Reviewing the best cheeseburgers on Court Street

Breaks in between classes are usually only good for one thing: eating lunch. But sometimes, the normal fresh fruit or salad gets boring. Sometimes a greasy sandwich with beef and cheese is the best thing to quell your hunger. But where are the best places to get cheeseburgers around Court Street?

FAST FOOD CHAIN

Wendy’s has, by far, the greasiest cheeseburgers. This is especially true if— like me— you enjoy bacon on them.

Hamburger: The “Always fresh, never frozen” patties served at Wendy’s are tender, yet hearty and tasty. Watch out for grease dropping as you take bites, though. A

Cheese: Wendy’s uses pretty basic sliced yellow, processed cheese- nothing too bold or tasty for the international chain. C

Toppings: A Wendy’s cheeseburger comes with all the usual toppings, such as lettuce, tomato and onion. Or you can get one without any toppings. You can even get some OK bacon on your sandwich. B

Buns: Wendy’s doesn’t use sesame seed buns on their cheeseburgers, but theirs are OK for what they are. B

Overall: There is not much wrong with a Wendy’s cheeseburger and there shouldn’t be, considering it’s designed by a billion dollar corporation. But the high quality of the grade-A hamburger meat is not helped by its merely above average supporting cast. It’s still a good sandwich, though. B

SPECIALTY

The Uptown Grille, just a little ways down Union Street, cooks several different sandwiches for customers who are on the go, but its real value lies in its cheeseburgers.

Hamburgers: Uptown Grille’s hamburgers are lean and good. However, they’re on the skinny side so toppings are a must. B

Cheese: The cheddar that Uptown Grille uses complements the saltiness of the burger perfectly and is best when paired with a sauce like A1 or barbecue. A

Toppings: The bacon isn’t lean enough for my taste, but Uptown Grille is willing to put different sauces on your cheeseburger from buffalo sauce to, as previously mentioned, A1. B

Buns: Uptown Grille uses pretty standard rolls for buns, and they are not durable for the amount of grease that comes from the burger. Grease and any additional sauce added to the sandwich saturate its paper wrapping. If you’re eating on the go, make sure you have some napkins because you may have a mess. C

Overall: The ingredients in an Uptown Grille cheeseburger are not all perfect, but the sandwich tastes really good and is ideal for eating between classes. B

SIT-DOWN

Now I would never promote day drinking (never!), especially if you’re underage. If on the off chance you want your cheeseburger at lunch to be served on a plate (but not—I repeat— not with a beer) in a relaxing atmosphere, you can’t go wrong with The Pub.

Hamburger: Tender, thick and juicy, The Pub’s quarter pounder is everything you’d want in a burger. A

Cheese: A simple slice of American melted just right is enough to complement the patty perfectly. A

Toppings: The bacon that The Pub uses is top notch and cooked to perfection and they don’t put an excessive amount of it on the cheeseburgers. In addition to the bacon, there is a variety of other toppings to choose from as well, including blue cheese and onion rings. The Pub can be forgiven for not offering many  sauces. A

Buns: The cheeseburgers at The Pub have standard buns (no sesame seeds), but the quality lies in the fact that they don’t suffer from being wrapped up in paper or used by a chain restaurant. A

Overall: The Pub has the best cheeseburgers in Athens. It’s impossible to think of anything wrong with them. They are by far the most impressive and that’s saying something because there are plenty of good burgers on Court Street. A+

So, follow this guide if you want to indulge in a cheeseburger for lunch or if you don’t want to settle for microwave sliders anymore. Eating a burger at one of the locations uptown will be worth your time and money.

Top 7 relationships in Athens, Ohio

We have all heard about the Hollywood celebrity dating scene, but I bet you didn’t know we have our own celebrity couples in Athens, Ohio. The rich and famous have made their way to our college town and I bet you run into them more than you think. That’s right, I’m talking about the bars and restaurants that are open after dark. We crowd them, take pictures, and follow their every move. You have been so focused on your favorite that I’m sure you haven’t noticed that they are all secretly in relationships. It’s true, and we have the inside scoop for you!

JACKIEOS_UPTOWN

Jackie-O’s and Uptown Grill

Let’s start with two of the most famous establishments in Athens, Jackie-O’s and Uptown Grill. These love birds have been eyeing each other from across the street for years. After hanging out, listening to music, and enjoying the unique beers Jackie-O’s has, you can walk down the street and order the famous Chicken and Waffle sandwich. This is one couple you do not want to mess with.

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Big Mamma’s Burritos and Casa Nueva

Big Mamma’s Burritos and Casa Nueva is one couple that is juat too hot to ignore. They are both so bold, but together would be a powerhouse. If you start to get hungry after too many margaritas, your next stop should be Big Mamma’s for one of their signature burritos. While there is a separation between them, these star crossed lovers can’t be separated. Te amo!

