Come For the Portobello, Stay for the Fries at The BSide

A vegetarian walks into a fried chicken joint — and finds a delicious portobello mushroom sandwich on the menu. If you’re looking to satisfy that hankering for something more than a salad, the caramelized portobello at The BSide offers meaty satisfaction — without the meat. New to the 17th Avenue restaurant mile, this comfort food haven has been frying up happiness since late 2014 and while not exactly a destination for plant-based diners, it’s a great option for any group of diners with a token vegetarian.

The mushroom patty is served up on a soft bun and topped with sautéed spinach, roasted red peppers, chive chimichurri, and grilled red onions sweetened with agave nectar. The sandwich is a tall mouthful, but the massive mushroom is toothsome and juicy from the the balsamic glaze, which mingles with the other veggies to form lots of complementary flavors. That mysterious creaminess is the chimichurri sauce, which doesn't actually contain cream, but creates a similar richness with a mixture of olive oil and herbs. Nonetheless, the BSide's adaptation of this traditional Argentinian sauce ties the whole sandwich together flawlessly. 

Bonus: if you opt for fries instead of a salad as your side (which we strongly endorse), rest easy knowing the cooks use separate fryers for the chicken and the fries to give the potatoes that crispy, golden finish — without ever coming in contact with animal products. The fries are worth a quick digression from the sandwich to fully praise their humble perfection. As the offspring of a particularly choosy French-fry connoisseur, I have spent countless meals watching in embarrassed horror as my mother sent back just about every plate of fries ever delivered with a request for them to be more crispy, but not overdone (shakes head). So imagine my delight when pleasantly surprised with a side of fries perfectly bronzed and crispy.

Now, back to the portobello. The sandwich is far from dainty, so you might want to ask your server to have the kitchen — where there's something sharper than a butter knife — cut it in half for easier transportation to the consumer (and your mouth). This vegetarian experience rings in at $9, lunch or dinner. Hungry for more? Try out the pickle n’ veg plate or the mashed taters — made with lots of butter and sour cream — from the list of sides. The BSide is open from 11am to 1:30am and has happy hour specials every day of the week. 

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Chelsea Keeney
Contact: Chelsea Keeney