Our mission at The WheelHouse is to serve the Central Illinois community with the highest quality Farm-to-Fork fare. Look for delicious and nutritious 'comfort food' based on New American Cuisine -- a melting pot of all cuisines and techniques. The WheelHouse brings a unique and eclectic dining experience to the warm community of St. Joseph.
We are champions of the local food movement by supporting organic farming, sustainable agriculture, and community-supportive agriculture. The WheelHouse restaurant will procure local products whenever possible to showcase the amazing products grown right here in Central Illinois. Chef Ryan Rogiers has a nose-to-tail philosophy, a spiritual philosophy based on making the most out of the ingredients and treating them with respect. The WheelHouse will feature a seasonal menu with local beers, and small batch wines and spirits.
OWNER / GENERAL MANAGER / HEAD CHEF
Chef Rogiers is a Culinary Arts Instructor at Richland Community College and is a graduate of the California Culinary Academy located in San Francisco. Chef Rogiers previously worked at Alinea, a Chicago restaurant ranked 1st in North America and 6th in the nation by S.Pellegrino. Alinea was awarded the James Beard Award during Chef Rogiers time there. Chef Rogiers is a farm-to-table driven chef and believes in using the freshest ingredients along with the proper techniques to create a vision on the plate. In 2013 Chef Rogiers and his son won a national healthy recipe contest put on by the White House. He and his son flew to DC to attend an official state dinner with The First Lady and President of the United States.
OWNER / FRONT OF HOUSE MANAGER
Abbie Layden-Rogiers serves as Owner/Front of the House Manager. Abbie is a graduate of the University of Illinois and currently a real estate agent with Coldwell-Banker in Champaign. Abbie and Ryan have deep roots in the St. Joseph-Ogden area and want to bring a positive addition to the community.
To support our mission of incorporating local flavors, The Wheelhouse partners exclusively with Willow Creek Farm in Urbana. Willow Creek Farms is located about 2 miles outside of Urbana proper and lies on 37 acres of gently sloping land amid a smattering of areas homes and abundant farmland. It’s a working farm: cows, chickens, goats, horses, and sheep range in rotational pastures feeding openly on the healthy alfalfa and hay that Illinois’ soils provide. A small greenhouse and garden area grow seasonal fruits and vegetables for the restaurant’s use. Bees pollinate area crops and provide natural, nutritional honey. Willow Creek is fully licensed: with an Illinois egg broker license, and through both Illinois and the USDA for meat production.
Willow Creek Farm is thrilled to be able to add to the Central Illinois farming heritage and linking the community to our On-the- Farm opportunities.