Taps: 5 / Bottles: 30
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 52 | Reviews: 42 | Show All Ratings:
4.65/5 rDev +6.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$
It costs upwards of $13 for a hamburger and fries. Their kitchen is the size of my bedroom, and the entire restaurant is not much bigger than my apartment. On the weekends, you are almost guaranteed to wait 2-3 hours for a table. They do not take reservations, and in the summer, you can't even order their food to go. And if you're a vegan...fugetaboutit!
And yet, they are the home of the absolute best hamburger that I have ever eaten in my entire life. Their food is simply that good. Kuma's is easily my favorite restaurant in Chicago.
Kuma's is a metal-theme restaurant/bar, and their food is "heavy metal inspired" -- from the Iron Maiden burger to the Neurosis to even the Mac N' Cheese (which is second only to the Brickhouse BBQ in Madison in terms of Mac N' Cheesiness). Each of their uniquely crafted burgers features a host of interesting flavor combinations. Their barbeque sauce is delicious, their ketchup is home made, and their relish should be put on every burger. My personal favorite dish is the Neurosis burger. The portions are huge and every burger is served as it should be -- on a pretzel bun. I can never finish my entire meal in one sitting and always have left overs.
You can also feel incredibly comfortable ordering your meat medium rare at Kuma's and be confident that they will cook it just right. You do not have to worry about getting undercooked meat when you order your food -- that warning is fluff at Kuma's. The restaurant is so popular, the line to get a table is so long, and the food is just so good because so much love and care and attention is cooked into each burger. Each burger is a handcrafted masterpiece. I've even waited an hour in line at Lollapalooza -- where I shell out $90 a day to listen to nine hours of non-stop music -- just to get a burger because they are so tasty. No matter how long the line, no matter how big the hype, I promise that you won't be disappointed (unless you're a vegan).
Oh, and the beer? Kuma's always features solid every day brews like Gumball Head and a few rotating taps. Those rotating taps tend to feature outstanding brews like Surly Darkness, Zombie Dust, Surly Furious, and Greenbush Anger. So even though you'll inevitably have to wait to eat, at least you'll be doing it with a great brew in hand.
Like I said, the restaurant is a bit pricey, but it is WELL worth what you'll spend. The beer prices are run of the mill for Chicago, and the food is sized large enough that you'll have enough for a small meal tomorrow.
Oh, and did I mention they always play super schlocky movies on the TV? Like Godzilla versus some robot thing. Classic.
The secret to enjoying Kuma's without waiting is to either order carry out or go for a SUPER early dinner.
03-02-2012 21:40:01 | More by jegross2
4.38/5 rDev 0%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$
Finally got around to this place. After hearing rave reviews, I have to join the bandwagon.
A: A "metal-bar" with loud blaring music and crazy gore movies playing on the television above the bar. A long bar with a smoked out and foggy dining room. This place looks like something out of a movie. However, don't feel as if you wont fit in; there are people of all sorts here from businessmen to young adults to actual biker looking dudes. A friendly, yet intense setting.
S: The service here is excellent. The waitress/bus crew/ and bartenders are friendly and quick.
S: A good selection of craft beers both on tap and in bottles. I noticed a lot of local breweries ranging from New Holland to Three Floyds to Great Lakes. They have good seasonal brews and you will surely find something you like or have never tried.
F: The best burger in Chicago, bar none. I had the Led Zeppelin burger which was loaded with bacon, pulled pork, and cheese. Words cannot explain this heart-attack on a plate, you will just have to try it. Otherwise, I noticed they have pasta/mac n cheese, and other things to try.
01-08-2012 02:46:53 | More by cagocubs
5/5 rDev +14.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$
I live right up the road from Kuma's and visit this place religiously. It is a heavy metal bar that has a kick ass beer selection... and oh yeah, they happen to serve the best burgers in the world.
There menu is awesome. The burgers are all named after metal bands, and they are all freakishly good. I eat the Mastadon which is a huge patty with cheddar cheese, BBQ sauce, Alpha King battered onion strings (yeah, that's right) on a pretzel bun. It is the greatest burger I have ever had anywhere. They also do a create your own Mac-n-cheese that also is devine.
The beer list is good with all craft beer. They have a lot of Floyds, Lagunitas and Left Hand. Pretty decent bottle selection too.
The bartenders and waitstaff are very cool, however some of the management come across as pretentious. They are just too cool for school, if you get what I'm saying. That said, I would recommend this place to any and everybody.
The only drawback is that the place isn't very big and the dining room can fill up quickly. Usually long waits for tables, however if you go to the bar you can usually get right in. I love it.
10-31-2011 01:00:29 | More by osusullins
4.45/5 rDev +1.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$$
The best burg i have ever had in my entire life! If you like burgers than this is your spot, kumas has the craziest ideas for a burger too! I reccomend the led zep or basically any burger of the month, everyone ive had has always been amazing. The wait always sucks (like 1 to 2 hrs) unless you go early or late during the week. They also dont play any games so go during a big sports game and u might grab a seat right away. Pretty good beer selections when they arnt out. Good service, pretty quick too once you get a seat.
08-18-2011 02:55:44 | More by Davidpgibbons
4.72/5 rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | $$
What a cool place!! Very good beer selection tap or bottle. Being a metal head the music was not an issue for me, but be prepared, haha no Lady GaGa...
The place is small and being a warm day was a little uncomfortable being that our bar seats were near the grill, but the beer trumped the heat for a while.
The wait staff looks a little scary, but were cool once they had a minute to talk...very busy back there.
