After my work pals and I went over to the Power and Light Earth Day event, we decided to hit up the Marquee Bar and Grill in the Mainstreet AMC. Wednesdays are half price burger days so I had a chance of getting a good burger downtown for under $10, not an easy feat since there aren't any fast food burgers downtown.
I was a bit taken aback at the ritziness of the Marquee B&G. The waiters and waitresses were dressed like waitresses at a white tablecloth restaurant and the dining room definitely looked like a formal restaurant. It was a very nice looking place. I guess if you're charging $10.50 for a burger you have to offer some degree of formality. I'd like to see how formal it seems when some douche, after a long night of boozing up Bud Lights in the bottle, wanders over from McFadden's at 2 in the morning and throws up all over his $9 biscuits and gravy (the Marquee has a late night menu and they are open until 4 AM).
Once we were seated our waitress informed us that Wednesday is also half price beer day. Woohoo! I'm not usually one for a lunchtime beer, but for half-price I might be persuaded. As I looked for something that noted what they had on tap, I noticed my boss sitting at the next table. I told my work pals “I guess I won't be having a beer after all” (not that my boss would care in any way whatsoever).
I ordered the burger they call the Swope, which is a burger “grilled to perfection” with blue cheese crumbles and bacon. I almost got the one with a fried egg, the McGee, but I didn't want to take the chance with them putting mushrooms on it, even if I ordered it without. We had already been in the restaurant for 15 minutes and service seemed slow, I didn't want to wait for them to make me another burger.
After another 15 minute wait our burgers arrived and they were monsters. But, they were the least impressive thing on the plate. The pickles were clearly the stars and probably what The Marquee wants to be known for. You know the whole pickles you get at a fair or carnival. These pickles are like that only they are cut in half and twice as long. Like The D, I don't care much for pickles, but one of my daughters loves them so I saved it to take home to her.
Also accompanying the burger was a generous portion of waffle fries. I could even see specks of Kosher salt on virtually every one. I'm not a fan of the waffle fry in general, but these were very good. They had a nice crunch and plenty of flavor which doesn't usually happen with waffle fries. The burger was very big with lettuce, onion and tomato on the side. They didn't overdo it with the blue cheese which I appreciated. I only got 2 thin slices of bacon on the burger and they were too long so I ripped them in half and it appeared that I had 4 regular slices of bacon.
I'm not going to rave about the burger. It was pretty good. If I had paid the $10.75 list price, I'd be looking for a refund, but for $5.50 or so, it was perfectly reasonable. I don't think the Swope will be on too many KC top ten burger lists but it's not an embarrassment. In fact, I will say that the blue cheese really added something which I don't usually find with blue cheese. It was a nice accompaniment for the burger, I'm glad I didn't sub out for provolone like one of my friends did. In fact, with the ability to sub out the blue cheese there is no difference between the Pendergast and the Swope other than bacon. So if you do the math, Marquee Bar and Grill prices their bacon at 25 cents. But on the late night menu, a side of bacon costs $5. I don't know, I find that interesting.
I would not recommend eating at the Marquee unless you're extremely wealthy OR are there on a half price burger day. I would also not eat there if I were in a hurry as our lunch took an hour and 15 minutes. But it is a nice looking place and the food is pretty good especially if you like pickles.
Update: If you go to the Marquee Bar and Grill website and sign up for the newsletter, you will get an email within 10 minutes offering you a free happy hour.
Please come and have a FREE happy hour party with as many guests as you can bring on Friday, April 24th! We will offer you two different times: 6pm or 8pm!
Starting at the time you choose, you and your party will drink the happy hour specials all night long!! You will drink the happy hour specials for FREE for two hours!!! Your guests will drink only $3 domestic draft beers, $4 wells, and $5 house wines. If you bring at least 10 people, you will receive two free appetizers for you and your whole party! Once 8pm or 10pm rolls around (depending on what time your party is) you will join the rest of your party and drink happy hour prices for the rest of the night!