Restaurant Review: Olivers Burgers Steaks & Bourbon
Olivers is a new spot downtown from FAB Dining.
FAB dining destinations are known for their distinctly over-the-top fabulous décor. Do up some gold swirls, add a few checks and some velvet -and you might have something that blends with the luxe decor at a FAB-establishment. Olivers, meanwhile, has a different look. For starters, it has lots of television sets. This makes sense, as Olivers is a sports bar. While the joint’s light fixtures might betray the work of an uber-creative artist, its decor is mostly defined by rustic brick walls.
And while Olivers clearly has the television sports scene going, it’s also made a serious commitment to bourbon. You can buy flights of bourbon, or you can go slower with two ounce hits of house-infused, small-batch bourbons in variations that include Almond and Clove and Honey with Cayenne and Thyme.
On top of all that, there’s also a well-developed menu for diners. Olivers is worth a whirl, even if you don’t like television sets, and even if you’re not a bourbon fan.
The favorite starter so far has been the Beef Egg Rolls ($10). First, the egg rolls (two) are as big as fried burritos: sheer quantity is something wonderful in itself. Inside the crispy shell is a fantastic melange of beef and cabbage and a few little noodles, all with a vaguely Asian flair.
For those who must have wings, there are more conventional Twice Cooked Chicken Wings ($9). They’re sizable knobs, with a few sauce options, the bourbon version seems the obvious choice -and it works well.
The Mac and Cheese Burger ($11) is sort of fun. A big patty (the menu says it’s a half-pound, and that looks about right) is covered with a heap of mac and cheese, shards of bacon and finished with thoughtfully shredded greens. At the end of the day, it is an unholy mess of a meal, but it certainly fills any need for a burger.
Meanwhile, the Chorizo Burger ($11) is a little tidier, and honestly, just as big. It’s decked out with an egg, manchego and some avocado sauce. The chorizo sausage makes the burger especially savory in an addictive way. Beyond that, there is a whole burger section on the menu: it includes various incarnations of the classic involving, egg, bison and lamb.
Alternately, there is a no-meat section on the menu, it includes The Fluffernutter ($8), which was another source of great gustatory joy. What lifts it above other Fluffer Nutter sandwiches (a combination of marshmallow creme and peanut butter) is the fact that Olivers’ version gets the french toast treatment. The bread is dipped in egg and fried, and the approach gives the sandwich extra body and depth to go with the sweet charge of its fillings.
Early incarnations of the menu had a version of Chicken & Waffles ($14) that featured a sweet little fried half of a cornish hen perched atop deep pocketed waffles. The latest menu retains fried chicken (though not in mini-cornish form) at the same price point, and serves it with the the swirls of the creamy macaroni and cheese that was much appreciated as a burger topping.
You can find Olivers in Lynn Alley, just off of its street address at 26 N. High. Online reviews suggest that the Olivers team has some difficulties during rush times. Things moved very smoothly during the visit at off-peak hours.
For more information, visit www.oliversonlynn.com.
Photos by Mollie Lyman of www.fornixphotography.com. Photos are taken at a different time than review, so discrepancies between photos and review may occur.