WTGW 1/29/20: Barrel Lodge Bar & Grille, Streetsboro


Hey, it’s January in Ohio, let’s go to … the golf course?

Well, I mean, it’s pretty much guaranteed to not be busy, right?

Also can you tell we’re a little sick of your crap, Mother Nature? One week we’re at a tiki bar, and another we’re at a golf course. If you listen carefully, you might hear us trying to tell you something.

Just a thought.

But seriously, how can you not go to Barrel Lodge Bar & Grille no matter what time of year it is, when they post amazing photos like this on their Facebook page?

Patio picture included for wishful thinking, since obviously we didn’t dine there this evening. Or even glimpse it, seeing as it gets dark at like 5:30PM these days.

Still looking at you, Mother Nature. Yes, we’re bitter. And cold.

The one décor item that we would suggest Barrel Room may want to step up, though, is their outdoor lighting game. I mean, while I get drawing attention to yourselves to stand out on the obsessively dark road this place is located on, the neon white lights they chose to frame the front windows screamed more pay-as-you-go cellular in the bad part of town than classy golf course dining establishment with a log cabin décor and this impressive chandelier and fireplace.


How did we miss the memo that Truly was coming out with new flavors? Like, seriously, I don’t know how we haven’t reached influencer status with the hard seltzer water companies by this point, but someone needs to add us to the top of that email chain regarding new product launches. We love you. Please help us help you.

And to prove that point, our first review of the Mango Lemonade flavor is a thumbs up. There.

Meanwhile, the guys opted for the new PBR Hard Coffee. Which, yes, is apparently a thing. Maybe not a thing that the world truly needed or that we care to research any further after this juncture, but, sure, it’s a thing nonetheless.

Jason was clearly not a fan, although he gave it a valiant effort. Ted remarked that he wasn’t sure if the Peanut Butter Porter he ordered afterwards was somewhere on the “beer has gone bad” scale or just tasted odd because he sipped that PBR first.

So there you go.

Cassi and Jason got the loaded tots as an app.

They were really good, due primarily to the use of real cheese and not just that goopy bright yellow fake cheese sauce you usually find on fried apps. They were also crispy, which means that real cheese makes things less soggy. Score.

Shane and I got the fried mushrooms. They were giant, and also beer battered like our perpetual favorite, that giant basket of fried veggies you get at a county fair. You know, the thing that sounds like it has the potential to be healthy until it gets dipped in batter and hits the vat of boiling oil.

Ted abstained from apps since he had already decided he would be ordering a full meal … to which we asked when that has ever stopped him in the past?

Regardless, he got the perch dinner.

So, I’m not really sure how Ted felt about the perch part of that dinner, but I can say with certainty that the French fries were the clear highlight of his meal. He was in love with them.

Like, couldn’t stop raving about them. Like, the beginning of a new relationship where every minute thing the other person does is the best thing in the universe – i.e. “you should see how well she butters a slice of bread!” or “he is the best at remembering to use a turn signal, I just love him.”

I mean, during the course of our meal the group would collectively talk around the table about three or four other topics, only to then hear Ted chime in with a sentence that had nothing to do with those topics and everything to do with his fries – like “but I think they’re, like, rosemary flavored.”

We’ll just leave him in his own little world over there and come back to him at the end of the night.

Cassi got the buffalo chicken salad. She was a fan, said it was really good. And it didn’t come with 4000 olives, like last week’s unfortunate adventure. 

I mean, clearly not “Ted’s fries” level of good, but there seem to be few things in this world that can be.

Meanwhile, lest you think we forgot to have any chicken wings on our table, this week’s appearance of Healthy Shane meant ordering only 20 wings – 10 Garlic Romano and 10 Cajun. I say “only,” because normally that would be the side to his burger, pizza, or other actual meal of some kind. I think after he placed the order we all stopped and just stared at him, waiting for there to me more words to the sentence.

And of course no Wednesday is complete without an appearance by the other WTGW staple: burgers.

Jason got the Barrel Burger, which is essentially a fancy way of saying a cheeseburger with a few different types of cheese and something called “barrel sauce.” Before you ask, no, I have no idea what that is.

My mushroom onion burger didn’t have a fancy name, but I did add bacon to it and I feel like that made it fancy regardless.

