by Jessica Snyder
Joey & Gina’s opened last week in Peoria, near Arrowhead Harkins Theater.
The original restaurant opened in 1937 in San Francisco. The idea behind starting the establishment was to offer quality food offered in large portions at a reasonable price.
Through the years as Joey & Gina’s has expanded, they have remained true to the history as well as adapting to the changing times.
The atmosphere inside this establishment is very relaxed. Patrons can visit with family, friends, business associates or on dates and everyone will feel welcome.
The newest location has a classic feel too it. The colors are gray, black and unique teal color.
The lights hang down from the ceiling and create an atmosphere of comfort and luxury all together. The floors are stunning. Gray and black patterned wood floors set off the black table tops.
The menu has just the right amount of choice. Diners can order pizza, steak, sandwiches, salad, pasta and more. There is a choice for everyone, but it is not overwhelming either.
Meret Patrenos, page designer of The Voice, and I decided to try “Joey & Gina’s” on March 5. We visited the restaurant around 11:30 a.m. and there were few people dining. Our waitress, Jennifer Patane, was attentive and knowledgeable. Our drinks were refilled without being asked and she checked on our table often enough to show interest in our dining needs, but not so much that it was annoying.
We were also visited by Steve Pugh, owner of “Joey & Gina’s” about half way through our meal. He came around to all the tables to ask how we were doing and how our meal was. I greatly appreciate when owners are involved in their business in a hands-on way. Pugh impressed me with his care and concern for the patrons of his establishment.
General Manager, Fred Metzger, showed great enthusiasm for his job and the restaurant. His smile is infectious.
I ordered salami and pepperoni pizza and it was divine. The sauce was tangy and flavorful, the cheese was perfectly executed to the point where you pull a slice and the strings of cheese linger on the pie as you pull it out. Delicious.
Patrenos ordered Fettuccine Alfredo and also enjoyed the generous portion.
Patrenos also thoroughly enjoyed her meal and experience. We were both impressed and would recommend this restaurant to friends and family.