2010

Bernadotte Cafe

By Eric Shangraw

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

One of the smallest communities in Fulton County is on the Spoon River.

Bernadotte has only on e restaurant: the Bernadotte Cafe.

Eric Shangraw is there for lunch in this week's You Gotta Eat.

The Bernadotte café is a hub for information in and around Bernadotte.

In a town of approximately 50, its food has a following drawing customers from miles around.

Juicy gossip and home cooked daily specials are the ingredients keeping the little hamlets eatery open.

"It is a meeting place. You come and sit around a table and talk. Food is good," said customer Carol Miller.

"These people come here more than once. They come two or three times a week. Most our farmers so they know they are going to get a good, filling meal," said manager Elizabeth Callear.

Entertainment around here is limited. But they do have hummingbird feeders in just about every window. So you can sit and watch the little guys go up and down and drink the nectar while you eat your pie.

Photographer Larry Faulk ordered the top selling tenderloin. I measured it. The breaded beast was one and a half times the size of his cranium.

Back in the kitchen, eat loin is rolled, dipped in eggs then in a cracker meal with untold seasoning and then brought through the process again. The attention to detail made for a tasty, hearty and almost impossible to manage meal.

I had the skillet. Breakfast is served all day in Bernadotte. My eggs over easy came on a bed of hash browns, onions, green pepper and corn beef hash. A fine and filling farmer meal for the morning.

Larry tailed his tenderloin with fresh strawberry shortcake. Superb.

I had rhubarb crunch pie. Homemade. Thick crust. Tart filling.

With drinks and coffee our bill $24.75 plus tip.

After lunch we headed outside to check out the Bernadotte damn. Then we soaked in the sun at the adjacent park. Didn't want rush back to work before letting the dessert settle.

The Bernadotte café is open 8am to 8pm six days a week. They close on Tuesdays to restock the kitchen.

Bernadotte Cafe
6500 E. Tarters Ferry Road
Ipava (Bernadotte)

Hours: 8am-8pm
Closed Tuesdays

(309)753-1910

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