Search This Blog

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Adair's Saloon - January 27, 2010

Yesterday's burger adventure took us to Deep Ellum to Adair's Saloon on Commerce Street across from Twisted Root Burger Company. Walking into Adair's at noon, you are met by the smells from the previous nights debauchery which shows that it is definately a dive bar but not necessarily what you want to smell while eating lunch. I was surprised that the jukebox wasn't playing as I fully expected to hear the King Bucks blasting through the speakers but instead ESPN was on the tv's which were showing the host from Man vs Food preparing to eat a 48 ounce steak at the Super Bowl. We sat down at our table and the server came over to take our drink order and after bringing our drinks, she asked if we were ready to order lunch. The only menu is a handwritten menu at the bar and choices are limited - burgers, cheeseburgers, ham and cheese and chicken sandwiches. We all ordered a burger and I ordered a cheeseburger with mayo and onions and a side of fries but they don't serve bacon so I was out of luck on that front. About ten minutes later the following burger was brought to the table:

The burger definitely looked impressive with the thick patty and thick slice of purple onion sitting on a layer of mayonnaise on the bottom bun. Another glob of mayonnaise was slathered on the top bun and a semi-melted slice of American cheese was place on top of the half pound patty. French fries were seasoned with what seemed to be a typical curly fry seasoning and were thick cut. I unwrapped my burger and immediately the untoasted bun started falling apart. It could have used some toasting to help keep it intact. Taking my first bite, the bun continued to crumble in my hands and I got a overwhelming flavor of mayonnaise and raw purple onion before getting to the relatively unseasoned flavor of the patty. The patty was cooked to a nice medium but could have used some seasoning. The patty was moist but not overly juice. I enjoyed the seasoning on the fries but the texture was hit or miss - some were crispy and hot and others were cold and flaccid. I am not sure what caused the difference but everyone at the table commented on the same thing.

Overall, Adair's Saloon cooked a decent burger that would probably be even better after a few pitchers or cans of beer while listening to one of the numerous live acts that play their stage. I didn't really like the bun since it crumbled so easily, the kitchen could have used a little less mayonnaise but the patty was thick and cooked well.

Ratings (1-25):

Bun - 16, crumbled too easily, needed to be toasted, detracted from overall burger

Meat - 19, fresh thick patty that could have used a little seasoning, no bacon

Appearance - 19, nice looking burger, looked good in the wrapper

Taste - 19, decent tasting burger, little too much mayonnaise and raw onion

Overall - 73
Adair's Saloon on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Updated Ratings Through January 20, 2010

82 - Angry Dog
82 – Roasters ‘n Toasters
81 - Maple and Motor Burger and Beer
81 - Chips
81 - Ozona
81 - Melios Brothers Char Bar
80 – Riverside Grill
80 – Wingfields Burgers and Breakfast
79 – Kellers
79 - Park
78 - Jake's
76 - JG’s
76 - Twisted Root
76 – Burger House
76 – Village Burger Bar
75 – Grape
75 - Snuffers
74 - Goff's
72 - Hole in the Wall
72 - Mighty Fine Burgers (Round Rock)
72 - Central 214
72 – Tre Amici
70 - Peggy Sue's BBQ
68 – Loon
67 – Gazeebo Burger
65 - Midway Pointe

Riverside Grill - January 20, 2010

Today's quest took us to downtown Dallas to Riverside Grill off Continental and Riverside. Riverside Grill is a breakfast and lunch restaurant that serves typical diner food like eggs and hashbrowns, hamburgers, hot dogs, patty melts and a blue plate special that was chicken and dumplings today. When you walk in you notice the slushie machines to the left, the kitchen in the back and a counter to order; however, the servers will ask you to-go or eat in and the counter is only for to-go orders. Grab a table and a server will promptly come take your order. There are two seperate dining areas - one inside the restaurant and what appears to be an add-on that has garage doors covering the windows which were open to allow smoking. We sat in the outside area which was pleasant due to the warmer weather around Dallas. There are several combinations of burgers to order including a mushroom burger, a chili burger and singles and doubles but I ordered the Bacon Double Cheeseburger with mayo and onions with a side of tator tots instead of the fries. About five minutes later the following burger was brought to the table:

The bun was toasted on the grill and mayo was spread on the lower bun which was topped by three thick slices on bacon, two thin patties, American cheese and two thin slices of whole white onion. The top sesame seed bun appeared to be have been pressed on the grill during toasting. I took my first bit and the smoky flavor of the bacon, the well seasoned patties and the fresh onion gave me a pleasant surprise. While the patties were too thin to cook anything but well done, they had a great flavor and all of the ingredients came together to provide a great burger experience. The bun was thick enough to hold all of the ingredients but the bread flavor didn't overwhelm the rest of the burger. I would have liked another slice or two of cheese which added to the burger but wasn't in the forefront of flavors like other burgers. The tator tots were cooked extra crispy and gave a nice crunch between bites of the burger.

