Burger Bar

Restaurants, Hamburgers River North
  • 5 out of 5 stars
(6user reviews)
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Burger Bar

Who’s scared of a burger? Me. I’m scared of a burger when it’s listed under the heading “urban stackers,” named “Hey Shortay” and touted as featuring short ribs, warm onion and fennel slaw. And when a server informs me that the short ribs are not in the burger but actually on top of them? I’m terrified.

Who’s scared of a burger? Me. I’m scared of a burger when it’s listed under the heading “urban stackers,” named “Hey Shortay” and touted as featuring short ribs, warm onion and fennel slaw. And when a server informs me that the short ribs are not in the burger but actually on top of them? I’m terrified.

But I should have been more scared of the fries. The Shortay may be a stacker, but it’s a pretty manageable portion. And slapping meat on meat? Not a terrible idea, actually. The juices from the ribs and the sweetness of the slaw made for a burger that needed not a single element added to it: no ketchup, no mayo. Not even a pickle.

(Speaking of pickles, here they’re breaded and fried, and they’re pretty good. Much better than those aforementioned scary fries, which arrived warm as if just out of the oil but nevertheless tasted days old.)

Chef John McLean opened Burger Bar (and the pizza restaurant next door, Sono Wood Fired) after many years at Levy Restaurants. With a background in corporate eating and a penchant for calling his eateries “concepts,” it’s fair to assume these places are prototypes. Will there one day be an Urban Burger Bar on every corner? Or at least on the handful of corners that don’t already have “urban” burger joints? Possibly. And Chicago wouldn’t necessarily be worse off if there were. But nor would we be any more urban (this place drips with a suburban brand of trendy), and nor would our cravings for incredible burgers be fully satiated. These are not incredible burgers. They are incredibly decent. All beef burgers can be made with grass-fed beef (for a $3 upcharge), and the refreshing and slightly spicy tuna burger is made with sushi-grade tuna. Nice touches. Still, gourmet this isn’t. So put them on every corner, I say, and let’s have Urban Burger Bar as our city’s official backup plan to cooking and/or finer dining. Now that’s a concept.

The former name of this restaurant was Urban Burger Bar.

By David Tamarkin

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Burger Bar says
From our original stackers to a build-your-own burger, Burger Bar offers Chicago's most delicious burgers as well as fantastic appetizers and mind-blowing shakes. But make sure to try one of the many excellent craft beers on draft or bottle and make a night of it!
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Posted:

Venue name: Burger Bar
Contact:
Address: 1578 N Clybourn Ave
Chicago
60642
Cross street: between North Ave and Weed St
Opening hours: Lunch, dinner
Transport: El stop: Red to North/Clybourn. Bus: 8, 9, 33, 72, 132.
Price: Average main course: $10
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Average User Rating

4.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:5
  • 4 star:1
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|6
1 person listening

The chicken burger with arugula and pesto aioli is to die for! The prime grind patty is like eating steak on a bun...Mmm


The chicken burger with arugula and pesto aioli is to die for! The prime grind patty is like eating steak on a bun...Mmm


I have been to both of these locations and each one if awesome. Order the Hot & Smokey but sub the Prime Grind Patty to add a Steak taste to this already amazing burger. Order the Sweet Potato Tots and you are in for a burger dining experience. If you are there on the weekend order a Bacon Bloody and enjoy the games. Yahoo was right when they voted this place the best in all Illinois.

moderator

The burgers aren't going to change your life, true, but they're creative and solidly executed. The menu changes often, and there's always a special Burger of the Month. With a strong selection of beer on tap, reasonable prices and friendly service, Burger Bar has secured a place as one of my go-to options when I'm going to Steppenwolf down the street.