I also got a side salad, because who can let Healthy Shane have all the low calorie fun in this family? Exactly.


While I’m sure this place gets busy in the summer, what with the golfing aspect and great patio that we’ve only seen photos of on the website and all, we would totally advocate going in the winter just as well. It wasn’t busy in the least on the night we were there, the service was great, and the food was very tasty.

Particularly if you love French fries – although you may want to wait for a night when Ted isn’t there, because I think, should we return, that may be all he orders. He said that he may be one of the few in the group that doesn’t do Top Five lists … but if he did, this place would be at the top for the fries alone.

That’s high praise.

While they may not have been making any Top Five lists, the burgers did rate high with the group – and succeeded in making Shane jealous when they arrived at the table and he pronounced them more appetizing than his wings, just on sight alone. He probably would’ve given the place a full thumbs up overall had he not gotten .. well, his entire order, I guess.

We also ended up visiting during Streetsboro’s Restaurant Week – which I guess is a thing, who knew? The table tent said to mention it when we ordered to get a percentage off of our bill, although when we tried the server waved us off and said that she was already planning to give us the discount. So it sounds like those printing charges on the marketing budget were well spent.

Picked by: Steph
Next pick: Ted

WTGW 5/24/17: Streets Tavern, Streetsboro


Sorry about that little hiatus, kids. Between vacation and some work travel, the month of May has pretty much been a blur. In fact, I almost forgot it was my pick this week. Thankfully I have this handy little blog to remind me where we were last. I knew we started this thing for a reason.

So after a week in the Caribbean with fancy resort food, and then another week in NYC eating mainly Italian and Mexican food (for no other reason than it was what we happened to find the most of when we were hungry), I was ready for some good old fashioned bar food.

I have to admit, Streets Tavern scared us just a little bit as we pulled into the parking lot. Call me crazy, but giant “FOR RENT” signs in the front window of the building don’t really scream “come on in and enjoy some food and drinks.” But we continued on toward the back of the small parking lot, and noticed the restaurant sign – and presumably the front door to the establishment – facing the building next door.

File that one under: non-intrusive marketing. Maybe they should think about renting that front half of the building, if nothing else than for a giant sign advertising their place? Just a thought.

Shane immediately picked up on the 15 large trucks in the parking lot and the country music that was playing from the time we walked in the door, and questioned how he had never picked this place. Hey, you win some, you lose some. Sorry buddy,

It seems like the place could use a bit of a remodeling overhaul. There’s a large bar at the back of the space, two pool tables at the far end near the door to the patio (which we didn’t get to check out tonight since it downpoured for most of our visit. Obviously Mother Nature and I are going to continue to not be friends again this patio season), surprisingly few tables, and then this giant space off to the side with a stage and disco lights. Which, I mean, when you have a band – as it seems they often do on weekend evenings – I can see that being valuable. But on a random no-band Wednesday, maybe you could turn off the spinny red laser lights and add a few more tables for those of us taking advantage of the .35 wing dine-in special? Again, just thinking out loud here.

We realized quickly that this is another of those places where the bartender is also the server for the tables, but not for any bad reason. In fact, she was great. Greeted us right away and came over to take our drink orders moments after we sat down at a table. Streets seemed to have a decent beer list for a smaller bar, although Ted was the only one to go that route. I chose the only cider they had – Angry Orchard – and Shane went with rum and diets. We’re very well-rounded in the alcohol sampling department these days.

As I mentioned, Wednesdays are 35 cent wing nights. And not ones to miss out on a special, that’s the route we all went. #frugal

I got the Spicy BBQ, Shane got the Garlic Parm and Ted just asked the server to bring him “the hottest ones you have.” Because, well, Ted.

But wait, we aren’t done yet … Ted also ordered the Streets Burger, and Shane got a pizza full of random toppings that he created himself for like $6. And we shared the “three-peat” appetizer, which we chose to include breaded mushrooms, breaded cauliflower and onion rings.

Clearly we’ve only gotten more healthy in our time away.

Fun story, after we placed our orders, some random guy approached our table on his way out of the place with a to-go bag, and asked us why we hadn’t gotten our food yet. Well, um, kind sir, we just ordered it like 5 minutes ago, so maybe the kitchen actually needs time to cook it? I mean, we appreciated his concern, but clearly none of us are starving here, we were happily enjoying our drinks … and we also knew we ordered a lot of food, so we weren’t expecting it lighting fast. We’re good, thanks.

