The Rhythm Kitchen Music Cafe is a fun dining experience right on Peoria’s Riverfront.
Boasting an excellent menu, service and overall atmosphere, the Rhythm Kitchen was opened by Shelley Lenzini in 1999.
The idea of the Rhythm Kitchen was envisioned in the hopes of bringing home-cooked culture and live music to Peoria’s dining experience.
On weekend nights, the Rhythm Kitchen features live jazz and blues bands from the area.
The night I went, The Flying D’Orito Brothers were performing. The band covered everything from the Beatles to Bowie, and were very talented and entertaining.
While weekends are almost always booked with performers, Wednesday nights at the Rhythm Kitchen are open-mic nights where pretty much anyone has the opportunity to perform.
Obviously a fun place to work, the Rhythm Kitchen has a friendly, efficient wait staff. That’s a big make-or-break for me as far as restaurants go, so it really scores points there.
At one point, one of the chefs even grabbed a tambourine hanging from the pot rack and began playing along with the band as we all clapped along.
At the Rhythm Kitchen, I ordered a “California Dreamin’” pizza, which includes mushrooms, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, pesto sauce and cheese.
One of my friends ordered the Monterey Tortilla Casserole, which was a blend of chicken, corn, salsa, cheese, tortilla chips and tomatoes. My other friend ordered the Veggie Wrap, with fresh vegetables, hummus and salsa served in a flour tortilla.
Since the food is all made fresh to order, the wait for our food was pretty long.
Our waitress came by after about 20 minutes and asked if we were interested in ordering an appetizer since it was taking longer than normal. We agreed and ordered a basket of chips and salsa.
It turned out to be a blessing in disguise – the salsa was some of the best I’ve ever had.
We finally received our entrees, and they were all really good and worth the wait.
The menu at the Rhythm Kitchen is very diverse, ranging from seafood platters and steaks to fruit platters and mini-pizzas. The price range is moderate and affordable.
The specials vary each night, and the dessert menu is also diverse and enticing.
One downside to eating at the Rhythm Kitchen on a weekend night is that it is extremely busy. The place is pretty small, so it was difficult to find a table.
When we did, there was barely enough room to move around in our chairs.
Naturally, weekend nights are busier than weekdays because of the live music.
If you’re interested in a more laid-back dining atmosphere, I would suggest going on Wednesday nights for open-mic night. The music is great and adds a lot to the experience of dining there.
Even though the restaurant was packed, it was fun to be surrounded by a bunch of other people just eating, drinking and having a good time.
When we were ready to pay for our meals, I asked the waitress how much our chips and salsa were going to cost. She told us because we had to wait extra long for our entrees, our appetizer was “on the house.”