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A burger at The Swill Inn
1. The lightly toasted brioche bun is from Turano Bakery. 2. Moore’s pimento cheese includes three kinds of jalapeños: raw, pickled, and smoked. 3. The housemade pickles are particularly acidic, which balances out the burger’s fattiness. 4. The thin, seared patties are a blend of ground Angus beef and brisket for extra richness. Photo: Jeff Marini

The Swill Inn

You probably don’t know it yet, but chances are your next drunken craving is on the menu at the Swill Inn. It might be the double cheeseburger topped with a comically large scoop of pimento cheese (see our annotation above to find out what makes this behemoth so satisfying). Or maybe it’s the poutine drenched in smoked-gravy goodness, its crisp twice-fried potatoes changing texture with each bite. Or it could be the mussels with fennel and chorizo, or the three-cheese macaroni, or the true-to-form Southern collard greens.

This is bar food prepared with fine-dining precision. Chef and co-owner Lamar Moore, whom you may remember from his short but transformative stint at the Currency Exchange Cafe in Washington Park, cooks with heart, his food boldly seasoned. Moore’s partner, Dustin Drankiewicz, mixes 1960s-inspired cocktails — a signature whiskey sour, a tart tequila daisy — that taste far better than their $9 price tags would lead you to expect. If you really want to get your midcentury on, head downstairs to the speakeasy, Chit Chat Lounge, where the drinks are fancier, the plates are smaller, and the decor is a vision in red velour and leather slingbacks. All the more reason to eat something upstairs that’ll help you hold your liquor.

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