Put another dime in the jukebox
The Hideaway Bar & Grill
The Hideaway Bar & Grill2565 Franklin Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95817
Everyone wants something different in a bar. Looking for a dive? How about the Flame Club (2130 16th Street)? Or if you really want to dive deep, the Chambers Room (701 J Street). A place to appreciate craft beer? How ’bout Pangaea Two Brews Cafe (2743 Franklin Boulevard)? Want to get a little dressy and hang with people in their 20s? LowBrau (1050 20th Street) is your spot. Want to see what the really cool millennials are up to (dubstep? Trap? Who knows?)? Go to Bows & Arrows (1815 19th Street). Are you gay and looking for something strong (both the drinks and, possibly, the guys and gals)? Hit up the wonderful Mercantile Saloon (1928 L Street). Are you a wine aficionado who maybe wants to delve into European wines? Go to San Francisco.
If you are, however, in search of a very casual bar with late-night, greasy, satisfying food to assist you in metabolizing some booze, look no further than The Hideaway Bar & Grill. The Hideaway fills a niche that Sacramento might not have known it lacked: It’s got a vague rockabilly vibe, with a lot of greased hair on the men, brightly dyed hair in retro styles and cat-eye glasses on the ladies, and an abundance of black clothes and tattoo sleeves for all.
It’s grungy inside, with a jukebox that seems to default to Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire” during any break in selections, pool tables, concrete floors and tattoo flash art on the walls. The bar’s liquor selection is basic, and craft cocktails isn’t its thing—you won’t find anyone spanking basil here. A boilermaker made with draft Olympia Beer will kick the night off right. If you’re not a smoker, the cramped patio will be unbearable on a weekend night. If you are a smoker, you’ll be stoked. Smoke up, Johnny!
The menu contains a selection of fried appetizers, salads, burgers and sandwiches. Fried pickles are a gimmicky food, and the ones at Hideaway would be better if they were from pickles that were truly brined rather than the limp, yellowish ones here, but they are served hot and crisp with a dill dippin’ sauce on the side. Big, sweet clumps of garlic cling to the garlic fries, but the fries themselves are overly oil-saturated and shriveled. On another visit, the fries with my burger have just emerged from the fryer and arrive pepper-dusted and crisp.
Side salads topped with parmesan cheese are an alternative to fries as a small concession to health. The beets in a red-beet salad are paired with feta, well-dressed and have bread-crumb crunchies sprinkled on them. The only drawback is the cinnamon-sugar glazed walnuts: Save this flavor combination for Cinnamon Toast Crunch.
The burgers at Hideaway are architectural, towering assemblages. Happily, the fluffy charred buns are sturdy enough to hold up when the tower is squeezed to a more realistic height. A burger with an excess of salt (it’s topped with both salty bacon and salty blue cheese) keeps a perfectly medium-rare burger just short of excellence. A meaty veggie burger (one of three veggie sandwich options) gets crunch from fried pickles and sweet heat from barbecue sauce. The fish sandwich is more like a crunchy batter sandwich with a little bit of fish, but the dill tartar sauce brings the whole thing together. The juicy slabs of breast in the fried-chicken sandwich are dripping with a spicy, vinegary hot sauce that tingles the taste buds, and just enough coleslaw.
A friend from the Northwest holds a particular fondness for the Hideaway because it makes her feel at home. She said what she wants from a bar is cheap beer, adequate bar food and a comfortable place to hang with her friends. The Hideaway has all this, plus the food is quick, the employees are friendly and “Ring of Fire” will probably be playing on the jukebox.