A Squared: Recent Chicago Restaurant Visits: Kings County Tap

Monday, November 23, 2015

Recent Chicago Restaurant Visits: Kings County Tap

I'm always excited when new and interesting restaurants open up on Chicago's North Side. While River North and the West Loop may get the bulk of the trendy and most high profile new restaurant openings, the north neighborhoods also have their fair share of great places to eat too-- usually a little more under the radar, but not lacking in great food and drinks. And Kings County Tap absolutely falls into that category.

This unassuming bar and restaurant is located in the old Etno Village Grill space right at the big intersection of Wrightwood, Lincoln, and Sheffield near Oz Park. I had frequently walked by while it was under construction this summer and the awesome old cargo train car that they've upcycled into the base of their bar really caught my eye. Well, I'm happy to report that not only is the space rustic and cool, but their menu is equally impressive. This is not your typical Lincoln Park bar-- instead, Kings County Tap features unique craft beers (including a build your own flight option) and selection of cocktails in addition to a menu of modern American cuisine. You'll find lots of classic dishes on the menu, prepared in interesting but still approachable ways. 

Alex and I stopped into Kings County Tap on a recent chilly fall evening for a nice low key dinner date. I love beets, so the beet "tartare" on the small plates menu was right up my alley. Finely diced roasted beets were served up to look like a beef tartare over creamy herbed ricotta and topped with pickled fennel. It was a great combination of flavors and textures and served with soft warm naan flatbread, it was a perfect starter-- or part of a light meal for me.

I wanted a little something extra in addition to these beets, and a side of the white cheddar grits sounded like the perfect thing to enjoy on a cold night. These grits were rich and super creamy with a great hit of sharp cheddar flavor.

Alex is a burger guy and he ordered the Kings County Burger. Their signature burger was topped with a generous amount of melty sharp cheddar cheese, pickled onions, and creamy 1011 island dressing on a toasty bun. The burger was juicy and the toppings provided a good balance of flavors. And the burger came accompanied by a huge mound of crispy french fries with spicy sriracha ketchup. I could not steal enough of these addictive fries off of Alex's plate!

Last, but certainly not least, Kings County Tap features a selection of seasonal pies from Bang Bang Pie Shop for dessert. We couldn't resist a slice of the chocolate peanut butter pie with a chocolate cookie crust, creamy peanut butter mousse filling, and chocolate ganache topping. It was rich and delicious and the perfect sweet ending to this meal!

Editor's Note: Our meal at Kings County Tap was complimentary, however the opinions expressed herein are my own.

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