Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Kitty O'Shea's Food Review

Kitty Classic Burger with Fries

Kitty O'Shea's puts the happy in "happy hour" with its $5 burger special; but despite some of the friendliest customer service this side of the Mississippi, fails to deliver where it counts most... its food.

This isn't your typical Irish pub; but the space fills up nicely, with early evening crowds extending to its comfortable outdoor dining patch. I stopped by for a post-haircut meal, just before 4:00 PM... well within Kitty O'Shea's 3-7:00 PM Happy Hour window (available seven days a week.) I went inside and ordered a Kitty Classic Burger for 5 bucks with fries (an extra $.99) and a Diet Coke ($2.50.) It was hot as heck inside (about four other customers were drinking, watching TV) so I asked to eat outside.

You couldn't ask for a better location: A shaded haven, along busy Wisconsin Avenue. Unfortunately, two losers from an office building next door, came out for a smoke break, parking their lazy you-know-whats on a set of steps a few feet from where I was sitting. Frick and Frack (I had other names in mind at the time) sucked on their "cancer sticks" for almost 10 minutes, the same amount of time I had to wait for my MEDIUM burger and fries. Before that, my super-friendly server brought out my soda... which turned out to be flat... really flat.

My plate arrived, and I must admit... I was quite impressed. Sadly, it looked a lot better than it tasted. For starters, the burger was overcooked (between MEDIUM-WELL and WELL-DONE, leaning towards the latter.) Lettuce was smartly placed under the meat, allowing a thick tomato and vibrant red onion to grab all the attention. A good quality bun was inexplicably left ice cold, adding to my frustration: How hard is it to toss a bun on a grill for a minute or two?

Taste-wise, my burger was moist... aided by an especially thick tomato and crispy onion slices. With the bun in tow, it wound up as quite the mouthful: You won't walk away hungry, that's for sure. Fries were flavorful, but could have been a lot crispier (note to chef: Double-fry those bad boys... Please!)

Jen L. (my server) couldn't have been nicer, checking up on me twice and engaging me in conversation. She also asked if I'd be coming back... something I don't hear all that often (to my surprise.) A solid plate of food at an affordable price; but a cold bun and an overdone piece of meat, clip this burger at its heels.

Atmosphere: C (Hot inside; but a nice place to eat outdoors, unless you have to inhale second-hand smoke for more than a third of your stay.)
Burger: C- (Good toppings, but cold bun and overdone meat? Not good.)
Fries: C (Nice flavor, but not crispy enough for me.)
Service: B+ (Jen L. made a great impression.)
Value: C+ ($9.34 before tip, $14 after.)
Overall: C (Probably won't come back, but not as bad as some.)