Rockit Bar & Grill's popular Locavore burger is one favorite…
Billy Dec tweets. A lot. The CEO of Rockit Ranch has become nearly as well-known for his constant Twitter use as for the company's Asian restaurant Sunda and two locations of Rockit Bar & Grill. But what he discovered on social media about one of his own businesses ended up surprising him.
A decade ago, Rockit Ranch opened Rockit Bar & Grill in River North, and three years ago, it opened a second location in Lakeview just steps from Wrigley Field (3700 N. Clark St. 773-645-4400). When Dec noticed that customers were tweeting him photos almost exclusively of burgers at the bar's Wrigley location, he asked his managers to pull sales records and found that burgers accounted for 75 percent of orders. So they're giving the people what they want and reconcepting the location into Rockit Burger Bar, due to launch in time for Cubs opening day on April 5.
The change isn't far-fetched, considering Rockit hosts an annual Burger Fest event and the bar's original brie-topped Kobe burger with truffle fries has earned local and national praise. Rockit Burger Bar's menu of 16 burgers will feature old favorites, such as the original Rockit Burger and the Locavore with Midwestern-made cheese, bacon aioli and onion rings battered in Goose Island beer, as well as some brand-new creations and a long list of DIY toppings. Here's a peek at three new burgers on the menu.
Fans of the pub grub favorite that is the jalapeno popper should save room for this spicy burger, which piles the breaded, cream cheese-stuffed peppers on top of a patty along with pepper jack cheese and ghost pepper aioli. "It has a kick to it, but not like one of those crazy kicks where they try to get you to sign a waiver," Dec said.
The Johnny Apple Burger
This burger builds on the popular combination of apples and brie by matching slivers of gala apple with melted brie as well as applewood-smoked bacon and pecan aioli. It sounds a little reminiscent of Rockit's popular cinnamon raisin grilled cheese sandwich with brie, apples and hazelnut vinaigrette—only in burger form.
First, Dimo's Pizza (formerly Ian's) put mac 'n' cheese on pizza. Then Cheesie's slapped it on a grilled cheese sandwich. Now Rockit adds to Lakeview's reputation for loving mac 'n' cheese on anything possible by piling cheesy mac, beef shortribs and caramelized onions on top of a Black Angus burger. Dec wasn't so sure about this burger dreamed up by Rockit Ranch partner Arturo Gomez, but a few bites changed his mind. "It's the ultimate comfort food, and if you can take that warm, cheesy sort of texture and taste that gives you that brings you back [to childhood and put it] inside a burger … it's unbelievable," Dec said.
Most burgers will cost $12. Check out rockitburgerbar.com for more info.
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