DP_BRO

Broney’s Alumni Grill and D.P. Dough

Our next couple may be long distance, but Broney’s Alumni Grill and D.P. Dough will always be close at heart. With the word “alumni” in the name, it’s safe to assume that a lot of alums visit while reliving their glory days. Since they are veterans, they know how to beat the hangovers. They can order their calzones and meet it in the hotel, just in time for bed!

TONYS_INSOM

Tony’s and Insomnia Cookies

What is better than cookies and coffee? Nothing. Tony’s and Insomnia Cookies is a match made in Heaven. After drinking a Hot Nut, a mixture of coffee and liquor, the only thing that would make your night better would be a warm cookie! The best part is that Insomnia is open until 3 am, so you can pick it up on your way home!

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Pigskin and Kisers on Court BBQ

Life would be a “boar” without Pigskin and Kiser’s BBQ together. This relationship was a no brainer. Nothing goes together like beer, BBQ, and country music. These two have just that! Kiser’s on Court is now open until 3 am on Friday and Saturday. This combination would be the perfect “cure” for any weekend night!

USD_SKULL_CATSD

Union Street Diner, Cat’s Den, and The Smiling Skull

Here in Athens, Ohio, we don’t judge. When we heard that Union Street Dinner, Cat’s Den, and The Smiling Skull were in a relationship together, we welcomed them with open arms. All three of these places are located on Union Street and you can’t have one without the other. While these bars are considered “townie” bars, students just can’t resist them. After listening to the music and sitting on the patio, the only other logical stop would be the dinner. Thankfully it’s open 24/7.

BW3

Buffalo Wild Wings

And, of course, there’s always that one friend that will fall into the “forever alone” category. That friend is Buffalo Wild Wings. This restaurant serves food and alcohol late into the night. Between the beer, wings, and giant TV’s, why would you need anything else? Don’t worry BW3’s; we still love you!

Since the lifestyles of the rich and famous are constantly changing, what relationships are your favorites? Comment below and tell us your favorite duo in Athens, Ohio. You never know who might be next!

All photos and graphics of Athens, Ohio were taken and made by Hannah Funderburg

Last call prompts quest for late-night eats

Ohio University is one of those schools where you know you can find a good drink or two — or however many you want. And you can’t have good, cheap beer or a liquor pitcher without some good, greasy, cheap food to go along with it. And no surprise, Athens is not lacking in late-night eats. But how can anybody choose just one? Especially after a few too many beers.

From massive Big Mamma’s Burritos to the classic Chicken N Waffle from Uptown Grill, you can go on an epic journey to find a piece of grub (or two or three … maybe four) that will tickle your fancy and absorb some of that alcohol.

It’s about 2 a.m. It’s a typical Friday night (Saturday morning, really) in Athens. The street lights reflect off of the bricks. There’s the “thump-thud” of bass coming from the apartments above, and the streets of lower Court Street are swarming with girls, guys, townies, and all manner of college-aged young people migrating in and out of the multiple bars that line the road. And as these bars ring  “final call” bells, the flood of drunk coeds starts to trek to their next destination. Some go home, whether it be their own home or someone else’s. But a lot of these inebriated folks head toward their favorite late-night eateries, where they can chow down on the quick, cheap, and greasy delicacies that make drinking in Athens all worth it.

Rachel Daub is one of those coeds.

Top 10 spots for late-night eats
Top 10 spots for late-night eats — click  image for larger version

Daub, an Ohio University senior majoring in publication design, is no stranger to Uptown Athens. If you run into her after a night of beers and shots, she’ll most likely be on her way to Jimmy John’s or GoodFella’s, ready to get her fix of a slimy sandwich or a corner-piece pizza.

“It’s pretty much the known outcome of the night,” Daub says. “They are my go-tos. On rare occasions my friends might be able to persuade me into going somewhere else, but it’s usually either GoodFella’s, Jimmy Johns, or nothing.”

Her friend Emily Brockmann, a familiar comrade in Daub’s nights of drinks and chow, is also an avid GoodFella’s enthusiast.

“I feel like I’m always craving pizza no matter what time of the day it is so when I’m drunk I’m craving it even more. It’s greasy and saucy and cheesy, which is always 10 times better when you’re drunk and it’s so easy to eat too that I just love it so much.”

Preventing hangovers since 1995, GoodFella’s has two locations within walking distance, one on West Union Street and one near the end of Court Street. With pizza served hot and ready, and two slices plus a drink for $5, it’s no wonder the pizza joint is a late-night favorite. Hannah Cook, a GoodFella’s employee since 2010, says the laid-back atmosphere makes it a great place to work and an even better place to buy food.

“Even in the midst of crazy drunkenness and having to deal with people, it’s a very easy-going place,” she says.

