Mystery Diner | Kane County Chronicle

Mystery Diner in St. Charles: Filling Station Pub & Grill a relaxed destination

Filling Station Pub & Grill in St. Charles.

With Oktoberfest season underway and warm weather still in abundance, we found ourselves enjoying the patio at Filling Station Pub & Grill in downtown St. Charles.

Indoors, the heavily decorated walls pay vintage homage to the open road and old-time filling stations, and the fun space has ratcheted up the celebratory atmosphere with Oktoberfest pennants festooned across the spacious rooms.

The patio adjacent to the 1920 building that is home to Filling Station Pub & Grill in St. Charles.

We relaxed outdoors, watching the cityscape and enjoying a draft Oktoberfest beer. For folks more interested in fall flavors than beer, the Filling Station’s Filler Fall cocktails list spans a Pumpkin Spice martini or coffee, an Apple Cider Margarita and a vodka and blue curaçao-based Witches Brew.

The menu tempts with such appetizers as shrimp, calamari, wings and the loaded cheese fries, prepared with hand-cut fries, cheddar, bacon, sour cream, chives and jalapeños.

Southwest Salad at Filling Station Pub & Grill in St. Charles.

We focused on entrees for this meal, and I gravitated to the Green Fuel portion of the menu, landing on the Southwest Salad. The generous bowl arrived with a mix of romaine and iceberg lettuces, topped with grilled chicken, corn kernels, black beans, pico de gallo, avocado, pepper Jack cheese for some added zing, and crunchy tortilla strips.

Whiskey bacon burger at Filling Station Pub & Grill in St. Charles.

It turned out to be a good dish to share with my dining companion, who headed straight for one of the half-pound certified black Angus burgers, picking the Whiskey Bacon variation. Luckily, he too was happy to share, and I can vouch for a delicious burger featuring plenty of nicely crisped bacon on top, complemented by cheddar, grilled onions and a luscious Kentucky bourbon sauce. He requested it be cooked medium rare, and the juicy, flavorful burger arrived exactly as ordered.

Filling Station Pub & Grill in St. Charles.

The quality merited the outdoor, hanging sign proclaiming “Best Burger in the Valley – Since 1988.” It’s certainly right up there with favorite contenders.

The burgers come with a choice of sides, including potato salad, hand-cut french fries, house-made coleslaw or chips, with lettuce and tomato on a gourmet bun. We enjoyed the mustard-based potato salad with crunch from celery and carrot.

The array of burgers alternatively can be ordered with chicken breast or a turkey patty. Filling Station’s sandwiches range from pulled pork or Texas barbecue beef to a tuna melt and the Rocket 88, a grilled offering starring thinly sliced lean corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and a special sauce.

The relaxed pub is family-friendly with a lengthy kids menu, and provides a welcoming space for people with their dogs on the patio.

Our server was friendly and helpful, and we enjoyed a laid-back, casual meal in a throwback setting.

• The Mystery Diner is a newsroom employee at the Kane County Chronicle. The diner’s identity is not revealed to the restaurant staff before or during the meal. If the Mystery Diner cannot recommend the establishment, we will not publish a review.

IF YOU GO

WHAT: Filling Station Pub & Grill

WHERE: 300 W. Main St., St. Charles

PHONE: 630-584-4414

INFORMATION: www.filling-station.com