We didn't think to get a burger (DUH), but they looked Phenominal!!
Will definitely be back for the burger and some beers!
07-13-2011 15:35:55 | More by RayYanks23
4.4/5 rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$
Known for its amazing burgers and mac and cheese by anyone who has ever watch great burgers show on; Travel channel, food network, cooktv, ect.
All burgers named after metal bands, and unforgetable flavors and combinations. Favortie burger is lair of the minator.
They have a very good beer selection. They have a little bit of everything and are ever changing thir menu. Most definitly support local, craft, and independent brewers.
This is a very well know burger spot for Chicago. You will see everyone from Roller derby girls to men in suits who just got back from O'hare. Do not be suprised if you are waiting an hour for a table on at 9pm on a tuesday night.
PLEASE LOOK AT WEBSITE AND LEARN RULES SO NOT TO APPEAR IGNORANT.
06-13-2011 19:49:37 | More by elginirishpunk
4.75/5 rDev +8.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$$
This place has gained a LOT of attention over the past few years. Hands down, I have to say these are the BEST, and most UNIQUE, burgers I've ever tasted anywhere (and I travel for a living!). If you've never been to Kumas, regardless of anything else, you have to try the burgers.
Yes, the music is loud. It's a heavy metal bar, what do you expect? The art on the walls, the art on the staff, the music, they all contribute to the GREAT atmosphere here. Lots of people criticize the loud music and 'alternative' staff, but seriously those yups need to realize where they are.
Beer selection is pretty good, I can't say anything bad about it. Service is pretty good, though I'm biased since I know the manager there and get treated well.
Be prepared to wait. LONG. No reservations, not even for people like me with connections. Honestly, the burgers are worth the inevitable 2+ hour wait. Go during a "low" time of day. Friday-Sunday at any time is out of the question. Go on a weekday at like 4 or 5pm if possible. After your first time, tolerating an hour+ wait seems less and less worth it. For first timers though, WAIT!
Not much else to say than what has already been said. GREAT GREAT place, not to miss.
06-09-2011 01:14:26 | More by Northsider
4.38/5 rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 5 | $$
I was here last Friday night. It was a nice night so I was able to sit outside which I preferred because I'm not the biggest metal fan. The beer selection was very good - one of the only bars/restaurants with FFF Blackheart available and it was only $3 more than the stores sell it for. Also, I didn't see any macros on the menu so they basically tell you that you'll get craft beer and you'll like it!
I knew going in that they had solid beer but the reason there is an average of an hour wait is for the food and more specifically the burgers. To give an idea of the burger selection I ordered the Pantera which is Roasted Poblano Pepper, Bacon, Chedder and Monterey Jack, House made Ranchero Sauce, Tortilla Strips on a 10 oz patty with a pretzel roll. Amazing. If you're with a few people make sure you split the mac and cheese. They give you at least a pound of pasta and you can pretty much throw whatever you want in it. Incredible.
06-08-2011 17:04:17 | More by sgoro
4.5/5 rDev +2.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5 | $$$
As others have stated, this is a burger joint that also serves great beverages. I have been here several times and love it. Then again, I love red meat, strong beer, metal music, and chicks with tats--so, I do have some bias.
There are no reservations taken here...so, first come, first serve. And it gets packed....always...but especially when the weather is nice. They do have a patio area that is open, which helps, but expect at least an hour wait.
As I stated, been here several times and expect a meal for 2, with two rounds each to go for around $50 plus tip. It is well worth it for me, as I have always walked out satified.
05-09-2011 15:38:33 | More by Duffman929
4.18/5 rDev -4.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 5 | $$
Let's be frank: This isn't a place you go to specifically because of the beer. You go to Kuma's because of burgers that are life-alteringly delicious. If you've been here before, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't, these are some of the biggest, tastiest burgers around. Toppings include a bourbon soaked pear, roasted red peppers, onion straws, an egg, fries - you name it, you can probably get it on your burger. Throw in some of the best mac and cheese you can get in a restaurant (and is easily big enough to share), and this is one of the best places to eat in Chicago.
There are downsides though. Due to the popularity and the small size of the dining room (12 tables? 15?), it's rare to go there and have less than an hour wait, and wait times can easily get past two hours around dinner or on the weekend. There are seats at the bar where you can be served, so if I were to give a protip, it's to stand close to the bar near the beer taps (not the whiskey taps, and yes, you read that right) and try to grab a seat at the bar as people finish their food. Did that last night and turned being told there was a 2.5 hr wait for two people into an hour wait. Another downside is the constant, fairly loud death metal that plays while you're there. Kuma's has a rough and tumble vibe, all set by the metal theme that runs through from the art on the walls to the art on all the servers. If you can't stand speed metal, this place isn't for you. That being said, it's amazing how quickly death metal can fade into background noise.
On to the beer. They have 8 taps with a decent but not mindblowing selection (Allagash White, Smuttynose Porter, LH Milk Stout, FFF Alpha King/Gumballhead), and a better bottle selection than you'd expect - Saison Dupont, Tripel Karmeliet, Great Divide, Founders, Tyranena. Most beers are poured into a shaker pint, but I did see an appropriate Karmeliet glass, as well as a weizen glass. Beers are poured appropriately into non-pint glasses, and service is pretty good considering how busy the place is. Prices are about average for a Chicago restaurant.
So to sum up, if you want to have an amazing meal with an above decent brew, but are willing to wait for awhile and listen to lots of metal, go no further.
03-07-2011 03:50:48 | More by duffcalifornia
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Kuma's Corner in Chicago, IL
96 out of 100 based on 52 user ratings.