Follow me through the adventures that take place in my kitchen, in restaurants or in other kitchens. Cooking and food are my passions and I want to share my experiences of cooking, baking and eating with you.
I'm a Greek self-taught cook who lives in Chicago. I learned a lot about cooking from both of my grandmothers, my mom and dad, family and friends. Passing on timeless traditions through food is one thing I strive to do in life.
These are my journeys through culinary exploration...
clraptis (at) gmail (dot) com
I went to Lockdown with the intention of ordering the Bootleg - a burger with kimchi, bacon and a fried egg. I know… sounds delicious, right?
They were out of kimchi (booo), but our server, Linda, had a suggestion of subbing their jalapeño onion relish in its place. It definitely brought the spiciness that I was looking for, but it was different than the spicy I was craving. Still delicious as always. Too bad I wasn’t hungry enough to finish even half of it! These burgers are huge, y’all.
In my opinion, Lockdown won’t ever disappoint me with the food (or hospitality and generosity)!!
Went to Lockdown (again) this weekend. It has become somewhat of a “reward” to have a burger there after a week of eating right and working out regularly. :)
This time I had the Lockdown Warden:
Burger on a pretzel roll infused with bacon, leeks, garlic, shallots and stuffed with cheddar cheese. Topped with crispy fried leeks and shallots that were tossed in truffle oil.
I love burger patties that are infused/stuffed with ingredients instead of it being topped. When the extras are sitting on top of the burger, I undoubtedly will lose half of the goodies as they slip out from under the bun and onto my plate (or lap). This genius idea of stuffing the patty itself with yummy things like leeks, shallots, cheese and BACON is the best way to get a guaranteed taste of it all in each bite.
Lockdown does it again! Next visit I’m going to try the burger with kimchee, bacon and a fried egg. Mmmmm!!!!
A friend of mine had been dying to take me to his friend’s bar, Lockdown Bar & Grill, to try some of the “best burgers in Chicago” (as he put it). I was skeptical because nothing compares to a Five Guys burger in my opinion.
2 weeks ago, he finally convinced me to meet him there - and I have to be honest, I went back again one week later! The burgers are THAT amazing.
Pictured here are the two burgers we ordered during our first visit:
Cruelty to Animals(left) - 10 oz. Angus burger topped with bacon, porkbelly and prosciutto
Punk Bitch(right) - 10 oz. Angus burger topped with crispy prosciutto, gruyere cheese and a garlic mustard cream sauce
These burgers were cooked to perfection, super juicy - not at all greasy. The array of different toppings and burger options exceeded my expectations! Did I mention that these two burgers in particular were served on PRETZEL rolls?? Pretzel rolls = key ingredient to a successful burger (IMO). This is the definition of an amped up burger.
My choice was the punk bitch and I was more than pleased. The prosciutto was so crispy and added that perfect pork-generated saltiness that I live for (especially on a burger). The gruyere and garlic mustard cream sauce combination added a flavorful touch. It was DIVINE!
I got the chance to talk with PJ Zonis, one of the owners. His vision for this place is such a great idea. The atmosphere is rockin’ - they play live concert DVDs of all kinds of rock bands (think ACDC, Guns and Roses, Metallica, Iron Maiden, etc.) on their flat screens mounted all over the bar walls. He and his partners wanted this to be a bar that serves delicious food. I think they hit the nail on the head with this place. Even though it is a bar with exceptional food, the focus they put on the food/menu is top priority. Their kitchen is open until the place closes and we’re talking bar food that does NOT disappoint!
If you live in Chicago or just visiting and burgers are your thing, I suggest you make trip to Lockdown at some point. No matter what burger you order, you will be satisfied!