It was October 1, and fall seemed to be descending upon us rapidly. But, it was one of those beautifully sunny fall days that made for perfect riding — and the perfect Sunday Funday adventure.
Since BikerSpot Magazine was hosting Sunday Funday at Carrigan’s Pub (a place we had yet to try), we were headed down the valley and across the river to East Peoria. And since it was the ideal autumn afternoon, what better route to take than the curvy, climby road through Detweiller Park?
The trees had just started to turn, a forest of color about to emerge. Ah, fall riding. I could almost forget the coming winter. Almost.
The crisp air meant a short ride, so we made it to our destination in no time. Like most of the places we visit ahead of a Sunday Funday, Carrigan’s was full of life. Instead of reading the menu, I got lost watching the staff hustle and bustle around the bar preparing for the day’s festivities. At some point, I realized I needed to focus and got serious about my lunch order.
The menu at Carrigan’s is impressive, with more than a dozen appetizers, two dozen sandwiches, multiple salads and a few larger dinner options.
It took me forever to pick something (that was a lot of menu to read), and when I did, it was a complete indulgence — the Lucky Horseshoe.
Of the available proteins, including hamburger, corned beef and turkey, I chose the Philly steak (without green peppers and onions, of course). The toast was nearly impossible to find under the generous layer of cheesy goodness but was thick and buttery when uncovered. The homemade fries were crisp with a slight saltiness that cut through the cheese sauce in just the right way to keep it from overwhelming your palate.
He chose a different cheese-based option — the Swiss Mushroom Burger with a side of homemade chips. The half-pound patty was smothered in grilled mushrooms and melty Swiss. Unlike many typical mushroom and Swiss burgers, this one was served with lettuce, onion, tomato and pickle on the side, a nice touch that added a fresh snap to the sandwich. The chips also were tasty, crunchy and salty — exactly how I like them.
After lunch, we hung out and listened to JuJu Jonny play for a while before calling it a day. The sun was high in the sky at that point, the ideal time to ride home while enjoying the warm, soothing sunshine.
Note: Carrigan’s Pub is located at 5506 N. Main Street in East Peoria, Ill. It opens at 11 a.m. Monday through Saturday and at noon on Sunday.