Overall I thought that Riverside Grill entered a worthy competitor into our quest to find a great burger especially in the thin style patty area. The burgers were well seasoned, bacon was crispy and flavorful and the bun added to the overall package. I would have liked for the onion to be grilled and more cheese or maybe cheddar cheese but definately check out the burger that Riverside Grill serves.

Ratings (1-25):

Bun - 21, well toasted sesame seed bun

Meat - 20, well seasoned, thin-style patty, great bacon

Appearance - 19, fresh ingredients, well put together burger

Taste - 20, great taste, crispy bun, crispy smoky bacon

Overall - 80
Riverside Grill on Urbanspoon

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Gazeebo Burger - January 13, 2010

Yesterday's travels took us to the southwest corner of Preston Road and Royal Lane to Gazeebo Burger which has been serving burgers in Dallas for many years in this same location. The restaurant is very family friendly with tv's around the restaurant and video games in a back room behind the kitchen. They also have a covered outdoor eating area which is a nice place to eat on warmer clear days in Texas. Before you get to the counter to order, you walk past the condiment station which is full of fresh lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, onions, jalapenos mustard ketchup and mayo. I like the idea of being able to dress your burger to your liking. We placed our order at the counter and I ordered a 1/3 pound bacon cheeseburger with fries and a drink. About five minutes later the numbers for our table were called and I received the following burger:

The first thing I noticed was the jumbled heap of bacon with a single slice of American cheese somewhat melted across the bacon. The bun was slightly toasted and a smallish patty rested on top of the bottom bun. I was a little disappointed in the look of the burger but I put the top bun on the burger and took my first bite and all I tasted at first was the bun. The dry patty was cooked medium well and lightly seasoned with salt and pepper and the bacon added a crunch to the burger and had a good flavor but neither could break through the amount of bun. Maybe the better option would have been to order the half pound burger but normally a third pound burger is substantial enough. On a good note though, one person at our table ordered the turkey burger and said that it was very flavorful so that might be route to go.

Overall I was very disappointed with the burger at Gazeebo Burger. It was dry, not very flavorful and had way too much bun compared to the size of the patty. Also the cheese would have been much better melted directly on the patty. If I go back I will probably get one of the chicken sandwiches or one of their salads.

Ratings (1-25):

Bun - 16, bland very bready bun; too much bun for the small burger

Meat - 17, small patty with a little seasoning, bacon was crispy but not very flavorful

Appearance - 17, jumble of bacon and cheese on top of a small patty

Taste - 17, ok burger, not well seasoned, too much bread which overpowered the meat

Overall - 67
Gazeebo Burgers on Urbanspoon

Tre Amici Steakhouse - January 7, 2010

We traveled up north on Tollway to Tre Amici Prime Steakhouse and Seafood to try their burger offering. Tre Amici just recently opened for lunch and the restaurant focuses on steaks and seafood with an Italian flair. At lunch the restaurant was open and well lit and the smells from the open kitchen hung in the air. The server brought us fresh baked dark bread while we looked over the menu which had a multitude of different steak and seafood options but we were there for the burger which was a half pound Kobe beef burger. I ordered the burger medium rare with cheddar cheese since Kobe beef is usually better when not cooked to a very high temperature. Normally the burger isn't served with bacon but if you ask, they will gladly add it to the burger. We sat back and enjoyed the bread and our drinks and about 10 minutes later, the following burger was brought to our table:

The bun was lightly toasted and shredded lettuce and tomato was placed on top of the bottom bun. The patty was covered with melted cheddar was place on top of the vegetables and then two thick slices of bacon were placed in an x shape across the top of the cheese. Crispy fries with a light coating of salt and herbs were served on the side. Taking my first bite, all of the juices exploded out of the burger covering the fries and table cloth. Fortunately the burger was still very juicy after that first bite. The beef was lightly seasoned with salt and pepper allowing the flavor of the beef to come out in every bite. The cheddar cheese was very mild and unassuming as was the bacon. The bun was somewhat dry and chewy but held up well to the extremely juicy patty.

Overall I thought that Tre Amici did a good burger in a high end setting. I like the flavor of Kobe beef but it is not something that works best in a burger presentation. The flavors of the burger were good and worked well together but I don't think I would make a special trip for this burger alone; however, I would try it again if I had other reasons to visit the restaurant.

Ratings (1-25):

Bun - 17, dry somewhat chewy bun that was thick enough to hold the juicy patty

Meat - 18, extremely juicy patty cooked well and seasoned with salt and pepper, bacon could have been thicker and more flavorful

Appearance - 18, fresh ingredients cooked well, cheese melted perfectly on top of patty

Taste - 19, lightly seasoned patty, cheese and bacon didn't add much to the overall burger

Overall - 72
Tre Amici Prime Steakhouse & Seafood. on Urbanspoon