Bring up good hamburgers in Chicago, and DMK Burger Bar is likely to crop up almost every time. I was curious to try it and got together a group of girlfriends recently to take on the menu — from the mac and cheese to the infamous burgers.
One thing that distinguishes a DMK burger from others right away is the thickness of its patty. The patties are thin and cooked medium — that’s the deal. No exceptions that I saw, and there were enough of us dining that evening to order almost everything on the menu. The waitress even mentioned the thin patties — still I was thrown a bit when my bison burger, topped with fresh goat cheese, pickled red onions, and blueberry BBQ Sauce, was thin. A bison burger shouldn’t be thin, should it? Especially with all of those unique toppings.
Regardless of their lack of heft, all of the burgers I tried were tasty, including the marinated portobello, with blue brie, scallions, and dijonnais; and the classic with iceberg lettuce, tomato, raw onion, bread and butter pickles, mayo, and choice of cheese. I’ve also heard the veggie burgers are good, although we didn’t try one. (Note: Any burger on the menu can be made a veggie burger.) But are they Chicago’s best burgers? I don’t think so.
Now the Parmesan truffle cream fries — those are worth a big shout out. They are so good that they’re worth going to DMK for. I also enjoyed the mac and cheese. There was some disagreement at the table as to which was better — the aged cheddar with Parmesan crust or the Gruyere, smoked bacon, charred balsamic and red onion, but I think both were quality, and it just comes down to personal preference — do you like your cheese sharp or mild? Also the macaroni part of DMK’s macaroni and cheese wasn’t macaroni at all, but a corkscrew pasta that I think holds topping and cheese better than macaroni.
For dessert we had chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches. Fun in concept, but not standout.
If you’re in the mood for a beer when you go to DMK, ask the staff for recommendations and sample their favorites. They know their stuff and thanks to them, I unearthed a new favorite myself — Brother Thelonious Belgian Style Ale, a dark, complex brew that’s well-balanced.
Note that DMK doesn’t take reservations, so go early. The staff is very accommodating and with the burgers ringing in at $8 each (with a few specialty exceptions), the combo of good service and good food priced right makes for a fun, affordable evening.
And now seafood lovers can enjoy the DMK experience too! Apparently, the folks from DMK opened a new fish place in Lakeview yesterday, and I can’t wait to try it. The Fish Bar, located right next door to DMK at 2956 N Sheffield Ave, serves up seafood fare in a variety of regional styles.
DMK Burger Bar
2954 N Sheffield Ave
Chicago, IL 60657