Last week I made my first-ever "pilgrimage" to Kuma's Corner, a revered heavy metal bar in the Avondale neighborhood that happens to serve the most revered burgers in Chicago.
I've been hearing the legends of Kuma's creations for quite some time, but stories of two-hour waits for a table and another hour for your burger to be cooked in their tiny kitchen had kept me away. I did try to go once on my birthday, but there was a 45-minute wait -- on a weekday...at 2:00 in the afternoon. If there's one thing I'm not good at, it's waiting.
Last Thursday, I felt like exploring for lunch. I had planned to go to Borinquen Restaurant for my first taste of a jibarito, a Puerto Rican "sandwich" with plantains replacing the standard bread of an average sandwich. But at the last minute, I decided to swing by Kuma's on my way to take a peek at the the wait.
Well, I guess it was my lucky day, because there was absolutely no wait at Kuma's. I walked right in, sat down at the bar, ordered and was gorging myself on a 10-ounce Kuma Burger -- topped with bacon, cheddar and a fried egg -- within minutes.
The picture you see above was the very Kuma Burger that I ate that day, and when it was served to me, I took that picture and sent it out on Twitter. And believe it or not, within 10 minutes, I was joined at the bar by three people who had seen my tweet! I know one of them well, but the two others I had never actually met in person, having only conversed briefly with one of them on Twitter. None of us had ever been to Kuma's before, but here we were all enjoying the legendary fare and each others' company. Now that's technology in action!
As for the burger, it was really good -- pure gluttony, no doubt -- but I wasn't blown away. I'd definitely go back and try one of their other creations, but I wouldn't wait an hour for it.
And the jibarito, I'll have to get back to you on that one.