He seemed to be happy with that answer, and ambled out the door with his meal. But then like 10 minutes later, he was back – minus the to-go bag – and it was like de ja vu as he inquired again what was taking them so long to bring our food out.

By this point we’re realizing either he’s the owner/manager of the place, or he’s just a bar regular who is holding some sort of competition in his own head as to whether or not tables will receive their food orders before becoming nothing more than a pile of skeletal remains.

The answer later started to lean toward the former, as he eventually told us that “whatever his girls were making for us back there was worth the wait.” And then proceeded to try and coerce us into joining a game of tabletop Jenga. Because that seems like what people should do while obviously teetering on the brink of starvation.

Ted: “Maybe he recognizes us and is trying to butter us up for a good review.”

Me, after the food arrived a bit later and the guy scampered over to make sure everything looked OK, then proclaimed that we weren’t kidding, we do order a lot of food: “That comment proves that he has no idea who we are.”

And we were OK with the wait, because for the most part, our meals were definitely worth it.

The wings were good sized for the 35 cent price. We all know that “weekly bar special” can sometimes mean they pull out the smallest pieces that seems to be taken from pigeons or half starved chickens … but these were instead quite meaty and well seasoned.

They aren’t really that color. Or at least we think not anyway, It was really dark in there.

BBQ sauce = bring extra napkins

My Spicy BBQ wings had a little kick to them, and Ted said whatever explosively hot wings he ordered were good also – but probably contributed to his idea that the burger was a little thin and bland in comparison.

Ted prefers wings cooked in whatever sauce drips directly off the surface of the sun

There’s a cheese-less, taste-less burger under there somewhere

Shane made it through all of his wings – as he said, they’re dine-in only, so he couldn’t waste any of those – but had to take a few slices of the pizza home because it was a little much for him. A little much? I mean, it’s only TWO FULL meals. WTF, quitter.

It’s not delivery OR Digiorno’s

But he did say that for a bar pizza – which sometimes can mean nothing more than throwing a frozen disc of cardboard coated in sauce and cheese into a toaster oven – this one was really good. All the toppings looked fresh, and the crust was done just to the perfect combination of crisp and dough-y.

Our appetizer was the only thing we were a bit disappointed in. Ironic that probably the easiest thing out of all of our meals to make – just throw stuff in the fryer – was the least liked. A few of the mushrooms and cauliflower were cold in the middle. And the pieces of cauliflower were really itty bitty, not like the kind you get with fried veggies at the fair. And clearly carnival food is the gold standard in terms of all things fried.

Guess which ones are done all the way

Probably the thing we liked the best about the app was the Streets Sauce that came with it for dipping, that was really tasty. Side note on that, that sauce is actually listed under the options for wings, and when I asked about it the server told us it was kind of a spicy, horseradish-y, mayo-y concoction, and she didn’t recommend it for wings. I can see now why. Just use it as a dipping sauce. Trust us on this one.

Our server was amazing. I know I said this already, but it definitely bears repeating for the great service we got from her. Case in point – how many times have you been somewhere where the server walks by you like 10 times and never takes stock of the level of your drink, and then when you flag them down to get a refill they act surprised? Yeah, not here. We were all impressed when, not long after our food arrived, she noticed from behind the bar that Ted’s glass was empty … and instead of coming over to ask if he wanted another one, then going back to pour it … she just arrived with another beer, and was like “I took a chance … I hope you want this …”

I think Ted almost asked her to marry him at that moment.

She also did her best to save us from our new BFF of the evening – the owner/concerned regular/random getting-drunker-each-time-he-approached-us observer who made it his mission to make sure we were having a good night in his establishment – when he came over at the end of the night to trap us … I mean, tell us a story about riding his Harley to work, then dropping the bike thanks to his recent double knee surgery (not alcohol, of course) that his insurance company is making him pay out of pocket for … and then the story started all started over again.

Is this the WTGW version of Groundhog Day?

