Sunday, February 26, 2006

Brew House

Review 13 @ Stop 23
Brew House
1047 E. McMillian Street (Walnut Hills)

After receiving a raving review from a Brew House regular, the Cincinnati Burger Guys felt compelled for a drive to Walnut Hills for a visit to this established, family-run place. Twice voted as City Beat’s best neighborhood dive, this gathering place with booths and chrome tables in serve room for serving their regulars. Within the partisan UC memorabilia is a large sign welcoming XU fans. What a classy gesture from the long-time owners!

The Brew House has character. Where else can you get free-juke box Wednesday and Saturday afternoon live music? In fact, the Brew House is current meeting place for the Cincinnati Blues Society. The atmosphere reminded Wolfy of the mom-and-pop places in Milwaukee during his youth – but without the Wisconsin brats and Leinenkugel longnecks.

The hamburger ($4.50) is accompanied by sliced pickles and chips on the side. A very lightly toasted standard bun hold the freshly made patty adorned with much shredded lettuce, onion, tomato, and mayonnaise. The guys agreed the toppings more closely resembled a garden rather than subtle trimmings.

Hands forming fresh meat into estimated ¼ to 1/3 pound patties is obvious. The char-grilled final result delivered only minor differences between medium-rare, medium, and medium well. Wolfy proclaimed the use of high quality meat, but one openly wonders if the meat is too lean. Bucky notes the missing juices and the difficulty the patty had staying together. Freddie stays true to form by noting no seasonings added.

The Brew House is a unique place and it’s longevity to the area is noted. Outside of the freshness and quality of meat, the burger didn’t overwhelm the team.

Score: 3.5
Rating: Average

Next Review: Zola's

Monday, February 06, 2006

DeMeo's Pasta and Grill

Review 12 @ Stop #20
DeMeo’s Pasta and Grill
111 Main Street (Milford)

The owners of Lighthouse Pasta on old Rt. 28 in Miami Township (Clermont County) moved the restaurant to downtown Milford to gain space, but also changed the name. Although they improved the décor and atmosphere, Bucky (the fussy one) wondered why the use of glass tables because their undersides serve as dust collectors.

The menu offers seven different half-pound hamburgers so we dived into the Mega Burger ($6.50 with French fries and cole slaw). One thing for sure - DeMeo’s tries to achieve a quality burger. The meat is noticeably flavored (possibly with salt and pepper), It’s huge and garnished with green leaf lettuce instead of iceberg on a lightly toasted, Kaiser-shaped bun. Caramelized onions are standard along with lettuce, tomato, and onion. Let’s face it - The Cincinnati Burger Guys know these attributes are missing at most places.

On the down side, too much burger is outside the bun, so either decrease the burger’s diameter or get a larger bun. Although their kitchen uses some seasoning on the burger, the meat’s flavor could be further enhanced. Some burger lovers also believe an overabundance of condiments and trimmings tend of disguise low quality and/or lackluster tasting meat.

Overall, Bucky and Freddie found DeMeo’s to be a pleasant surprise.

Points: 6.5
Rating: A Step Up

Next Review: Brew House