The Dispensary Lounge

May 18th, 2012 by Erik Chudy

lookin good!My readership is growing regularly, and along with that comes my list of recommended burgers, which I believe is up to about 30 right now. A few of them have been on the list far too long, but a new comment posted to my site the other day got me excited enough about one to try it a day later. Dispensary Lounge sounds like an awful place, and by the looks of the pictures on Yelp it didn’t seem much better. I typically don’t trust Yelp reviews all that much either, but the comments on there made it sound a lot like Henry’s which I’m a big fan of, so I was quite motivated. Could a $3.95 burger at a local dive bar actually be any good?

classy!The interior is just insane; I don’t know what else I can say. There’s a pretty typical bar to the left when you walk in, but the seating area has a combination of some amazing lounge chairs that look like something I would have gotten at Goodwill in college, and some 4-6 person booths with a faux Tiffany lamp hanging above them. The best feature would have to be the water wagon wheel on the back wall slowly spinning with the tiniest trickle of water pouring into it. A trippy carpet and some, um, interesting costumes on their aged waitresses makes this for one awesome assembly of ambiance.

I don't get the theme?The menu has a few standard bar options such as a steak & cheese, turkey club, nachos, but the star of this menu is the $3.95 Steak Burger: “1/2lb of juicy fresh ground beef charbroiled to perfection. Served on a garlic toasted bun garnished with lettuce, tomato and a slice of red onion.” What came out was pretty much as described, although my bun didn’t seem to be garlic toasted. The bun was in fact, fantastic; grilled, crispy, buttery and delicious, and sized for the perfect meat to bun ratio. The meat had terrific steak flavor, was cooked perfectly to the medium-rare I asked for, with good slight charred flavor. My Swiss cheese was melted perfectly, and the additional mushrooms were also really good. The lettuce, tomato and pickle were fresh and good, while the full slice of onion was a bit much for me but some love it.

yum!I will say that the plate sucked; I don’t necessarily mind if the burger comes out on top of the fries, but there was really no room to put the burger down not on top of them once I started eating, and the grease dripping from the mushrooms and everything really made a mess of my fries. And this is really a pity because the skinny fries were quite good, the bottom layer of fries were sort of inedible because of how soggy they had become. I wanted to dip the remainder of my fries in their great ‘mystery mustard’ but they weren’t really up to the task at that point. Still if my only complaint about this entire meal is the small plate, I think they’re doing something right…

That being said, how do I sum this up? The location is by no means anything fancy like Holstein’s or something on the Strip, but that’s exactly the kind of place I’m looking for at least. As this is a bar, I am sure it could get smoky at night, but being in there for lunch it was pretty quiet and fairly smoke free. The décor and ambiance were fantastic, and the fact that if I hadn’t added anything extra to this burger it really would have been $3.95 with the fries is just amazing. That’s cheaper than In-N-Out, a majority of the items on the McDonald’s menu these days, and is arguably far better than both. Do yourself a favor and hunt this place down.

Overall score: 94

9 Responses

  1. Liz says:

    I loved your description of “interesting costumes on their aged waitresses.” Spot on! As a former RAFI employee and a current UNLV one, I’ve been to the Dispensary many times and they do make a good burger. Completely forgot about this little water-wheeled gem so thanks for the reminder!

  2. Becky says:

    I been there many times in the past 5 years, I have enjoyed their food. The comment of the ” aged waitress” is not the purpose of this blog. To Erik – The staff has always been courteous and pleasent despite what outfit they may be wearing. You should go there on one of their “jazz nights” when there is live entertainment.. had a great time and the food was amazing as always.

    • Erik Chudy says:

      That’s funny, I could have sworn that the purpose of this blog was for me to talk about whatever I feel like, I didn’t realize it was my job to write about just the burger and nothing else. Is there someone else I’m supposed to be answering to? I will write about my experience, and that includes aged waitresses, ugly furniture, bad fries, horrible service, bad lighting, small bathrooms, or anything I notice while having a burger experience. people are gonna be really pissed when I write about other types of food from time to time as I’m thinking of doing…

  3. Becky says:

    Lol, yes you are correct, as a service worker myself, I jus felt that it was not polite to have taken a cheap shot a person in that nature, I’m sure that person was mad,& or hurt by the remark,, but I’m sure you understand,, but the burgers are still the best, carry on & enjoy your experiences.

  4. Cliff Lange says:

    As a result of your high marks, I came here for lunch while on a business trip to Vegas. The burger was delicious as described. A couple items to mention that looks like they changed since your review. First off, the steak burger is actually 5.95 for the standard burger and fries. Adding cheese, bacon and onions cost an extra .75 per item. It came out to be over 10 when you add the drink. They provided me with a paper plate to put the burger on so that it didn’t saturate the fries with grease. That was a nice touch. The other thing to be aware of is how they handle credit cards. They charge the card a minimum 20 and give you the remaining change in cash. I’ll have to explain that one to my boss upon turning in my expense report. All in all, it was a great burger. Thanks for the recommendation.

    • Erik Chudy says:

      I just heard about the price increase; it’s a little unfortunate but it still sounds like a great deal for that burger. I’m also glad to hear about the switch to a plate, thanks for letting me know! I totally forgot to mention the credit card issue, which I also experienced on my visit, sorry about that! Glad I could help with a recommendation for your visit!

  5. SJ Russo says:

    Before heading to Las Vegas, I read a number of your blogs, including the review of The Dispensary Lounge. I’m sooooo glad I did! The burger was unbelievable. My only regret is that I hadn’t read it sooner. I’m from New Orleans and have been coming to Las Vegas a 2-3 times a year since 1998.

    In addition to the food, the bartender/waitress went out of her way to ensure everything was to my satisfaction. I wouldn’t describe her as an ‘aging waitress’ and while she wasn’t in her 20’s, she was pretty dang hot.

    Again, thanks for the review!

  6. Casey Patterson says:

    Win! Best Burger ever!

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