But other than that small distraction, and the overall kind of weirdness of the setup of the space, the place has a great atmosphere. It’s definitely the Streetsboro version of “Cheers,” as everyone seemed to know or be related to everyone who came into the place … but no one made us feel like we had invaded the family reunion and shouldn’t be there. Word of warning about the music, though … we were happy with the new country selections we were hearing throughout most of our evening, but then around 9PM it was like the subscription to that playlist ran out and there was an abrupt switch to this mix of strange and unfamiliar 70’s love ballads that seemed to be controlled via the phone belonging to one of the owner’s friends. So that was a bit uncool. But other than that it was a fun place with what seemed to be cool people.

And cheap food. Other than wing night, we noticed a board touting specials like country fried steak with potato and vegetable for $6.99, a 5oz steak and potato for $5, and my favorite, the 7-9AM 35 cent wing special on Friday mornings. Because sometimes you just wake up with a hankering for chicken wings, folks. And now you know where to get them for cheap.

Speaking of cheap, our tab for the night – including Shane’s five mixed drinks, my four bottled ciders, an app, a pizza, and 20 wings, was right around $50.

Yeah, we’ll be back.

Picked by: Steph
Next pick: Ted
(note that thanks to another Cavs/Warriors showdown in the NBA Finals, the next few weeks could be hiatus for us while we recover from random late night game watching on other nights of the week. Hey, we’re old. And we have jobs. Adulthood is hard sometimes.)

Shane and the rare double thumbs up

Uh Ted, is the wall on fire behind you?


WTGW 4/22/15: Chugger’s Bar & Grille, Streetsboro


I discovered this place during the same high-tech internet search that brought us to the Happy Moose a few months back. So I guess by proxy I’m the official Streetsboro faction these days. Back off everyone, I got this area. Well at least for this pick anyway. Then we might be tapped out. Because, well, Streetsboro.

So, as if the name weren’t enough to imply it, Chuggers definitely has a bit of a sketchy vibe from the outside. First off, it’s located in an old strip plaza tucked away from the main road that has certainly seen better days – and hopefully more tenants at one point in time. Apparently when half the place moved out they took the maintenance service along with them, because the parking lot is rougher than the surface of the moon. And the sign is literally a vinyl banner pinned to the front of the building.

But there’s a kid’s jump palace next door, so that always bodes well for a really good dive bar, no?

However, we were pleasantly surprised when we walked inside, as it was actually really nice. I mean, for a bar. In a strip plaza. But in all honesty, the setup actually reminded us a lot of the Blue Willow over in Macedonia that we visited a while back. Except far bigger. Much bigger than I think any of us truly expected when we walked inside. It’s like the clown car of strip plaza bar & grilles.

At least that made it easy to find an open table, so score for us. It took a hot second for the waitress to come check on us after we sat down, but we was at least personable and admitted she was practically brand new, so we went a little easier on her. Shane ordered his usual rum and diet, and Ted settled on a Guinness – since that was about the fanciest they offered, not a lot of craft variety available there. I wouldn’t know, as Amanda and I stopped listening to the beer list after “Summer Shandy” – which lo and behold they really had on tap, not just a “we’ll write it on the sheet and trick you into thinking we have it but really we don’t” false alarm. Done.

I'm not sure you could get more opposite than this

I’m not sure you could get more opposite than this

Although I have to admit, just judging from the clientele that came in after us, I’m not surprised that most of their crowd is of the Miller/Bud/Coors variety. And not that there’s anything wrong with that – in fact, I would probably be more surprised to hear they had a plethora of ales, lagers and IPAs just chilling out on the tap system. Let’s just say that I felt out of place not wearing a hoodie. Again, not judging – just wishing I’d had time after work to leave the heels at home for this one.


The menu had a ton of options, but – unlike last week – at least this time they all seemed to fall into one of two categories: Bar Food or Italian. No random Greek appetizers or Mexican pizzas. Those only confuse people.

Options of deliciousness

Options of deliciousness

As usual, we ordered a crapload of appetizers, because, well, us. We ordered fried green tomatoes – because few things make Shane’s eyes light up like seeing the words “calamari” or “fried green tomatoes” on an app menu; mozzarella sticks – because I’m a sucker for fried cheese; and something called “monkey balls” – because that just sounds like something you need to order lest you be disappointed you never tried them. And because we’re 15.

