Sunday, April 18, 2010

Kuma's Corner

Last night we went to Kuma's Corner, a burger place in the Roscoe Village neighborhood of Chicago. This self-described heavy metal burger joint is not for the faint of heart. No,'s not.

Peter had been once before and proclaimed it the best burger he ever had. EVER. So when our friend Amy from CBS made plans to come to town and said she wanted to go, of course we were in. I checked out the website yesterday, and they have rules. For the most part, restaurants that have rules turn out to be pretty awesome.

But, first, Some information for when you get here, to make your trip enjoyable for all. Including us:
1) We do not take reservations.
2) We will not “put on the game, bro”
3) No music requests.
4) No Minors after 10pm.
5) Our kitchen is only 16×6. Please be patient.

This probably counts as a rule, too. Kind of.

Our group of four (Jacquilyn came along for the ride, too) arrived at about 6:30 or 6:45. Upon opening the door, a blast of heavenly burger-scented air mixed with extremely loud heavy metal music hit us. We approached the hostess, told her (actually, yelled at her) that we had four people, and her response: "Ok, that will be about two and a half to three hours." Sigh. But that's alright, we were in it to win it, so we stepped outside to regain our composure and made the dive back in to get drinks at the bar.

Kuma's, like most other Chicago establishments, has an excellent beer selection. This is really a beer drinker's town. They had Three Floyds Gumballhead on tap (well actually, last night they were out...but it was on the menu and they usually do) as well as one of my favorites, Allagash White. They had a nice list of bottled beer too. And, this is crazy - they also have Jack Daniels and Woodford Reserve bourbon on tap. Hardcore. I would have taken a picture, but I felt like it was a "hippie" thing to do and I might get carried out of the place by two big tattooed guys named Thrasher and Ox.

So after waiting somewhere between an hour and an hour and a half, a miracle happened. Not one, not two, not even three, but FOUR seats opened at the bar - together! We swooped in, and prepared ourselves for a feast.

So that's only about a third of the list of burgers. As you can see, they're named after heavy metal bands. I went with the Black Sabbath, Amy ordered the classic Kuma, and Peter and Jacquilyn ordered two to share - a Kuma and a Pantera (roasted poblano pepper, bacon, cheddar, monterey jack, house-made ranchero sauce, and tortilla strips). And we got mussels to start.

The mussels came in a broth of beer, garlic, butter, and chiles. And that bread was nothing short of amazing. Crispy, buttery, and very salty. We easily polished off the mussels, and after waiting awhile our burgers arrived. Here's the Black Sabbath:

I was worried it would have a mountain of chili on it, but it didn't. It was the perfect amount, under a blanket of melted cheese so it stayed put. The blackening spice added a nice kick, and the red onion was a perfect complement to all the spiciness. Maybe the best part - the pretzel bun. It was so soft but didn't fall apart under the weight of the burger. And as you can see, they serve waffle fries with their burgers. Wow. Here's Amy's Kuma burger:

I had a bite, and the fried egg was really good. So it was basically a bacon, egg, and cheese on a roll...with a half pound burger.

Whoa-ohhh, we're halfway there! There's a nice cross-section of my Black Sabbath burger. I couldn't finish it. These things were HUGE. I did make a dent in that second half, but we took the rest home along with some fries. Amy had to give up, too:

The burger morgue. But we brought it back to life and put the rest of her burger in our doggie bag. The group consensus: best burgers ever. So what's their secret? I think they must inject their patties with butter and magic, because they really were that good. Or maybe it was the pretzel bun. I don't know, and I'll probably never find out...but I'll be back for more.

1 comment:

  1. AH! That looks amazing, you have to try Thurmans when you're home in Columbus and see if they compare.