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Saturday, March 5, 2016

Eclectic Eats at Bohemian Joe's

Bohemian Joe's
17940 Torrence Ave | Lansing, IL 60438

Last Wednesday, I took a midweek break to visit Bohemian Joe's in Lansing, Illinois. It's a new spot that started out with limited hours and is now going full swing. Overall, it was a cozy and modern spot with delicious and hearty food, friendly staff, and a great drink list. I plan on going back and hope that you'll give it a shot if you're local or ever find yourself in Lansing.

It was early in the evening, and a weekday, but there were quite a few cars in the parking lot. Walking up to it, the building looked clean and updated. Bohemian Joe's was painted boldly across the front of the building. 

As soon as we walked in we were warmly greeted by the hostess and quickly seated. The restaurant was divided into a back room, main area, and bar with a good amount of seating in a separate area. It was family friendly, but the separate bar area makes it comfortable for a kid-free night too.

The decor was a mix of wood flooring and accents, stone, and metal. Historical pictures were hung on the wall with arrows pointing out Joe. The glass light fixtures varied in shape, color, and size. The booth seats were comfy and nicely upholstered. 

The music was great. Upbeat and fun. The first song I noticed was Wonderwall, then Blister in the Sun, moving on Song 2 and All Apologies. 

Susan quickly came by and took our orders.

The tap list was a decent mix of stouts, sours, and IPAs. It was a mix of widely distributed and local brews. They even had a list of what was coming on tap. The bottle/can list was extensive. The cocktail list was interesting too. They had a range of bourbon drinks, gimlets, and fruitier cocktails.

We started with Anderson Valley's Heelch O' Hops and Sierra Nevada's Gose. The IPA was hop rich but not astringent. A pleasure to smell and more of a pleasure to drink. The Gose was crisp and very light.

For dessert I had a St-Germain cocktail (Winter Cosmo) and Mr. K had Joe Daddy by Pig Minds (an imperial stout). The cosmo wasn't too sweet, and the elderflower liqueur really came through. Joe Daddy was very chocolaty with a coffee roast.

I was very tempted to sit at the bar for a couple more drinks, but that will have to wait for another day.

The menu was varied. It had meatless options, sandwiches, fried food, salads, seafood, pizzas, steaks. It was two pages of goodness, without being overwhelming. They had a long list of specials.

We ordered the wings (full, double wings). They were perfectly fried, crispy but not dry. The buffalo sauce was spicy and flavorful, not just coated in Frank's. It came with five full wings, well worth the $10.

The service was quick, a little too quick. We were just digging into a second wing when Mr. K's soup came out. He hadn't touched the soup before the entrees came out. That said, the food didn't get cold, and I didn't feel too rushed. 

For entrees, I ordered the cajun patty melt special with fries, and Mr. K ordered the Beef Manhattan with a side of soup.

The creamy chicken vegetable soup was hearty with a great herb flavor.  It had big chunks of chicken and fresh vegetables. I think we both would have been fine just eating that!

Mr. K's sandwich was massive. Soft, fresh Turano bread piled with chunky, yet creamy mashed potatoes, tender beef, and rich gravy. 

My patty melt was well spiced, but didn't have too much kick. The onions were caramelized to perfection. The marble rye bread was delicious. The meat was perfectly cooked for my taste, not overcooked. The steak fries were standard steak fries. I always have a problem resisting the soft, yet crisp, potato goodness. I had to stop myself from eating them all, so I'd have room for dessert.

After the giant wings and about a quarter of the entrees, we decided to take a break for dessert. The red velvet cheesecake was so, super, rich. The chocolate drizzled on it tasted like Hershey's. It had little florets of whipped cream at the corners. We devoured it in record time. 

We really enjoyed ourselves. Our bill was reasonable. For the food, it was $36 for three courses and the drinks were standard prices. We had plenty of leftovers. The quality of the food was great with options for everyone. The drinks list made me want to stay for more. The cozy and clean atmosphere made it a comfortable place to hang out. Check it out, and let me know how you like it.

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