Last night I was lucky enough to get to visit the latest restaurant being opened by the guys who have brought us Bricks, Local Pour, Cliff’s Dive Bar, and Moco Game Room! The hip-stir in Marion is officially opened and let me tell you, you’re going to want to check this place out! The food, ambiance, drinks, and staff made this a place that I will be frequenting!
Upon entering from the back alley you walk up a small flight of stairs and are greeted with a amazingly creative interior. Booth seats enveloped by wooden barrels and old parlor-esque hanging lamps coming down from the ceilings really give the comfortable vibe of your favorite speakeasy/pub. Upon being greeted by the friendly staff, we were sat in one of the wooden barrel booths to the delight of my kids.
Waters for the kids…beer for me. A nice mix of craft beers and domestic bottles were available along with some creative cocktails (ordering at least 1 next time) and a number of wines for the wine lover to choose. The hard part was coming up….narrowing down what to order! Every single thing on the menu sounded unique, creative, and most importantly delicious. I could be wrong but many items seem to be asian inspired which is perfectly fine with me! Onto the food:
*CALLAHAN WINGS – the wings were mammoth! Definitely not your traditional wing, these were oven baked and had a tangy/spicy sauce that seemed to be a mix of a buffalo/sweet and sour/orange chicken combination with big chunks of funky blue cheese. Terrific! These were a meal in itself and that tangy sauce hit the spot!
*HOT FRIED CHICKEN SANDWICH – Usually when your read hot fried chicken you are thinking Nashville hot or maybe a spicy breading, well the hip-stirs’ version might be even better. A kimchi sauce…that’s right…kimchi sauced chicken sandwich with black garlic ranch. Simply delicious! Sweet and spicy and don’t forget those seasoned waffle fries on the side!
*BIGGER BETTER BURGER #1 – just an outstanding hamburger. Probably a top 5 all time burger. Two brisket patties, velveeta cheese, mustard sauce, onion, the coup de grace…pickled fresno chiles. The taste of the burger patties itself was delicious, add the accompaniments and it’s on another level. I’m a huge fresno chile fan and to get these pickled on this burger added a wonderful sweet and briney heat element. Excellent burger!
*PORK BELLY STEAM BUNS – this item right here will be ordered every time…without question. Sometimes steam buns can either be too pillowy and thick and too sweet…the hip-stir completely nailed the buns themselves. Not super thick, but enough to hold the ingredients on the inside. The pork belly was crispy and delicious and every steam bun needs that crunch and freshness from a cucumber. Add the kimchi sauce and you have a deathbed meal right here! THE BEST!!
OVERALL: Can’t say enough good things about the place really. I was blown away and it will be a place I return to frequently. My picture taking skills are shit and don’t do it justice by any means so you simply have to visit on your own. Marion has some great things going for it and the hip-stir certainly adds a unique and delicious destination to an up and coming area! Thank you Tim and staff!