Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Susie's Drive Thru

Is the customer service great? No. Is Susie's über clean? No. But is the food delicious? Yes.

Susie's Drive Thru has been around for over 35 years and luck has nothing to do with it. It's situated on a noisy stretch of Montrose Ave replete with burnt rubber and fuel smells and it ain't pretty by any means. Enter the cramped, outdated interior and you'll see only three small stools and extensive menus lacking descriptions. It's hard to tell if they even want you in there, but honestly, they're going to survive with or without your business.

A moody woman asked for my order and while I wasn't ready (there are so many options!), my eyes must've been on the garlic Italian sandwich, for that is exactly what I requested after a short stalling period. I immediately regretted my decision though, thinking that I was going to get something akin to an Italian sub. But then, I was asked if I wanted it dipped and I knew things were looking up. I said "yes ma'am" and waited. Meanwhile, at the ice cream station, another employee made my caramel milkshake, another item I ordered without enough thought. I mean, when there are 65 milkshakes with names like Bermuda Triangle, Oreo River, and Summer Blast, it's hard to make up your mind.

When my order was up, I walked outside to a cheap, wobbly table. I unwrapped my damp, steaming sandwich and was thrilled to see that it was just a garlicky version of an Italian beef.

The beef was tender, thinly sliced, buttery, moist, well seasoned, messy, and heavenly. The sandwich seemed so plain, but it was truly so flavorful. I knew after the first bite that I'd be returning, even if it meant I would have to endure rude service.

The super sweet caramel shake was satisfactory. It tasted like soft serve ice cream blended with a few caramel syrup squirts. The whipped cream on top added a good creaminess, but something in the milkshake equation left a funky aftertaste in my mouth which could only be killed by more milkshake. Twas a vicious cycle. I also would like the option of whipped cream; I don't think it should be mandatory.

Back or Forth? I will be going back. But, because Susie's food list goes on and on with supplemental flyers too, I'd like to have some kind of explanation of the items made available...

Susie's Drive Thru - Irving Park - (773)395-9434 - 4126 W. Montrose Ave, Chicago, IL 60641 - Public transportation: bus 78 or the Montrose/Irving Park stops of the Blue Line.

garlic Italian (beef) - $4.78 (w/o tax)
caramel milkshake - $3.67 (w/o tax)

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