Philadelphia, PA: The Sidecar Bar & Grille’s Sidecar Burger

2201 Christian St
Philadelphia, PA 19146

I’m cringing at the thought of including that picture…ugh!  On the short list of Philly’s great gastropubs, the Sidecar Bar’s dim lighting is the foil to any food blogger hoping to snap a quick pic of their meal without throwing off a flash (and thus garnering the stares and smirks of other diners). My words may have to hold you over until you can get there in person (and I strongly encourage you to do that).

We hit the Sidecar on a recent dad’s night out for burgers and beer and everything was perfect (1. George Costanza-esque parking spot right out front 2. awesome beer selection 3. truly eclectic and enjoyable background music which took us from 70’s funk to 90’s shoegaze and of course 4. the burgers – billed as half-pound angus beef burgers).

I had the namesake Sidecar Burger which featured my favorite condiment – more meat! In this case, it was some top notch Tasso Ham. Add on a truly tasty Marchand de Vin sauce (described to us by the waiter as brown gravy mixed with a red wine reduction), provolone cheese, lettuce and tomato and this burger, which leans heavily on Cajun/Creole influences (the Tasso & the MdV sauce), hit the spot.

The burger itself was perfectly seasoned, almost as ordered (asked for just a bit below medium – got pretty much medium) and ridiculously huge (I had to cut it in half for decorum purposes).  The Marchand de Vin sauce didn’t hit me at first but the last few bites had been soaking in it for some time and the flavors really popped (wine + butter rarely fails).  The bread sopped up the sauce pretty well too and my mind quickly drifted to thinking about how good the sauce would taste on some leftover Thanksgiving turkey.  But I digress.  Oh yeah, it came with pretty good thick-cut steak fries and a mini salad with cider-dressing, too!

The Sidecar Bar is a neighborhood bar that really seemed welcoming.  Even later in the evening we saw a family with kids sitting down to dinner.  I am certain that the next big burger poll in Philly will feature this place towards the top.

Go check it out for yourself next time you are in “G-Ho”, you won’t be let down!

Recipe for Marchand de Vin sauce (not from The Sidecar Bar, but probably pretty darn close)

The Sidecar ranked #29 on Philly Weekly’s list of Top 50 Bars.
Sidecar Bar & Grille on Urbanspoon

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