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DMK Burger and Fish brings quality late-night food to North Campus

DMK Burger and Fish will open in mid-February on Noyes Street. From po' boys to turkey burgers, the new restaurant offers plenty of late-night food options.

DMK Burger and Fish will open in mid-February on Noyes Street. From po' boys to turkey burgers, the new restaurant offers plenty of late-night food options.

Rohan Nadkarni/Daily senior staffer

Rohan Nadkarni/Daily senior staffer

DMK Burger and Fish will open in mid-February on Noyes Street. From po' boys to turkey burgers, the new restaurant offers plenty of late-night food options.

Rohan Nadkarni, Reporter

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Living to the north and off campus is something like living in a desolate wasteland.

Grocery stores close early. People drink just to feel something. I’m pretty sure I saw a tumbleweed roll in front of a Frostbite Express Shuttle yesterday.

It’s also a dead zone for food. I can’t think of anything north of Philly’s Best, 815 Emerson St., that’s open late off campus. That, for people like me who live on Sherman and Noyes, is a bit of a problem.

Enter: DMK Burger & Fish. 

The brainchild of David Morton and Michael Kornick, who have already opened several popular restaurants in the Chicago area, will be a surefire hit when it opens mid-February, and is North Campus’ answer to Edzo’s. 

“I like to fish where there are no boats,” Morton said Wednesday during a preview event at his restaurant. “I feel like we offer something very unique in this area. I don’t think we reinvented the wheel, but I don’t think there’s a word for the style of food we serve.”

Really? Because I could think of four: “Holy s—, that’s good.”

I sampled quite a bit of the fare Wednesday, and nearly all of the offerings were home runs.

DMK’s take on the po-boy, filled with fried shrimp, crawfish and a garlic aioli, made me feel like I had just flashed a stranger for some beads on a hot day in New Orleans. (Seriously though, it was amazing.)

The turkey burger was another hit, and I could go ahead and list every burger on the menu, but I’ll save you some time by telling you they are all worth ordering. The fries, seasoned with cracked black pepper and sea salt, made me proud of the day my parents decided to move to America.

Outside of the burger options, the fish is also a solid way to go. The cod filet sandwich is the perfect balance of delicate and fried goodness. A lot of people are skeptical of fish sandwiches (well, not my roommate Ryan Miller — he’s done unspeakable things to a BK Big Fish).

But DMK treats all of their ingredients with extreme care. Morton said he wants each of his ingredients to shine for their natural taste.

And it’s clear the quality of the ingredients elevates the menu to another level.

“We’re the largest buyer of grass-fed beef in the Midwest, outside of grocery stores,” Morton said. “If you asks me what sets us apart, it’s quality, period.”

Morton is aided by his generational upbringing in the restaurant business. His father runs the famous Morton’s Steakhouse brand. His sister recently opened Found, 1631 Chicago Ave. And Morton’s brother has had years of experience running various operations in Las Vegas.

When I spoke to him, Morton made it clear his latest effort will certainly reach out to students at Northwestern.

“Obviously being open late is one thing,” Morton said. “I also believe we’ve found the intersection of value and quality that will really appeal to students.”

DMK is also not at all intimidating to grab a bite. You don’t need to be a foodie. You don’t need to know what gastroeconomicpsychicology is. It’s a chill spot where you can drink a beer, listen to The Doors and hang out.

The space itself is very unassuming. It’s a small spot, featuring two long tables with communal seating, so be prepared to get to know that awkward hook-up you just bumped into. The bright red light is reminiscent of the Kenny Rogers chicken episode of “Seinfeld.”

So now, we wait. Morton told me he hopes to even have a breakfast menu, with some sandwiches or other items that fit in with the rest of their concept.

Until then, I’ll dream of waterfalls of vanilla milkshakes and trees filled with burgerfruit.

But don’t worry any more, North Campus dwellers. Salvation, in the form of a delicious, hip burger bar, is coming.

Twitter: @Rohan_NU


About the Writer
Rohan Nadkarni, Gameday Editor

Rohan Nadkarni is the Gameday editor of The Daily and a Medill junior. His past positions include Sports editor, assistant Sports editor and football beat writer. He is from Mumbai, India, and has interned at The Miami Herald. He has also been a college sports blogger at The New York Times.