Thursday, April 29, 2010

Bloomington's Little Secret: Shanty Town

The definition of A-Hole-In-The-Wall: Shanty Town Burgers. It might as well be another "construction office" in this corner of Bloomington industrial park. I was getting nervous as we were driving into this residential neighborhood looking for "food". "What? They serve food out of the construction offices?"

Glad to know they actually do, and it's much more than just food. Nothing fancy about this place. Simple decor, bar tables, booth, ESPN on a plasma TV. It may actually be less one of your neighborhood eateries, but the menu is simple yet creative.

Outback Burger with Cactus and Green Salsae: Yea, cactus. Tell me, who has eaten cactus before? Unless I am stranded in the desert, I probably would never dream of eating cactus, much less liking the taste and texture of it. Granted that these cactus are all spikes-less, they taste similar to what I have expected: like cooked jalapenos. The texture is pretty soft like jalapenos...

Taste like jalapenos, and kind of look like jalapenos too.

California Burger: Add guacamole to anything, you get yourself a California style thing. Trust me, it's that easy to be a Californian. Plus, guacamole and bacon on a burger patty? How could it not be good?

Cajun Chicken Sandwich: Cajun spiced chicken breast on steam warm toasted buns. 

French Dip: Roasted beef sandwich with wanna-be Frenchie dipping sauce. haha!

Fish Sandwich: This has to be the biggest fillet sandwich I've seen. Micky D's stand aside please.

The burgers and sandwiches are good. Good for lunch appetite and wallet loads. Beefy patties with condiments and melty cheese. Burgers are good, but their Tater Tots are the real deal. People may come here for the easy and comfy sandwiches, but no one would leave without a mouth full of tater tots.
So crunchy and crispy on the outside. Golden brown color with no greasy feel. Yet so tender and softly mashed on the inside. I'm not talking about some gourmet chocolate shells, it's just tots! Tater Tots!
Don't you just want to have a handful of these babies? Don't tell me how many calories I just added finishing off the plate of tots. But whatever it is, it's well worth that extra 500 calories. 

It's always nice to know there are still comfort foods that are done right and perfect. As little as tater tots are, they maybe bringing the biggest impact to this Shanty Town burger joint. As Mike said it, these tots are like the great equalizer of humanity. You could be the CEO of a Fortune 50 company, or you could be the guy next door working in that "construction office", when you are in Shanty Town, you are just another customer eating their tater tots. Nothing more.


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