Saturday, August 8, 2009

Mike's Chili Parlor - Ballard, Seattle

What better way to combat a gray day than with a bowl of good ole greasy chili. That’s exactly what you’ll get at Mike’s Chili Parlor in Ballard. It’s a very straight-forward menu: Cup of chili, bowl of chili, or “big ass” bowl of chili. Do I even need to tell you why they call it the “Big Ass” bowl of chili? There are other things on the menu, but most of them would be, could be, and perhaps even should be topped with chili.

I ordered a bowl of chili with cheese and onions. The cheese is an extra fifty cents, and the onions an extra 25 cents. The cheese is finely shredded so it melts easier, and the onions are minced so you get the onion flavor without having to bite into an onion. The chili is meaty and has a fair amount of red chili beans incorporated. I’m not much of a bean-girl, and I absolutely would not have eaten it with kidney beans. Nevertheless, the chili was mildly spicy and not particularly thick. I prefer a thicker chili – and without beans – but it had good flavor. MIL Janice also got the bowl of chili with cheese and onion too. She seemed to really love everything about the chili.

I ordered some fries to dip into the bowl of chili. I was able to get the brothy part of the chili on a fry, but the meat didn’t really stick to the fries when dipped. Some folks behind us ordered the chili fries plate, and boy-oh-boy, it was a big plate of fries with the works. That’s the way to do it.
Bowl of Chili with a Basket of Fries

FIL Dave ordered the chili pasta. It’s not like chili mac, though I wish it were. It’s spaghetti noodles topped with just chili meat, no beans. He also ordered cheese on top. He mentioned that he wished the noodles had more of a chili sauce on it. It did look a little bit plain.
Small Chili Pasta

Dear Ben was the big winner tonight though. He ordered the chili burger. It was a fat burger topped with chili with beans. He added cheese and jalapenos. The best part was the way the juice from the chili soaked into the bun. Um, yeah. Talk about make-you-feel-warm-and-happy. It’s a knife and fork kind of burger. That’s what I’ll get if I go back to Mike’s!
Chili Burger

When you think of a chili parlor, Mike’s is the kind of place you’ll probably think of. It’s been in the same spot with the same good tradition for 62 years. Don’t forget to ask for your free side of “abuse” with your $2 Miller High Life, and bring cash - that's all they take.

Mike’s Chili Parlor
1447 NW Ballard Way
Seattle, WA 98107

Mike's Chili Parlor on Urbanspoon

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