Another late night top-dog, the mother of all burrito babies, is Big Mamma’s Burritos. Big Mamma’s serves burritos the size of a small child. Perfect for the nights where you don’t need a snack, but need a full-fledged meal. Spicy meat, gooey cheese, veggies and all kinds of tasty sauce blend together to form the perfect alcohol-absorbing system. This staple of Athens culture is a bucket-list must for any student who claims to attend Ohio University.

Melaina Lewis, a senior majoring in public relations, takes a timeout from her night of bar hopping to sit on the steps of the Athens Courthouse and enjoy a Big Mamma’s Chipotle Ranch burrito.

“It’s fantastic,” she says. “I’ve had so many of these since I’ve been at OU and I never get tired of them. And luckily they sell mini-sized burritos because I don’t know if I’d be able to consume a whole child-sized one by myself.”

With dozens of combinations, Big Mamma’s provides unlimited options for the ever-indecisive drunk. And as Lewis notes, the fact that they offer smaller burritos for only $6 makes it a great place for those who want a burrito, just maybe not a human-baby-sized one.

And despite being notorious for long lines and a chaotic atmosphere, Big Mamma’s continues to compete with GoodFella’s for the top spot in the heart of late night eaters.

“I waited for about 10 minutes for my burrito,” says Lewis. “But it was definitely worth it. There are always fun characters and things happening in Big Mamma’s and it all just adds to the experience.”

So what is it about GoodFella’s, Big Mamma’s and the rest of these late night eateries that are so appealing to Ohio University students and drinkers alike?

“I think that owners of these places just know that now is the opportune moment to make these kinds of food available,” says Lewis. “We’re young and in college, so obviously we’re going to be drinking excessively and then not caring about what we want to eat, so the combination of drunkenness and bad judgment makes it a total win for them.  And us.”

Whether it’s grab-and-run places like GoodFella’s and Uptown Grill, or sit-down and chill places like Union Street Diner and Wendy’s, the combination of drunkenness and good food can make eating at these restaurants an experience to remember. And adding old friends and new friends into the mix can make it even better.

“These restaurants are usually places where you end up meeting people randomly, so that’s always a good outcome,” explains Daub. “And events like HallOUween or Santa Fest are the kind of nights that are awesome to see people dressed up in costumes that are standing in line for a slice of pizza or a sandwich. And then running into your friends and having that common goal of food after drinking is always a great moment.“

Of course, as one can expect when alcohol is involved, there are a few horror stories that happen at the late night eateries.

“I saw the best, funniest fight,” says Daub. “I was in Wendy’s one night and these two guys got in a fist-fight over a frosty. That’s probably the craziest thing I’ve ever seen.”

And as an employee at one of the most popular joints in Athens, Cook has seen her fair share of crazy.

“People have thrown pizza across the place, and there’s been some barfing incidents, which is never fun. We had someone try and come in through the back door and steal a case of Gatorade.  Things like that happen a lot.”

Just as Robin Hood is the sidekick to Batman, late night eats are the sidekick, wingman, and accessory to the bars that line the streets of Athens. They’re the celebration after the big game. A standing ovation after a great performance. Without these places, would nightlife in Athens be as fun? Maybe. But there is definitely a great amount of value added to a night out because of these fantastic food establishments. And graduation will always come too soon for OU seniors to bear.

“I think that since I’ve turned 21, the bars and GoodFella’s have been like my go-to combination,” say Daub. “That’ll definitely be something I miss when I move away, I won’t be able to satisfy my cravings for GoodFellas or anything that comes as good and as cheap as drinks and food on Court Street.”

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Mallory Haack is a senior at Ohio University in the School of Visual Communication majoring in publication design & information graphics, with a minor in art.  She recently completed an internship at the Gannett Design Studio in Nashville and is currently employed as a graphic designer for the Patton College of Education.  She loves to travel and has been to London, Paris, Sydney, Mexico, etc. 

 

What your favorite drunk food says about you

Drunk food is “food one eats after getting the beer munchies,” according to Urban Dictionary, which offers the example: “After 8 beers I sure can go for some drunk food!” Court Street offers an ample array of “drunk food” selections for hungry college students after a night out on the town.

But what does your favorite drunk food really say about you?

1. Jimmy John’s, 16 S. Court Street

Established in 1983, Jimmy John’s is a proud server of “gourmet” sandwiches. I quote gourmet because there is really nothing gourmet about them. Nonetheless, when a restaurant is open past 3 a.m. it’s bound to attract business from intoxicated college students after a long night out at the bars.

If your go-to drunk food is Jimmy John’s, you are the lazy drunk, having your food delivered directly to your door.

“I order Jimmy John’s when I’m drunk because it’s really the only thing I know how to dial in my phone when I have been drinking, not to mention it has freaky fast delivery,” says Jessie Shockler, a senior at Ohio University. It’s no wonder the delivery is “freaky fast.” Who else would really crave a bland sandwich at 2 in the morning?

