First up, don’t forget to enter my giveaway for a headband from K@tastrophy Designs. Right now there’s only one entry so as a result I’m going to be extending the entry deadline until NEXT Friday July 13th! Hurry up and get your entries in for a chance to win an awesome headband!
Remember back in May when I ran that marathon? Well, I took the following Monday off work as a recovery day. I wasn’t sure I’d even be able to get out of bed to go to work, and even if I could get up, Saturday, my usual my errand running day, had been kind of busy. Since we were off, Nik and I made tentative plans to eat at Kuma’s Corner in the city as a post-marathon celebration meal. He’s been hyping up Kuma’s (and we’ve been talking about going) since before we were ever dating.
Here’s the thing: Kuma’s Corner is pretty much legen…wait for it…dary. It’s pretty much always busy, and you can wait hours for seating during peak hours Having a Monday off gave us the perfect opportunity to visit without having to bring snacks to tide us over while we wait. And while it took us more than two years to make the trip up there, we managed to make it there again a few weeks later when a friend of his was in town.
There are a few things I think you need to know before heading to Kuma’s. First and foremost, it’s a heavy metal themed bar and burger place. It’s also the size of a shoebox. They’ve got about a dozen tables in the whole place, and the max number of people per table is 6. If your party is large than 6 they split you up at two tables. If you’ve got 5 or 6 people, there are only two tables they can seat you at, and, as I learned during my second visit, you’re pretty much screwed on wait time.
My first trip up there Nik and I waited somewhere around 30 minutes before we were able to grab seats at the bar. (I learned that this is the secret to getting a seat quickly: hover near the bar and snake your way in as soon as someone’s ass vacates his or her chair. Of course, this really only works well for groups of 2 or 3.) Our second visit was a group of 6 people, and while the place was practically vacant when we arrived, we waited nearly 2 hours for one of the two six person tables to open up. The wait times can be bananas, but the food is totally worth it.
The burgers are well-crafted with unique and perfectly balanced flavors. In fact, Kuma’s so strongly believes in the flavors of their burgers that one of their “house rules” is no substitutions. Oh, and the burgers all get their namesake from heavy metal bands. If burgers aren’t your thing, the build your own mac n cheese is just as good as the burgers!. On top of tasty food, they have a craft beer selection is hard to beat.
For lunch I went with the Lair of the Minotaur. A PBR marinated burger on a pretzel bun topped with caramelized onions, pancetta, brie, and a bourbon soaked grilled pear. I have to admit, I was a bit skeptical, and I was intimidated by the brie. But this, This was absolute burger bliss. Every bite was amazing. I ordered the house made chips on the side, and they were also amazing albeit a bit on the greasy side for chips. At first prices seemed a bit high $13 for a burger and fries, but I chalked it up to the fact that everything is more expensive inside the city limits. Then I was actually served, and holy cow the portions were huge; I easily could have gotten two meals out of what arrived on my plate.
On our second visit I got to experience the mac n cheese. We ordered it as an appetizer for the table with bacon and caramelized onion. The mac n cheese is just as good as the burgers. Rich and cheesy and creamy and delicious.
Overall all, I totally get why people love this place. It had been hyped up to me for nearly two years, and my extremely high expectations were definitely exceeded. I was impressed by every aspect of this place. I can see how the metal attitude of the restaurant could be a turnoff to some, but that’s the whole point. And I think as long as you show up with the expectation of extremely long wait times, then they’re not really a big deal. I probably wouldn’t come here regularly (mostly because of the wait times), but it definitely warrants a return trip.
Pros: One of the best burgers I’ve ever had; Great beer selection; unique burgers
Cons: Long wait times; Not necessarily a “scene” that appeals to most people.
Would I come back? Without a doubt. Heck, I went twice in the same month!