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photo credit: Christina Slaton

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image
7.0

Jake Melnick's Corner Tap

$$$$

41 E Superior St, Chicago
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Let’s play a game of word association. When we say Gold Coast, what are the first few things that come to your mind? Our answers: large sunglasses covering the entirety of women’s faces, small hairless dogs in expensive fur coats, and that orange Lamborghini you’re likely to see in front of Tavern on Rush 95% of the time. Generally speaking, sports, beer, and bar food aren’t in that mix. And that earns Jake Melnick’s a few points in our book.

Melnick’s feels a little out of place on the corner of Wabash and Superior, but we are glad it’s there. Let’s be clear - we don’t think Melnick’s is winning any awards for an all around phenomenal restaurant anytime soon. But they do have great wings, a lot of TV’s, and a solid beer list, all of which make it enough of a reason to have on the radar.

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image

The wings are where it’s at, and we like to eat them when trying to catch a game. They are big, meaty, usually pretty crispy, and you get a good wing-to- price ratio considering the area of town. On top of that, it’s the sauces that put them on a high level. The traditional buffalo, super hot, PB&J;, and whatever the rotating special wing of the month is are all good. But it’s the firecracker wings that keep us coming back for more - a lot more. Even if you’re the kind of person who prefers a traditional hot wing, the balance of the sweet Thai chili and Sriracha in the firecracker sauce is almost always the move. Order them. And then maybe order some more.

In terms of everything else, we don’t love the food. It’s mainly a BBQ menu, but we think it’s average BBQ at best, and that might be a little generous. There are better barbecue joints in town, so don’t come here just for that. Come here for the wings, and to maybe catch some sports on TV.

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Food Rundown

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image

Firecracker Wings

This is why we come to Jake Melnick’s. The sweet and spicy balance on these meaty wings makes them great. A single order is a pretty solid size for one person, although, if we’re being honest, we usually want an order and a half.

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image

Traditional Buffalo Wings

Back to the wing basics, and another strong order. We’ll judge you a little you if you opt for these over the firecrackers, but it’s an acceptable decision.

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image

BBQ Nachos

Standard nachos made not so standard with barbecue sauce and smoked brisket or pulled pork. Get an order of these nachos as an appetizer to share as a warm up for the wings.

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image

Pulled Pork Sandwich

If you’re set on ordering something on the barbecue side, then may we suggest this pulled pork sandwich. We could go without some of the other major barbecue platters, but this sandwich and a side of fries isn’t bad.

Skillet Corn Bread

We also happen to enjoy their skillet corn bread. It’s thick, sweet, and buttery, and usually hits the spot for a little extra side.

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image

Grilled Cheese Burger

Sometimes this is a special. A burger between two grilled cheese sandwiches as bread.

8-LB. Monster Burger

A $50 burger that weighs in at eight whole pounds. Sweet sweet lemonade. Good luck out there.

Jake Melnick’s Corner Tap review image

Cookie Skillet

It’s good, so why not?

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