Tuesday, October 18, 2005


So Monday night found myself, the wife, her friend Steph and all of our's friend Jarrett at Avanti's up on Main Street.

Even people who come here for a visit remember the name Avanti's. What wonderful bread you have, you Italian cheapo-bistro you!

Cheap is the indicator here. And by cheap, I mean good prices, not tawdry or weakened or anything like that. Besides ordering a pizza, is there an entree on the menu over $7.00?

This place has the run of everything pasta, as long as you're okay with meat sauce, marinara or alfredo. You want fancier? I suggest Ponte Vecchio. Rizzi's is good, too. But i'm getting off track. We're talking about Avanti's.

Spaghetti, linguini, tortellini, ravioli, some meatballs, maybe a piece of chicken breast. All makes for decent eating. The spaghetti sauce tends to stay with you for a few hours longer than you want. One single burp lets the entire neighborhood know that you dined out tonite!

Pizza's are good, too. Not thick, not thin. Right there in the middle. I've always liked the sausage and black olive pizza. Me and my old buddy Scott used to order those up quite a bit, so there's probably some sentimentality clouding my judgment. It's a far sight better than the Pizza Hut's, Domino's and Papa Johns.

But, of course, they've made a name for themselves with their famous sweet bread, and especially the Gondola. Former Peorians who come home to visit the loved ones will, on occasion, fill a cooler up with Gondolas for their eating enjoyment at home, wherever that may be. I've noted this happening with MANY different people. The guts of a Gondola are simple-lettuce, American cheese, ham and salami (mayo and mustard optional), but when thrust upon that sweet, yummy bread? It's like a chewy heaven.

Eaten tonight-a 6" sausage and black olive pizza (guess who), pizza burger (sauce, meatballs and cheese) X 2, pizza bread deluxe, or whatever they call it (onions, mushrooms, green pepper, pepperoni, cheese, some kind of sauce), and the Monday night special-all you can eat linguini for four bucks! Just awesome!

This place is suggested if you're not in the mood to cook but don't have a great deal of money. Hey! Which describes me! And most everybody I know, too.


Angie said...

My husband introduced his college buddies from SIU to Avanti's way back in the day. To this day, every time they come to visit they have to have Gondolas and cheese soup-together for dipping purposes.

jenny w. said...

I love that cheese soup. It rocks! Can't go wrong with those gondolas either..and the garlic cheese bread is just dandy!