Everything was good. Shane raved about the tomatoes, so much so that I decided (against my better judgement) to give them a try – only to realize that, yes, my aversion to the mushy texture of cooked tomatoes is still in full effect. Yay me. But the breading was good, I’ll give it that. Shane and Ted thought they were insanely good, which is really the review you want to remember on this particular item. The mozzarella sticks were basically no different than the kind you pull out of the freezer and throw into the fryer, but – hey – it’s fried cheese all the same so we weren’t complaining. The monkey balls – a mixture of Italian sausage, peppers, cheese and spices rolled up and deep fried – weren’t quite what we were expecting, but Shane and I still thought they were delicious.

There were a few more when they arrived. Fried cheese doesn't last long with us.

There were a few more when they arrived. Fried cheese doesn’t last long with us.

More fried food. Surprise!

More fried food. Surprise!

Ted didn’t quite share our joy, however, as apparently he missed the fact that the monkey balls (hee hee) had cheese in them until his first bite. There’s a fun surprise for the cheese hater at the table. Ironically the rest of us tasted no cheese whatsoever, so either he got the only ball that actually had any in it, or we’re just immune to the almighty power of fried cheese at this point. Especially in balls.

OK, I’m done being 12 now.

Balls. Enough said.

Balls. Enough said.

So our best takeaway from Chuggers – and really, the last few places we’ve gone lately – is that if the appetizers are really good, we should just stop while we’re ahead, order more of those, and not try anything on the main dinner menu. Because for the past few weeks we seem to be stuck in some sort of vortex that sucks us in with delicious apps … then drops us hard on our asses with disappointing dinners.

I’m not sure what that’s all about or what food god we need to pray to in order to reverse this curse, but it really needs to change.

Amanda ordered the BBQ beef brisket sandwich. In all honesty, she went out on a limb trying something new – but she was tired of ordering the same few familiar items on the menu, and we all agreed that sandwich sounded particularly delicious. But in the end it was a bad move, as she was disappointed. She just didn’t like the taste of it, and ended up leaving most of it behind. Even the fries weren’t especially good. Boo.

Lesson learned, stick to what you know.

Lesson learned, stick to what you know.

I had the beef & Swiss sandwich. I was thinking of ordering a panini or a stromboli, as they all sounded equally delicious – but once again I was led astray by the choice of bread, in this case seasoned sourdough. Damn carbs anyway. The bread was good, but I think there was more seasoning there then on the actual roast beef, as it was rather bland. The onion rings were fresh battered – a nice surprise after the freezer-to-fryer mozzarella sticks – but they also didn’t have much taste to them. I ended up taking half my sandwich and a few rings home.

Once again, carbs led me astray

Once again, carbs led me astray

Shane had ordered the monkey balboa panini – along with a side of six wings, because, well, his metabolism is un-human – but after hearing Ted quiz the waitress about the size of the stromboli, decided to cancel his original idea and go that route instead. So once again the boys ended up with the exact same meal – well, except that Shane did keep the side of six wings. Because of course he did.

And he was happy about that, as those wings were the best part of the meal for him. He said they were the best dry rub ranch wings he’s ever had. So there’s that.

The best part of Shane's evening

The best part of Shane’s evening

The stromboli, however, was disappointing – to both Shane and Ted. First of all, let’s just say that the waitress should not be trusted to give sizing approximations. The knowledge of which of course opened up the pathway to many jokes about certain other things for which size can be misconstrued – because, as we’ve already established, we’re 12 – but that’s a whole other conversation. Let’s just say that these definitely were not as big as she made them out to be in her description, and leave it at that.

Aside from the size, Ted’s biggest problem was the amount of cheese in the stromboli. Which, really, we shouldn’t be surprised about, because, well, first of all, it’s Ted … and second, after he was the one person at the table to detect the presence of cheese in the monkey balls, it shocked the hell out of us that he would even order a stromboli in the first place.  But I guess it falls under the same category of pizza, and something about how the mixture of it all makes it bearable. OK, whatever. Conversely, Shane said that he thought there was too much dough.

So maybe Ted should’ve donated his cheese to Shane, and Shane could’ve broken off some of the extra unfilled dough and given it to Ted, and they could’ve created their own perfect stromboli and both been happy?

Just an idea.

The underwhelming stromboli

The underwhelming stromboli

In any case, let’s just say that our opinion of Chugger’s tended to decline as the night went on. Just like our service. Many times we were left with empty glasses, and our waitress was nowhere in sight. Or she would come out onto the floor and wait on one table at a time, without so much as a glance around to see how the other tables were doing. Again, I know she admitted to being new – and she seemed to be one person taking care of a large area of tables – but the place also wasn’t jam packed either.

