Ray's Family Diner has been in operation for many years but unless you live in the area, you may not have heard about it. Not only is it off the beaten path but it is hard to get to. Begin by traveling north on old US route 66, north of Springfield, IL. You'll notice Ray's on your left as you approach Sherman, IL. Take the next left turn, travel a short distance then the next left turn again. A few hundred yards and you're there.
The clean, airy feeling as you enter makes for a relaxing experience. We were there on a recent Sunday and they had a choice of buffet or order from the menu. We chose the menu, which had an excellent selection. The biscuits and gravy were very good, real sausage gravy. Eggs were cooked to order and the hash browns were chrispy. My "Breakfast Shoe" (known only in the central Illinois area) could have been better. The "shoe" is supposed to be made with a cheese rarebit sauce that has a distintive flavor. The sauce on mine was more like a canned cheese wize.
Service was only so-so. One waitress and a cook helping with the orders. Our orders took a little longer to arrive than normal. For a group of five, the food should have been delivered at the same time. However, that was not the case. Four of us were halfway through our meal before the last order was on the table. There were perhaps 15 customers seated at the time. An additional waitess may help, or an extra cook.
Overall, a pleasant experience. If this had been our first visit, we might have taken it off our list but having been there before, we accepted the fact that sometimes there are glitches. We'll try it again in a month of so.
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