Sunday, February 21, 2016

Restaurant Review: Norm's Field of Dreams

We call it “F.O.D.” around here for short, but those burgers are big on taste!

A couple of weeks ago I reviewed B-Spot which is a fancy burger joint in downtown Royal Oak and realized while writing that article, that I had never taken time to post about Field of Dreams. These two burger places are really not to be compared because they offer a different type of menu and their atmospheres really aren’t’ in the same ballpark, no pun intended. But when it comes to a really good, and I mean good, straightforward burger, I really recommend Field of Dreams.

This is a sports bar, no frills. Before Michigan passed laws about smoking in public establishments this was a place I would go to during lunch or after work, during the week with my office mates. I don’t like eating in a cloud of smoke but the burgers were just worth it, especially on Wednesday nights when there were specials. Friday lunch also included a free lottery ticket to really reinforce those “dreams”. Once the smoking ban went into effect, it became a good place to also take the kids for lunch, especially on a Snow Day. Now that they are older, we also will go for dinner on the weekend if it’s early enough. While it’s a bar, I feel its friendly enough for the kids. There’s typically music on the jukebox, and folks playing dart and pool, but my kids enjoy the TVs all showing different sporting events, ranging from basketball, football and NASCAR this time of year.
The décor is typical bar. Lots of high tops, with a few lower tables, and the stools feature cushions made of out baseball bases. A string of bright green rope light marks the delineation between the ceiling and the walls and I suppose is to brighten the dimmed room. There is a stage for bands but I think that’s a Saturday night thing.

In terms of food, this is your typical bar food. There are your regular offerings of appetizers like chicken wings and jalapeño poppers, along with bar pizza and burgers. There are also salads and sandwiches. Like I said earlier, for me it’s about those burgers. You can build your own and while there isn’t a long list of choices like you will find in a gourmet bar, these are staples. Bacon, onions, sautéed mushrooms, along with a few choices of cheese, really does what it needs to do. The burger comes in a 1/3 lb. and ½ lb. offering, along with sliders.

What makes this burger so good? I’m not really sure but it’s definitely fried on a grill in their kitchen. I think that they are good at getting the outside crusty, and keeping the inside moist, when I ask for a medium rare. The meat is never overly seasoned and shines through. Their buns are delicious. I typically order mine with just American cheese (I know, very ungourmet) and a side of their Thousand Island dressing. I’m not a big French Fries fan typically but their fries are very good and I always upgrade from the potato chips. 

One of my kids loves their Fish Sandwich which is definitely an upgrade from a Filet O Fish from McDonalds. While he is typically very picky he never gives us a hassle when we plan eating dinner there. There’s also the obligatory grilled cheese but that’s just a typical bar grilled cheese and I have nothing to add to that. Their salads are very fresh if you want to try to have some healthy food at a bar. . . 

There’s a selection of beer that ranges from typical drafts to more of the microbrews. On this particular visit I chose an Illusive Traveler Grapefruit Shandy in a bottle that I will definitely get again. They offer all the typical things you would expect at a bar. For me, while it’s a bar, it’s really my local burger joint.

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