After a long day or work a group of us workaholics decided to stop at Emil's Sports Bar and Pizza for some drinks and dinner. I wasn't really hungry, but definitely needed the drink. I didn't really plan on having a burger this night. Last week we actually ordered some pizza from this place and it was sub-par even though people seem to give it high reviews around here. We all sat down and ordered some beers and appetizers. We got fried mushrooms, jalapeno poppers, wings, and I guess a popular specialty there called beer nuggets.
Beer nuggets turned out to be fried pizza dough topped with parmesean cheese and marinara sauce for dipping. The locals rave about them, but I found them gross. It's just fried bread and definitely not flavorfull. The marinara sauce was obviously not freshly made. The wings were small and plain. The fried mushrooms had a lot of breading and no seasoning. The jalapeno poppers I passed on so no comment there. I just wasn't impressed and that goes for most of the meals I had in the Mundelein/Libertyville/Vernon Hills area. I actually planned on ordering room service later, but then burgers started arriving at our table. It seemed everyone who had an entree got burgers and they did look pretty good. My mouth started to water, my stomach made room, and I felt the onset of hunger. I ordered a cheeseburger to go and waited.
Burger - Cheeseburger $7.25 (with fries)
The burger was surprisingly good. It had a nice hard sear, a good crust, and a nice vivid pink medium-rare center. It's a thick patty and they cooked it perfectly and seasoned it well. The tomato and lettuce served with it were definitely not necessary. This is a nice piece of beef and you should enjoy it so. I picked good ole American cheese to top my burger, which was melted nicely. The bun was ordinary, being a redular white bun, untoasted and no real flavor. In this case it was a good thing. The bun allowed the beef to shine as the star of the show.
Side - Fries
Before I left the bar I took a gander in the box and quickly tried one of the crinkle-cut fries. They were nice and hot, well salted and crispy, but sadly the crispiness wore away as they must of steamed on the ride home.
Drink - Coors Light (bottle)
Yeah, I tapped the Rockies.
Conclusion: Emil's is an average sports bar with an above average burger. The flat screens are oddly placed for watching and the place is a bit smoky. Most of the food I tried was horrible, except for the burger. ONLY ORDER THE BURGER!