Saturday, June 09, 2007

Road Food Pursuits - King’s Place

Today was a nice sunny day, perfect for a road trip. I hopped in the car and headed southeast of the Twin Cities to find a burger joint that had I read about in the past. It was time to investigate.

Miesville is a small farming community of slightly more that 100 residents. It is located south of Hastings on US Highway 61.

Although tiny, Miesville is a hotbed for amateur baseball and is home to the Miesville Mudhens. Driving in to town from the west, you can see the light of Jack Ruhr Field before you can even really see the town itself. You almost feel like you are driving to the “Field of Dreams!” Baseball is legendary here, and it has been for decades.

Also legendary are the burgers at King’s Place.

King’s Place
14460 240th St. E.
Miesville, MN

King’s Place in a small, unassuming bar located right along the south side of the highway in Miesville. If you are not paying attention, you could easily drive right by (as I did!). It is an old building (built in 1916, according to the menu cover). And while King’s Place might not look like much from the outside, the inside tells another story.

The bar and restaurant areas are finished with rustic knotty pine, and the walls are covered with all sorts of cool neon beer signs. It is a very warm and welcoming environment with a friendly staff. A small town bar at its finest. And did I mention they serve burgers?

Let’s face it, the reason you come to King’s Place is to have a burger, and that is what the menu is all about. I didn’t total them up, but it appeared that there were close to a couple dozen options to choose from, all with different toppings and condiments (make that upwards of four dozen if you count the option of 1/4 lb. vs. 1/2 lb.!). All of the burgers were named after terminology from the game of chess or (perhaps not so surprising) baseball!

Since I was in Mudhen territory, I selected the “Mudhen Burger,” 1/4 lb. size, which was topped with bacon, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and I added chopped raw onions to the mix as well. I also ordered fries on the side, and a diet Coke.

The “Mudhen Burger” at King’s Place

The burger was clearly hand-formed, nicely charred, and delightfully pink and juicy on the inside. An excellent fresh “beefy” flavor, too. Crispy bacon, creamy Swiss cheese, and raw onions were all excellent accompaniments, and I loved the kraut on the burger as well. This was great stuff! The burger tasted homemade, as a good burger should. Throw in an ample portion of shoestring fries on the side, and you have a wonderful lunch.

The prices at King’s Place are ridiculously cheap. My Mudhen Burger with an upgrade to fries was only $5.75. Throw in the diet Coke with some tax and my bill came to a mere $7.83! In this day an age, these prices don’t seem possible. Yet they are. King's Place offers one of the better values I have encountered in my various quests for burger greatness.

A trip to the Hastings area is worth your your time. It is very close to the Twin Cities. The upper Mississippi River valley is quite beautiful. Stop in at the Alexis Bailly Vineyard outside of Hasting and sample some delicious Minnesota wine (believe me, they produce fantastic local wines with some unique grapes). And since you are in the area, I would highly encourage you to swing down to Miesville for a burger at King’s Place.

And if you are there in the summer, take in a Mudhens game, too!