Now, a word of honest warning: Wednesdays are karaoke nights at Chuggers. Which excited us for a brief moment – you might be aware by now that “Shane Newton” is a sucker for karaoke, at least when it comes to one song in particular that can’t be sung when there are children in the establishment. But then we realized that the group running the karaoke business clearly has their own following of people/friends that accompany them to their gigs. And none of them can actually sing. None. Not a one. Which is weird, because I always thought there was some sort of audition process to buy one of those karaoke outfits, since that seems like it would be a prerequisite part of the business. You know, like how tax people really should be good with numbers. Or painters really should know how to color in the lines. That sort of thing.

But not this group. It’s like you could picture them all having parties together in someone’s basement, with some cheap tabletop karaoke system they bought from Wal-Mart, and all telling each other they sounded totally awesome … and then probably pooled together to buy some rig that someone was selling on Craigslist for cheap after the whole “hire us for karaoke at your wedding” idea didn’t exactly pan out.  Maybe they’re tone deaf. Who knows. The point is, there wasn’t enough alcohol in that establishment to make us want to stay once those people kept taking over the stage. No thanks.

So overall it was kind of a mixed review for our group. Had we just come in, stayed for a few apps and some drinks, never had actual meals – or our eardrums assaulted with horrible singers – this review probably would’ve been a little different. We definitely didn’t think the place was awful. And they do have a strong Browns Backers presence (as evidenced by the no less than 10 different items hanging on the walls adorned with the name and logo of the Browns Backers club), so I think we all agreed it might be fun to check out a game there. We’ll just stick to apps. And hope no one gets hold of a microphone.




















Picked by:  Steph
Drinks:  Amanda and I stopped listening after Summer Shandy, but Ted said he thought the draft beer list was severely lacking. Definitely seems to be a bottle/domestic kind of bar.
We’d have been better off to stick to a table full of shareable appetizers. This seems to be our luck as of late.
Service: OK at first, slower as the night went on. Our server admitted she was new, but it still seemed to take quite some time just to get draft beers from the bar.
Overall: Not as horrible as we all feared it could be when we first pulled up, but also probably not at the top of the must return list.

Next Pick: Amanda

WTGW 2/11/15: Happy Moose Bar & Grille, Streetsboro


Miss us?

So, yeah, we skipped WTGW last week because Mother Nature is a giant whore who graced us with a late afternoon snowstorm that tripled my commute time home and made it treacherous to even think about leaving the house again once I finally got there. Thanks for that. But because we’re alcoholics with no food in the house not about to let the weather get the best of us, we did venture out … only we kept it close to home and and just ended up at the semi-new Panini’s in Stow. But we didn’t think we should write about it because, well, it’s Panini’s. And everyone has been to a Panini’s before. So there’s that.


I stumbled upon Happy Moose the same way I find quite a few of my picks, in a random Google search for new places. Pretty high tech, I know. There’s a Mentor location that has been open for a little bit now, but the Streetsboro location is still fairly new. I read somewhere that it’s an old Eat n’Park. So even before we got there we knew it was an upgrade. And that we would have fun, because, let’s face it, “The Happy Moose” is just fun to say. I mean, come on. How can you not smile just saying it? Who can be grumpy when you ask them if they want to go to a place called the Happy Moose? It’s Happy for Pete’s sake. The first thing that comes to mind is a giant, grinning Bullwinkle greeting you at the door when you walk in.

Which, let me be clear, doesn’t happen. Yet. But you’re welcome for the idea, owners.

Right away we were impressed when we walked in. The place is huge inside, basically just one big space – but I like that it’s not jam packed with tables in every available inch. I hate when you practically have to crawl over a neighboring table full of strangers just to go use the restroom. There’s a giant bar in the middle of the space, and plenty of high top tables and booths. Also lots of TV screens, which immediately made me think we will be coming back to check out a sporting event of some sort there at some point. We asked our server later in the night what the atmosphere is like for games, and he said that unfortunately they really haven’t been open through any major sporting seasons yet to be able to judge. But I definitely think it has potential.

