Firehouse Grill and Diner - Carbondale, IL

On recommendation from Jenny, a friend of Jake's on Facebook we went to Firehouse Grill & Diner in Carbondale tonight - 5 adults with 3 kids.  There were all of 2 other people in the restaurant at dinnertime on Saturday night.  Sorry, but I recommend NOT going there:


  • we were seated right away, plenty of open tables & high chairs
  • after selling out every piece of furniture and kitchenware in Mom's house this weekend, we were happy to have a table, chairs & silverware for all of us!
  • all of our meal orders were correct
  • hungry babies screaming for food didn't bother anyone -- no one was there
  • we had lots to talk about during dinner (and after) as we joked about the (lack of) service
  • the food was good - not thrilling, but good.


  • open since June 10th, and already they were out of regular tea, shrimp, MGD and bleu cheese dressing -- on a Saturday night.
  • it's attached to one of the sketchiest hotels in Carbondale - was once called the Knights Inn
  • the waitress was obviously VERY new to waitressing - like since June 10th.
  • she only brought out one plate at a time, and forgot whose meal was for which person.  There were 10 people in the restaurant - 8 were at our table -- and she was carrying one plate at a time -- couldn't she check at the counter?
  • our meals came slowly, and we had to ask for kids meals early when Paxton was screaming and throwing his head down on the table crying for food
  • Mom's margarita sat on the counter for at least 5 minutes before she started to get up to pick it up herself & the waitress finally brought it over - warm.
  • the rib-eye steak was super-thin and was the same price as a HUGE t-bone steak
  • Jake was served expired Miller Lite beer (and they JUST opened the restaurant June 10th)
  • had to ask for a spoon for screaming hungry baby's applesauce
  • ordered a loaded potato, which came with no butter or sour cream
  • had to ask for sour cream, butter & steak sauce
  • there was no changing table in the bathroom
  • and to top it all off...when the waitress delivered the check, she stood directly behind Grandpa, watching over his shoulder while he calculated her tip!

We would have had better service if we walked into an ACTUAL firehouse and ate with the firemen.

Thanks Grandpa, for an entertaining dinner -- glad your steak was the biggest.

And, thanks Jenny. What other restaurants do you recommend that I can avoid? :)

4 comments so far:

Lauren said:

Thanks for the review! I have never been there before so I will have to check it out. How would you say it compares to Charbonos? I am in LOVE with their salads and appetizers.

Prlinehan said:

Ben took the words out of my mouth... well, not about not blaming Jenny, but about eating at a restaurant attached to that hotel.  I think that would be enough of a deterrent for me.  I don't know if it's still there, but there was a Burgers & Cream in Marion (near the baseball stadium) that was pretty tasty.

RLO05 said:

Oh I just hate it when there's no changing table in the restrooms...and have you ever run across one that actually has the liner thing that your supposed to lay down under your kiddo?  I have yet to see one.  In fact, I don't think they exist!!!

Ben said:

Don't blame Jenny.  You should have known better than to eat at a restaurant attached to the Knights Inn.

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