Recently I found myself staying down by the Harrison El Stop kind of by accident. I was pretty much desperate for something to eat and ended up at the South Loop Club, a kind of half dive bar half sports bar, I quite liked it.
I will be honest and say that apart from a cold beer or two I was not expecting too much food wise so I played it pretty safe and selected from the South Loop Club Burgers section of the menu.
This was to be a pretty good move as both burgers that we ordered ended up being pretty decent affairs.
The SLC (South Loop Club) Burger
I was going to just get the Mushroom Swiss Burger, but at the last minute I caved into the moment and decided to give the SLC special a whirl. The ‘South Loop Club’ special (to give you it’s full name) is an 8oz Broiled Burger topped with Sautéed Mushrooms, Cheddar Cheese and ‘Crazy’ onions. I didn’t really know what the crazy onions were going to be, but as it happens they were just thinly sliced onion rings. In other places I have seen these called ‘frings’ as they are kind of a combination of ‘fries’ and ‘rings’. To be honest they were a bit ‘meh’ so I just pulled them out of the bun and turned them into a side. For some reason the SLC seemed to think that I wanted some sort of children’s plate as they served me a portion of curly fries as well. What was that all about?
OK but the burger? Yes the burger was pretty good, the patty had been cooked on the open broiler so you got all that charcoal type flavour and lots of smoky juice. I asked for it to be medium and that was how if came. Really well seasoned and a really good solid bite that mixed with the soft mushroom and the molten cheese was just what I needed. I was washing this down with a pint of 312 and that was also a pretty good accompaniment.
The Bacon Cheeseburger
My Companion played it a little more simple and ordered ‘The Cheeseburger’, which as you might expect was a Burger topped with cheese. So OK it wasn’t the most amazing gourmet cheese on the top, it might have been just a simple slice of Cheddar cheese, but sometimes that is all that you need. He appeared to have enjoyed it as well, he even liked the curly fries. I have no further comment on that part of his enjoyment.
The menu describes the South Loop Grill as ‘An Intown Bar and Grill with Neighborhood Flair’. Well now I am not sure about that, it wasn’t any kind of club that I have even been into, but it seemed to be an OK kind of place to hang out for a while, drink a beer and eat a burger, while watching the sports on one of their many televisions.
It is within easy walking distance of the Harrison El Stop on the Red Line, and the Orange Line rattles by overhead as you walk along the streets outside. You can easily spot the place as it has a great big sign and awning outside. If you are down this way I would say that it is a pretty safe bet and worth popping in for some simple fare and sustenance.