Since this site is still fairly new, I don’t want to stray from my burger reviews with so many places in town yet to try, but I feel compelled to talk about an interesting meal I had last week. My girlfriend and I wanted to try something different for dinner, and I quickly remembered hearing about the wild game sliders that they serve over at the Chicago Brewing Company. One thing I like almost as much as burgers is trying weird and new foods, this promised to do just that.
While I suppose I should come back to try their burger at some point, this establishment is more on the ‘typical’ pub food side, and isn’t necessarily on the top of my list for burgers to review. Still, the wild game aspect was intriguing enough to drag me in. The interior of the restaurant as well as the bar side are nothing fancy, pretty standard faire for a local restaurant. We went there on a random week night around 6pm, and quickly decided that based on the large amount of families and screaming kids the bar side would be better for our needs. Even though there are high top tables away from the bar itself, you can still anticipate a smoky atmosphere with mediocre service. We waited a bit too long to get our menus and first drinks, but after that it wasn’t too bad.
There are six wild game sliders on the CBC’s menu, each paired with what the chef believes to be the perfect complement to that meat’s flavoring. You have the option of trying 3 of one style, or all 6 for a little less than twice the price. Based on a slider meal we had a couple days earlier, we knew that 6 sliders between the two of us would be more than enough and would allow us to divulge in all flavors.
Here’s the rundown:
Alligator: from what I’m told alligator meat has very little flavor, so it is always seasoned to give whatever dish it is served as more character. Having a connotation with the cuisine of the south, this one is quite over seasoned with Cajun flavors. Don’t get me wrong, they’re good, but you really don’t get an idea of what alligator tastes like based on this. The soft egg, Remoulade, and other toppings paired well with this.
Antelope: almost too gamey for my liking, but quite good. The meat was pretty much what I anticipated it to taste like. Again the jalapeno jelly and toppings all paired quite well with it. The meat might have been a tiny bit dry, but I’m not sure how much of that is a natural trait of antelope meat as opposed to it being a slider which is always inherently dry.
Bison: I’m always a big fan of bison meat, and this didn’t disappoint. I buy bison steaks quite often at Whole Foods, and have also been known to make a great bison burger with some of the ground bison meat from Smith’s. Unfortunately we’re not treated with different toppings for the remainder of the meats I will mention, but as I’ve stated already they paired well so why mess with a good thing.
Jackelope: possibly one of my favorites of the bunch. Wasn’t sure what to expect with this one, but it turned out to be a great mix of two different meats, a little sweet with just the right amount of gamey. This one definitely stood out for me.
Rabbit: could have been my least favorite of the group. It seemed very gamey, stiff and dry, which I’ve heard should not be the case with rabbit meat. The dryness I could tack on to the slider size always being impossible to cook (see my review of Slidin’ Thru coming soon), but I can’t explain the gamey taste. Neither of us were really a fan, I think it was the only one that had a bite or so leftover.
Wild boar: a favorite of both of us. Picture a sausage patty, but the tastiest, purest form of that. I may not have gotten my full half of this one because someone else also really liked it, but what I had I enjoyed quite a bit.
Overall this meal was a lot of fun, the little signs on each patty are a great touch, and it’s an easy way for the commoner to try something ‘exotic’ while still sticking with a familiar form. If you’re feeling a little adventurous and want to try something different, definitely give them a visit. Their beer isn’t so bad either.