Peoria Restaurant Review: Hearth in the Heights
This one’s been waiting for awhile, but I’m finally getting around to it. And it can be more professional-like, because I’ve been there several times now, for lunch and dinner, like a real restaurant reviewer.
We were in Chile when we got the horrible news that June Restaurant was closing. We didn’t go often, actually we went once a year. It was our go-to anniversary splurge place. So when we got back to the states and our anniversary came around, we had some serious decision-making to do.
One thing we like about June was its focus on sustainably raised & in many cases local food. When it opened it was perhaps unique in that regard, but I had been keeping up with things, and knew there were a couple of new places that had a similar focus. We basically were deciding between Hearth & Edge, and for whatever reason Hearth won out.
Hearth is among the area restaurants straddling the line between upscale casual and fancy, and they do it well. The restaurant feels cozy and comfortable whether you’re going for the casual or more elegant approach; they list lunch as casual and dinner as elegant, but this being Peoria you can make it work for you either way.
Every time I’ve been the service has been good: attentive without being overbearing, helpful when you have questions, and generally a wait staff that enhances the dining experience.
But all the good service doesn’t help if the food’s no good. Fortunately Hearth doesn’t disappoint. For both lunch and dinner the portions are reasonable and the food is delicious. Even though I’ve been there several times, it’s been a while and I didn’t take notes, so specifics may be a little sparse, but here goes anyway.
At our first dinner I had the lamb, because I rarely have the opportunity. While some of it was a bit rarer than I would have liked, the flavor was fabulous and there was enough for lunch the next day. As you can see from the pictures, there was also a yummy potato au gratin, and apparently we had calamari steak as an appetizer which I recall as being quite delicious.
I don’t remember what Cecile had, and apparently didn’t take a picture, so she’ll have to share in the comments. Something to look forward to, eh?
The lunch pictured was a catfish poor boy (po’ boy?), also quite delicious and as you can see it comes with a little salad so it’s healthy. Looks like my lunch companion (hi Yona!) had a burger, and I’m sure it was delicious as well. As you can see, we drank instead of appetizers or desserts.
Short but sweet, right? The Peoria area has more than its fair share of independent, locally owned and run restaurants. And some of them are jumping onto the local/sustainable food movement, which is pretty awesome. Hearth has been around for a few years now, and hits those buttons that we find important when choosing a destination for our rare meals out. Great food, local where possible, and locally owned. What more could you want?
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