It's been an interesting week, ranging from the sophisticated to the most casual of dining on the Omnibus route this week. Today Buckaroo Bonsai and I discovered a hidden gem of a bargain in casual dining (and cocktails) at Famous Freddie's Roadhouse in Mount Prospect, IL. The menu is unfancy bar fare -- but, tasty, messy and marvelous fun to eat... and CHEAP. Miller High Life and Miller Lite were $1.50 each on tap (one of the Sunday Specials). Brats were $1.50 each. A half pound of cheese fries was $1.95. Yep. Lunch for two, including tip, for under $10.
The brats had been steamed in beer, then lightly grilled. The buns were fresh. The condiments were many, varied and plentiful. The fries were just how I like them -- salty, greasy and gloppy with cheese.
When we went to pick up our order, Buckaroo Bonsai asked the "chef" at the grill about the quality of the ribs ($9.95 for a 1 lb. slab). Reggie (that's his name) told us that the ribs were great, and that he smoked them himself. We thanked him, and headed back to our table to pig out on brats and beer. Just a few minutes later, Reggie appeared at our table and held out a half slab of ribs to each of us to try... at no charge. Beautiful pork spare ribs with a sweet, slightly tangy sauce, falling-off-the-bone tender. Yum!
We ended lunch with mustard and relish up to our elbows, and barbeque sauce from ear to ear. (I have a theory about what makes food good: You either have to use every pan in the kitchen to make it, or it has to be messy to eat; in fact, the messier, the better. Famous Freddie's proves the messy-to-eat theory, without question.)
Famous Freddie's has nightly beer and/or cocktail specials, including $1 mixed drinks on Wednesdays. In addition, on Fridays and Saturdays they have live music upstairs and DJ music, with large dance floors in both sections of the roadhouse.
It ain't a fancy joint... but the food is delicious and inexpensive, the drinks are big and cheap, the chef is a peach and our waitress Lisa (who also bartends) was a doll. We're going back, and soon.