The Wicked Pickle Review: Wickedly inventive

Jessica Holbrook taste-tests the BBQ Bacon Burger, pulled pork, fried pickles, buffalo shrimp and traditional wings with wicked sauce and BBQ ranch at The Wicked Pickle.

4/5 STARS

Jessica Holbrook taste-tests the BBQ Bacon Burger, pulled pork, fried pickles, buffalo shrimp and traditional wings with wicked sauce and BBQ ranch at The Wicked Pickle.

I pulled into the parking lot of the Wicked Pickle a little confused.

My phone’s map app had directed me through residential streets to an unassuming brown building on Ninth Street SW. With a name like The Wicked Pickle, I expected to find a downtown bar, maybe painted green with an anthropomorphic pickle on a lighted sign.

The pickle does exist—he’s sporting sunglasses and a pint of beer—and though The Wicked Pickle is off the beaten path, it’s worth the trip.

The interior of the pub is the hip, fun space I expected. It’s a spacious, clean bar and restaurant with plenty of seating, including large booths for groups. The dining room area has a cozy brick fireplace and a pool table, and the whole restaurant has plenty of televisions, making it a great space to watch a game. A chalkboard advertises nightly specials.

It was pretty quiet when we arrived, and we grabbed a booth near the green-lit bar. Our waitress was sweet and attentive, and it wasn’t long until my husband, Dave, and I were tucking into a selection of unique appetizers.

The Wicked Pickle’s menu is inventive. It has your typical bar mainstays—nachos, jalapeño poppers, burgers—but with a “wicked” twist. It also has some unexpected items, such as the Buffalo pickled eggs ($4.99) which come with pickles and Sriracha onions, or the wicked egg rolls ($5.99) made with house pickles and pepper jack cheese and served with a Thai sesame sauce.

We ordered the buffalo shrimp ($6.49), a pile of fried shrimp coated in buffalo sauce and served on a bed of shredded lettuce with a side of jalapeño ranch. We loved the buffalo sauce, which had the perfect amount of heat and paired well with the jalapeño ranch, but I wish the shrimp had a better texture. They were more chewy than crispy.

The fried pickles ($5.99) are crunchy, flavorful and addictive. They’re served with a side of horseradish aioli that really complements the briny, salty pickles.

The traditional wings (six for $5.99 or 12 for $9.99) were big, juicy and perfectly fried. You have a choice of 13 flavors, including the signature wicked sauce, which tastes like a blend of barbecue and hot sauce. I’m a wimp when it comes to hot wings, so we opted instead for a split order of barbecue ranch and Smoked Onion BBQ, and loved both flavors.

Everything comes served on small metal trays or in baskets. I understand a pub wanting distinct, hip plating, but it’s hard to split appetizers on a miniature surgeon’s tray.

I ordered the pulled pork sandwich ($7.99)—a pile of flavorful, slow-roasted pork coated in smoked barbecue sauce and topped with pickled onions, jalapeños and slaw on a toasted bun. I loved the sandwich’s combination of sweet, tangy and spicy, but the slaw was completely overpowered and didn’t add a much-needed crunch.

I opted for a side of the crispy, salty homemade chips. I highly recommend them.

Other sandwich options include the Cubano ($8.99), Buffalo po’ boy ($7.99 for chicken, $8.99 for shrimp) and the tempting apple bacon turkey club ($8.49).

Dave went for a BBQ bacon burger ($7.99), which came topped with thick, crispy bacon, smoked barbecue sauce, onion straws, cheddar and pickles. Dave can be particular when it comes to burgers but declared this one a perfect medium rare.

He also ordered a side of wicked fries ($4.49 as an appetizer or a $3.99 up-charge with a sandwich), which come topped with beer cheese, wicked sauce, bacon and green onion. The fries were crispy and what I could taste of the beer cheese was excellent, but the wicked sauce, while delicious, overwhelmed the other flavors. I’d ask for it on the side next time.

Other “wicked fresh Angus burgers” include the spicy wicked burger ($9.49) and the intriguing East burger, which comes with pulled pork, pineapple, slaw, crisp wontons and pineapple teriyaki ($8.99).

The Wicked Pickle also has a small selection of salads and a kid’s menu.

The Wicked Pickle is at 1008 Ninth Street SW, Massillon. It opens at 11 a.m. Tuesday through Sunday (closed Monday) and closes at 1 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday (kitchen closes at 10 p.m.), 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday (kitchen closes at 11 p.m.) and 8 p.m. Sunday. You can order online at wickedpickle.us and can reach the restaurant at 330-832-5989.

Where to buy

The Repository
Select Rite Aid Stores
Spee-D Foods
Buehler's Fresh Foods
Fishers Foods, including 44th Street NW, Tuscarawas St. W, Fulton Drive, Lincoln Way E. and Cleveland Ave. NW locations
Aultman Hospital Gift Shop
Mercy Medical Center Gift Shop
Gervasi Vineyard Marketplace
Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, downtown Canton and Belden Village Mall locations
News Depot
Avenue Arts Marketplace
Yum Yum Tree Alliance
Grapes in a Glass