Walking through The Old Market section of Omaha provides visitors with an eclectic mix of experiences. Locals and travelers alike will hit up this neighborhood for some lighthearted distractions. Whether you are in the mood for shopping, entertainment, or dining you are sure to find something to fit the bill. Walking along the brick-lined streets, we happened upon The Monster Club. This place certainly caught our eye and since we were hungry, we decided to pop in to sample their scary good eats.
If you plan to create a themed experience, there needs to be plenty of consistency to your delivery. We had high expectations, as we passed through the door. The “greeters” ended up being a couple of familiar faces. The satisfaction of seeing these memorable monsters, from our younger days, raised our anticipation level higher. The designers of this space have gone beyond the mere placement of the statues and incorporated lighting that flaunts the creature’s features. It definitely adds an eerie feel to mealtime.
The server led us to our booth and we found ourselves rubber-necking, to take in all of the details, during the walk. Finding a monster-themed eatery is not a common occurrence, but this wasn’t our first. In Des Moines, we had a chance to dine with the undead at Zombie Burger. That place also offers up some scary good eats but uses The Walking Dead as the spark for its creativity. Here in The Monster Club, they incorporate a wide range of villains from the silver screen. From spooky to shocking and everywhere in between.
Now that we were seated, I lost no time exploring. With my camera in hand, I began checking out all of the fun details in the space. The main corridor, that leads through the restaurant, is lined with a bar on one side and booths on the other. The mirror-backed bar is filled with a wide range of movie character models. While checking out the various pieces, I noticed the monsters escaping from the wall behind me. The attention to detail really makes this place extra fun. Each booth comes fitted with a flickering coach light that adds to the ambiance. Beside the bar is a big screen that plays an unending loop of horror movies. During our visit, the screen was filled with ‘Killer Clowns from Outer Space’.
Getting Down to Business
Now that I had a good look around, it was time to settle in and examine the menu. Crystal and Amanda were already deep into their review, but I am usually quicker to choose. The monster theme takes a break when it comes to the menu, which makes selecting dishes simpler. Our server pointed out that The Monster Club is well-known for its barbecue. In fact, the bartender happened by and told us that they take their ‘cue seriously. Having competed on the BBQ circuit, they learned what it takes to deliver consistent smoky goodness. That’s all we needed to hear to help us make our meal decisions. After all, we have sampled our fair share of amazing Kansas City BBQ.
Scary Good Eats
Crystal and I decided to stick with handhelds. My pick was the Mash Burger, which includes a special feature. The chef disliked the way that grilled onions and bacon would slide around on his burgers. To solve this, he created his housemade Bourbon Bacon-Onion Mash, which is the star of this sammie. I am happy to report that it adds a delectable punch of flavor to this burger. Crystal chose the Pulled Pork Sandwich, which allows The monster Club to show off their barbecue skills. It was a smoky masterpiece that stood on its own without any sauce. Of course, they toss some in for those looking for an extra kick.
A Side Steals the Show
I have to make a confession at this point. Shamefully, I did not capture a good image of Amanda’s meal, which was the Brisket Open-Faced Sandwich. I must have been too distracted by the heaping mound of golden rings that were set in front of me. Let’s just say, I have always been a sucker for the crunchy bite of well-prepared Onion Rings. The Monster Club has got this down pat and tosses in a tasty dipping sauce to improve on perfection. We were glad we had decided to order the appetizer size serving.
Speaking of appetizers, we also tossed in an order of their Sweet Potato Fries. These were treated almost like a dessert and they make sure there is enough sweetness for everyone. The crispy strings are dusted with cinnamon and a sprinkling of powdered sugar. If that isn’t sweet enough for you, they also include an orange-maple dipping sauce that takes these fries to the next level. It was all so good that even after we were full, we kept nibbling. It’s scary to think of how addicting these bites became in such a short timeframe.
Break from the Normal
Our trips to Omaha offer us a break from the normal routine around Kansas City. The two cities share a lot of similarities, but each has its own distinct flavor. We relished our visit to The Monster Club and felt like we had stepped into a haunted castle complete with an array of creepy characters. The dim lighting and over-the-top décor really set the tone for an unusual experience. What really made it a successful visit was that this place is dishing up some scary good eats. The ambiance is fun to have but without good flavors, it would have left us feeling horrified. With lunch under our belts, we completed our spine-chilling stop at The Monster Club. Time to do some more exploring in The Old Market.