HM (for those of you scratching your heads right now, that stands for Happy Moose. Yes, I’m getting lazy) has an array of daily specials: Wing Night, Rib Night, Bucket Specials, Appetizer Specials … you get the idea. Wednesdays happen to be $3.50 tall domestic beer nights, so score for us. Although I have to admit we were intrigued by the Thursday “Buy your burger and we’ll buy your beer” special. I think we may need a “Throwback Thursday” visit back to HM just to see how that works exactly.

Beers all around for our drinks. Coors Light for Shane, Miller Lite for Amanda, Fat Tire for me and Irish Setter for Ted. For the second week in a row, Ted was surprised and impressed with the color of my beer. Hey, I’m not ready to go to the dark side with him yet, but I have graduated past the “see thru beer” stage.

Beer scale: See thru - wall of darkness

Beer scale: See thru – wall of darkness

It took us a hot minute to decide what to order for our meals, since the menu was full of delicious sounding options. And we actually didn’t jump right to appetizers this week, either. Say what? Who are we? Yep, the holidays are definitely over folks. It’s time to start thinking about those beach abs. You know, as we order burgers, fries and lots of beer. Good call.

As has become customary on WTGW, we asked our server what his favorite thing was on the menu. He recommended the burgers and the wings – which honestly didn’t help us, really, since both of those options sounded equally delicious. We all seemed to be torn between two choices on the menu.

I was torn between a burger and the steak philly. The bread on the steak philly almost won me over, because, well, I’m a sucker for anything different than a regular old bun, and the words “French baguette” are like a love song when it comes to my choice of carbohydrates. But once our server started talking about how good the burgers are I caved and went that route. And I’m happy to say I was not disappointed. I had the Moosey Burger, which aside from being fun to say, was downright delicious. It was messy as all hell, but so, so good. Bacon. Garlic aioli sauce. Cheese. Sauteed onions. Yum, yum, yum and yum.

I also opted for the sweet potato fries, which were good as well. Hey, say what you will, that’s my attempt at healthy when paired with a giant burger.

The lettuce counts as a partial salad, right?

The lettuce counts as a partial salad, right?

Ted was pretty solid on his decision to get the Tsunami burger – even though he was perplexed by the pineapple and claimed “that’s a lot going on on one burger.” (PS – let’s just remember this is coming from the guy who ate that giant heart attack on a plate at The Game.) But then, after hearing a story from our server about how the Big Foot burger sounds like something you wouldn’t possibly considering eating but is actually really good, Ted flipped his game and went with that option instead.

Somehow I managed to get all of that guy on the TV in the background in the shot, but only half of Ted

Somehow I managed to get all of that guy on the TV in the background in the shot, but only half of Ted

For the record, the Big Foot burger includes all of the following: a burger, 2 fried eggs, fries, bacon, cheese, peanut butter … oh, and it’s on French Toast instead of a bun. As Shane said, it’s essentially all three of your daily meals in one (eggs, bacon and french toast = breakfast, peanut butter – lunch, burger = dinner). It’s kind of like the McGriddle. Only on steroids.

Ted is most certainly going to die an early death.

But he did say it was good, so at least I guess he’ll die happy. He said it was definitely interesting – every bite was something different, he never once got all of the flavors together. One bite would be peanut butter and french toast, the next would be burger and egg, the next would be peanut butter and egg (which, um, ew? But whatever). Maybe he finished it all just to see how many flavor combinations he could come up with? You know, kind of like a high-calorie version of the “how many licks to get to the center of the lollipop” game.

That looks like ... well ... um ... oh hell, I don't even know

That looks like … well … um … oh hell, I don’t even know

Amanda was the only one of us that didn’t waiver from her choice. She stuck with the Cuban – her “safety net of sandwiches” as she calls it. I have to admit I was slightly jealous of that damn French baguette that it came out on, and it did have me doubting my choice until I took a bite of my burger. Amanda said she thought the Cuban was outstanding. It was very filling, with great flavor. And since she’s tried them at a lot of places, her stamp of approval definitely carries weight.

(BTW, those last few sentences really, really shouldn’t be taken out of context, lest they become a giant “that’s what she said” joke)

The non-burger plate at the table

The non-burger plate at the table

Shane was stuck in the age-old conundrum of burger vs. wings – and hearing the server say they were both good didn’t help him in the least. Shane also threw a rib option in there, too, but I think he was just trying to mix things up a bit. And hence began the intensive pre-meal interrogation of the server: “How are the ribs?” “How hot is the wing sauce?” And the age-old and ever popular, “How thick are your burgers?” Good times for sure.

