The Burgers of Chi
It is time to introduce you to my favorite burger joint in the city. You've heard of Billy Goats, Top Notch, Kuma's, Moody's Pub, Fat Burger has arrived in Chi and all sorts of other various well publicized hamburger spots around Chicago. Now its time for me to share a little secret with you. My favorite burger joint in Chicago goes by the name "Thats-A-Burger" or TAB or "Thatsa" as we call it. The little burger joint that slang's perfect, juicy-burgers from behind bullet proof glass in a little storefront on 71st in the South Shore neighborhood might be Chicago's best little culinary treasure. If you want a cocktail and some truffle fries with your burger then forget about this place, go to Rockit, or somewhere Chicago Scene told you to go. If you want a real hand formed burger that is just that...a burger, then get over there.
TAB does the bare minimum when it comes to decor and ambiance but who gives a hoot, the burger is the best in the city. Ive been to TAB countless times and still drive by it sometimes because it can be really hard to spot, they have a little sign in the window that is half torn off, that's it. Along with their top notch hand made burgers they are said to make an amazing turkey burger, I don't doubt that it is by far the best TB in the city.
You gotta love any place with house specials. They dont disappoint here...wow.
The chili is some of my favorite in the city as well
TAB is a very popular neighborhood stop for hungry locals, there is always going to be a wait, even if your the only person in there. It takes time to form the patty and cook it, its a sign of good things to come when you have to wait 10-15 at a burger joint. The only downer I ever had is the wait, but whats wrong with waiting for your burger to be made, they aren't taken out of a freezer and thrown on the flames and they aren't thin either so it takes some time to grill them. The fresh cut fries are also the perfect compliment to your cheeseburger and are included with each burger. Locals will usually call in their order because they know that at peak hours it can take up 45 minutes, so you do the same. Put the number in your phone and place your order when your 10-15 minutes away.
Burgers are what they do here and they don't bother with much else (1/2 lb) you can make it a double if you dare, the standard comes with onions (grilled or raw) lettuce, pickle, mustard, and ketchup. Other toppings available for extra include includes choice of sport, jalapeño, or giardinara peppers, American, Swiss, or Cheddar cheese, chili, bacon, or a fried egg. In my book the only way to go is with a egg on top. So here ladies and gentleman is what you've been waiting for.
Thats a burger...do not miss this place.
Overall Grade: A+
Strengths--This is what every burger place ought to be. They dont do anything wrong here. Hows that for a strength?
Weakness--Take-out only, if that even is one, you have to eat the burger on the hood of your car or in your car. Also there is always a wait. Decide if you want a beef or turkey burger and what you want on it and call in your order 15-20 minutes prior to your arrival.
2134 E 71st St
Chicago, IL 60649