If you are a Jimmy John’s eater, you might be a picky eater making a drunken compromise. “I don’t even really like Jimmy John’s to be honest,” says Shockler. “I never eat it sober.”

I was shocked to learn Shockler does not order the classic Turkey Tom, which picky eaters tend to love. However, she did mention she orders the Italian Night Club every single time.

If you are a Jimmy John’s eater, you are likely an introvert and would rather eat your food alone in peace instead of rallying the gang to eat out.

2. Pita Pit, 8 N. Court Street

“Fresh thinking, healthy eating.” Pita Pit’s motto says it all. If you are a Pita Pit eater, you are a conscientious health nut and might be a vegetarian.

Lindsey Tennent, a junior at Ohio University, chooses Pita Pit as her go-to drunk food. “Being a vegetarian plays a huge factor in choosing where I eat,” Tennent says while standing at a local watering hole with her hair parted down the middle. She’s wearing dark red lipstick, high waisted pants and Alex and Ani bracelets. Tennent chooses Pita Pit because she says she feels sick if she eats anything else.

If your go-to drunk food is Pita Pit, you are “hip” and a “fly-by-the-seat-of-your-own pants” type of person. Tennent doesn’t care if she is drunk or sober, with people or alone, she will eat her black bean pita with hummus anyway.

3. O’Betty’s, 15 W. State Street

According to O’Betty’s website, “O’Betty’s has always been about great food, a great experience, a great fun environment in a great community.” If you go stumbling into O’Betty’s after a night out on Court Street, you are likely to go in arm and arm with your best buddies.

Tory Prichard, a senior at Ohio University, stumbles into O’Betty’s with her friends after a night out on Court Street. If you chow down on a hot dog and cheese fries at O’Betty’s like Prichard, you are an extrovert who chooses to share the experience with your closest friends.

Prichard chooses O’Betty’s because she is a pork lover. “I love bacon, anything with bacon.” O’Betty’s isn’t just on Prichard’s drunk radar, she proudly eats it when sober too. The O’Betty’s drunk eaters, in a nutshell, are fun-loving extroverts who would eat bacon over anything. ANYTHING.

4. Uptown Grill: 11 W, Union Street

I often wonder how the Chicken-N-Waffle sandwich was created. It was like some ingenious decision, and you don’t really know why you like it, but something about it is intriguing, especially when you are under the influence of alcohol.

Sara Portwood, a senior at Ohio University, always sticks with the classic Chicken-N-Waffle sandwich when she makes her pit stop at Uptown Grill on her way home from the bars. “I didn’t even know they had anything else on their menu, honestly,” says Portwood. Because really, what else would you get at a restaurant known for its classic Chicken-N-Waffle sandwich?

When I asked Portwood if she has ever scarfed down a Chicken-N-Waffle sandwich sober, she hesitated, then said, “Yeah I have. It was fine.”

“It’s amazing drunk and good sober.”

If you are among the Chicken-N-Waffle eaters, you have a care-free personality, you’re practical and like to stick with the classics. “I’ll eat Chicken-N-Waffle alone or with friends. I don’t really care,” says Portwood.

Portwood was thrilled to explain that eating a Chicken-N-Waffle sandwich takes her the same exact time it takes for her walk home from Uptown Grill. “It’s pretty perfect actually,” she says, “and it’s the best sandwich to eat when you’re cold to warm you up!”

5. GoodFella’s, 6 W. Union Street & 35 N. Court Street

Last but not least is one of Athens’ drunk food staples, GoodFella’s. GoodFella’s is for the independent “don’t need-no-man-but-pizza,” kind of girl who loves pizza more than life itself.

Katelyn Boyden, a senior at Ohio University, finds her way into Goodfella’s on her way home from the bars. “I love pizza,” says Boyden, plain and simple. She even went to the extent of dressing up as a slice of pizza for Halloween this year.

“I always get ‘two pepps with crust,’” says Boyden. A drunk and loyal customer to Court Street’s GoodFella’s, she has picked up on the lingo by now. However, Boyden, being the pizza lover she is, has never had GoodFella’s sober. “I’d rather get Papa John’s or something when I’m sober,” she said.

The list goes on for the places Court Street offers for the late night partiers in Athens looking for a bite to eat. But watch your step next time you go stumbling into one of these places. You could have someone judging you based off your drunk food of choice. Curious where you fit in? Check out the info graphic and see!

what does your favorite drunk food say about you

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Karlee Proctor is  a Strategic Communications student at Ohio University. She enjoys design and utilizes her strategic communications education in her self-taught design work. Karlee is a coffee enthusiast, loves the outdoors, enjoys travel/adventure and is a self-proclaimed professional music finder.