Cheap Thrills: Burgers and Ramen

Trenchermen and Kabocha, two spots where $10 goes a long way

If beer makes everything better, then really good cheap beer makes everything awesome.

That's why these new deals caught our eye: Two favorites are offering a full dinner and a beer to wash it down, all for only a ten-spot.

The burger at Wicker Park's Trenchermen is a staple of the bar menu–but at $14, it's far from a steal. Now, on Wednesday nights, you can score the burger and a craft brew for $10.

Toppings and beers change weekly; in one recent iteration, grass-fed beef, aged cheddar, and bread and butter pickles were nestled on a homemade sesame bun and slathered with an amped-up Thousand Island dressing spiked with Sriracha, ketchup, garlic, chili and shallots. The chosen beer? Half Acre's Akari Shogun, a pale wheat ale brewed in North Center.

At the West Loop's Japanese-inspired Kabocha, snag a stool at the bar to try a steaming bowl of ramen ($10 for the ramen and a 16-ounce Kirin, a Japanese pale lager, offered nightly).

"It's taken us months to get this ramen right," says chef Shin Thompson. He explains that, for him, the key to perfect ramen is the noodle texture, which comes from kansui, a special mineral combination he mixes himself that lends his noodles that covetable, springy chew.

Those noodles swim in a roasted pork and chicken bone broth that's simmered for two days and then spiked with spicy miso and black garlic-apple-chili paste. It's a major bowl of umami, topped with pulled pork, pickled mushrooms and a sous vide egg.

As you slurp away, toast to a weeknight steal.