Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Simone's Bar

Location: 960 W. 18th St., Chicago, IL 60623
Simone's on Urbanspoon

A Quick Word:
One of my "go-to" bars is Simone's.  This bar is located in the Pilsen neighborhood making it one of the better options around UIC.  When you arrive, you will notice the bar uses old pinball machines as shelves and other decoration.  They have swinging chair seats as their booths and other interesting trinkets.  After you take in all their weird decorations, you realize they have an extensive craft beer list and a rotating list of mixology cocktails.  I also really enjoy this bar because of the specials they offer.  As a student, it is amazing to finding a place that offers a burger and beer for five bucks or pizza and beer for six.  Unfortunately, the area is not as nice as the River North neighborhood and not even close to that mainstream crowd.  This is a place to come for a chill night or a quick dinner.  Don't get me wrong, the bar does get packed, just not like the downtown joints.  After trying a bunch of their food (sorry only pizzas described below), I can safely say they are above average and for that reason, I gave them a 4-mile rating.

What We Ate:

Pilsen Pizza

It was a no brainer choosing the $6 any pizza special with PBR tall boy.  The hard decision was which pizzas to choose.  For the first, we stuck with "The Pilsen."  This pizza has a thin crust base and rather than a tomato sauce, it uses a black bean emulsion for its sauce.  Then, the pizza is topped with your typical taco ingredients... pico de gallo, mexican cheeses, and ground beef.  A few tortilla chips top the pizza.  After the first bite, I realized this was a weak attempt at CPK's tostada pizza, just lacking the lettuce.  The pizza itself was extremely salty.  So how to make it better?  Add shredded lettuce, chopped onions, and less salt.  Then it would be stellar.

Simone's Pizza

The second pizza  was their bar's speciality.  The "Simone's Pizza" was built on the same crust, but was a white or sauceless pizza.  Instead, it was topped with sliced red potatoes, parmesan cheese, and a rosemary simple syrup.  This pizza was absolutely delicious.  The potatoes were soft, but not overcooked.  The parmesan cheese added the needed sharp flavor and that rosemary simple syrup reminded you of the holidays.  I wish they added honey or a little more of the simple syrup to give it a sweet and salty profile.  I highly suggest this pizza and will be back to get it again!

The DOs/DON'Ts:
- Huge variety of cocktails.  They are strong drinks and use ingredients from jalape├▒os to egg whites.  You really can't go wrong if you like strong, mixology-type cocktails.
- Call ahead for their daily special.  We had the Any Pizza and a PBR Tallboy for $6 total.  Other specials I have stumbled across includes Burger and PBR for $5 and Free Fries with any drink purchase.
- Plenty of parking on 18th Street and also the side streets

- Walking around the area at night is not the safest.  One of my friends even had a her car broken in to, so don't leave anything in plain sight.

How far would I walk for this food?

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