The student news site of Adlai E. Stevenson High School


The student news site of Adlai E. Stevenson High School


The student news site of Adlai E. Stevenson High School


Scorching Cuisine

Staffers review Buns on Fire
Scorching Cuisine

With its bold proclamation on the sign, “Burgers. Boba. Vibes.”, this restaurant goes beyond the ordinary to elevate the customer experience. The interior is a captivating blend of neon signs, artistic accents, and a dynamic wavy pattern on the ceiling, creating an entertaining and immersive atmosphere.

Since its debut on Dec. 16, 2023, Buns on Fire has seamlessly ingrained itself as a cornerstone of the Buffalo Grove community. Opening in 2017, this restaurant chain has honed its expertise centering around two culinary delights: burgers and boba, accompanied by a select few menu items. Embarking on our first visit, our mission was to assess the establishment across key criteria: customer service, pricing, food quality, and the overall dining experience.

From the start, the dining experience truly stood out. The staff were genuinely pleasant, which, combined with the food quality, surpassed our initial expectations, and the pricing proved to be fair and reasonable, with burgers around ten dollars and most side dishes approximately five dollars. Although the wait time slightly exceeded that of restaurants offering similar fare, it seemed that the elevated quality of the food was a worthwhile trade-off for the additional patience required.

As suggested by the interior, Buns on Fire seems to pride itself on their contemporary approach to the food they serve, boasting a variety of boba flavors for customers to try. One such intriguing variety was the piña colada blended smoothie, which we purchased with coconut jelly. The drink was refreshing and, true to its name, tasted exactly like a virgin piña colada. However, with the coconut jelly incorporated, the coconut flavor became slightly overpowering, rendering the smoothie better on its own or with another type of jelly. Still, the smoothie was texturally sound, with a smooth consistency that did not get stuck in the straw while drinking. 

Mozzarella Sticks

While the other dishes were enjoyable, the mozzarella sticks were an indubitable standout. Not too greasy, perfectly crispy on the exterior, and overflowing with gooey cheese, the mozzarella sticks were a delight. The flavor was pretty standard as expected, but the additional seasoning provided a delectable experience. While normally thought of as an appetizer to most meals, the mozzarella sticks proved themselves main dish worthy.


The seasoned fries boast a remarkable flavor profile, but don’t particularly surpass typical fast-food establishments either in quantity or quality. Consistency prevailed, with none of the fries under-fried or overcooked. Notably, the menu offered choices ranging from unseasoned to loaded fries, showcasing a thoughtful variety. However, there was nothing that set these apart from other fries, despite having a price disparity against fast-food chains such as McDonald’s. 

The Knockout

Given that the restaurant’s main selling point is their burgers, there were reasonably high expectations for the self-titled Knockout, a beef patty topped with lettuce, bacon, grilled onions, grilled jalapeños, tomato, pickles, cheese, mustard, and a fried egg. Additionally, the burger is topped with their special “bun sauce,” which was pleasantly enjoyable. However, given the extensive list of toppings, the burger was a little overwhelming and texturally confusing. Going by taste alone, the burger was a joy to eat, but each individual ingredient seemed to be smothered by one of the others on the burger, contributing to the textural issues. While the ingredient quality and individual flavoring were great, we would recommend maybe going for a simpler burger next time. Impressively, Buns on Fire demonstrated a commitment to catering to diverse dietary needs with several vegetarian menu items for patrons to choose from.

Oreo Biscoff Pudding 

The creamy dessert presented a luscious fusion of custard, biscuit, and Oreo flavors, orchestrating a delightful symphony on the taste buds. The soft and chewy biscuit pieces enriched the dessert with a decadent flavor. Buns on Fire showcased a tempting array of alternatives, including a banana biscoff and a chocolate biscoff, expanding the sweet offerings for those seeking diverse and indulgent options.


Nestled in proximity to Stevenson, Buns on Fire is a go-to destination for students, offering a space to unwind after school or indulge in a flavorful meal during lunch. The restaurant’s distinctive culinary offerings and overall experience contribute to a refreshing and unique atmosphere, making it a noteworthy choice for those in search of novel dining experiences. Whether you’re looking for a hangout spot or a place to savor delicious food, Buns on Fire proves to be a welcoming haven worth exploring.

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