He finally landed on the Inferno Burger, which has jalepenos, pepper jack cheese, and a fiery mango habenero sauce. So, the name is definitely appropriate. Shane said the sauce definitely had some heat to it. Actually, a lot of heat. About five minnutes after he finished his burger he said his lips were still burning. Thinking back, that could explain how his second beer was gone before any of us barely drank our way a quarter into ours.

I still can't believe people trust us with large knives

I still can’t believe people trust us with large knives

He also really liked the burger, as evidenced by the fact that 1.) he cleaned his plate before any of the rest of us even touched our second half of our sandwiches and 2.) for about the second time in WTGW history, his burger was actually done exactly as he wanted. Rare enough to not be burnt and dry, but done enough to not still be half alive. Praise Jesus.

And finally, we have a reference point for all of Shane’s future burger orders. Behold: the perfect rare burger.

I have a feeling we will reference this picture many times in WTGWs to come

I have a feeling we will reference this picture many times in WTGWs to come

Actually, quick sidebar: even if you have no intention of ever going to HM, the burger menu is worth looking at online just for fun. We commented that it’s like the “Melt” of burger places. I’m not sure what kind of high-level chef meetings go on behind the scenes to come up with this stuff, but some of those combinations are interesting and truly ah-maz-ing.

Our server (whose name, we later discovered, was Steve – thanks to the random, non-regular patron seated near us who managed to achieve first name basis with him after about two hours and eight beers) was great. He was professional but still super friendly, and we all truly appreciate someone with a sense of humor. Especially one that matches ours. Case in point: when Shane inhaled his burger before the rest of us made it through half our meals, Steve stopped over and quipped “So you hated it then.” I ask for more napkins, he just says “no” and walks away. He comes over to ask about a third round and gives Amanda crap when she tries to wuss out – I believe his exact words were “Oh come on, it’s MILLER LITE.”

BTW, Ted was thrilled that for once he wasn’t the one being called a pansy for not drinking enough.

So you can always tell we really like a place when it’s past 9:00 and we’re still there. And when the words “let’s do shots” start getting thrown around. By 10:00 we were three round of shots deep and had befriended the random, non-regular patron mentioned above who told us Steve’s name. He was visiting the area for work, and his buddy/co-worker had abandoned him at the bar right about the time we ordered our first round of shots. In fact, I think he paid for our first round of shots. Which, by the way, were the tasitest. We were going to order Pumpkin Pie, but Steve talked us into Apple Pie, which is a house made special. And by far the better choice. Steve does not lie.

And we either should’ve just kept doing those, or stopped doing shots all together, because they just went downhill from there. The flowchart goes something like this: Apple Pie>pumpkin pie> White gummy bear > Russian Fruit Basket. Learn from our mistakes.

This was NOT the apple pie shot, Which means it looks way more fun than it tasted.

This was NOT the apple pie shot, Which means it looks way more fun than it tasted.

Unfortunately the night ended on a bit of a sour note, after conversations with our new random transient friend crossed into highly opinionated and loaded subject matter not intended to be discussed after four rounds of shots. Its like breaking one of the cardinal rules of new bar friendships. By 11:00 we had broken up with him and left the bar – but we’re not letting the ending of the night influence our overall thoughts on the place. We will definitely be back.








Shane, with the rare double thumbs up












Picked by:  Steph
Drinks: Apple. Pie Shots. And $3.50 tall domestic drafts on Wednesdays. Enough said.  
Outstanding. The server wasn’t lying when he said the burgers were out of this world.
Service: You have to appreciate a server who is serious enough to memorize your order without screwing it up but also witty enough to tastefully bust your chops when it comes to ordering another round. And although we think Steve whispered a “they’re going to write a review” in his manager’s ear, having said manager stop by a few times to check on us didn’t hurt our feelings at all.
Overall: This is the first place in a while to earn a high thumbs up all across the board, including a double from Shane. We’ll definitely be back. We just may not be as talkative to strangers after the second round of shots.

Next Pick: Amanda

Happy Moose Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon