I expected to hate this place, but I loved it.
I'm not thrilled by the gourmet burger trend. And I am not a fan of Gordon Ramsay. I ate at his steakhouse at Paris and it did nothing to woo me. When I heard about Burgr, I honestly had no interest. As far as I was concerned it already had two strikes against it. I expected more of the same... all glory, but no guts. However, Frank had lunch there and had a highly enjoyable meal. He returned and again it was top notch, it was no fluke. So, he convinced me to give it a whirl.
We dined Sunday afternoon for lunch. Shortly after opening a line had already formed. We waited just a minute or two before we were welcomed and told that we could receive a text when a table was ready rather than waiting in line. It's a nice touch. We opted to wait it out near the bar since we were told it would be about ten minutes for seating for two.
I admired the beer selection while we waited. A wall of taps is always a beautiful sight to see. I was also impressed with how much restaurant they were able to fit in the old poker room and total rewards booth. They really did a nice job with the space.
Soon we were led to our table and we reviewed the menu. GR is plastered on the outside. This is the glory, I spoke of before. Fortunately, as I opened the menu I saw a glimmer of guts. The menu is simple. I adore restaurants that take the approach to do a few things and do them well.
Our waiter welcomed us and apologized that the iPad drink menus were down, we were in need of rehydration so H2O is all we wanted anyhow so no love lost. We asked to get started with an order of the jalapeno poppers while we perused the menu. Instead of only one fiery surprise, we asked that they all be hot and he happily obliged.
The poppers arrived in individual shot glasses. No sharing of dipping sauce required. This was awesome. There were no popper jousting wars over the sauce and you could even double dip if you wanted. The poppers are coated with panko, which makes the breading light, crisp and crunchy and the best part is that they are filled with cheddar. I was thrilled they didn't ruin them with cream cheese. Cheddar is the way to go and these had robust flavor. The jalapenos were tender and not a drip of water or grease pooled inside. I like spicy so with the seeds they had a bold kick. It was the perfect popper. No joke.
I wished another order was on its way, but I knew we had plenty yet to enjoy. We ordered the sweet potato and truffle fries. It's far too much for two, but I love sweet potato fries and Frank loves steak fries. Neither of us are usually to fond of the other. But these? They are an exception. I didn't use the powdered sugar and I could do without the jalapeno mayo because the sweet potato fries were just right on there own. Fried crisp, yet fluffy in the center and not the least bit greasy. I was in heaven. They even won over Frank because of the jalapeno mayo he loved the sweet and spicy mix. The truffle fries were intoxicating from the moment they arrived. The scent of truffle oil is unmistakable. I was afraid the fries might be soggy or goopy, but no crisp and fluffy. I usually hate on steak fries, but these were pretty darn tasty, uniform with skins and maybe soaked in a salt water bath? I'm not sure of the secret that sets them apart, but well done. Homemade ketchup and black truffle aioli accompany the truffle fries, but no sauce is required.
Now on to the burgers, the Chanterelle for him and Hells Kitchen for me. Now the chanterelle burger is misleading it comes with argula and figgy-onion jam, but the mushrooms are not the star, it's that figgy-onion jam that shines. The onions are so wonderfully carmelized the sweetness is stellar, imagine French onion soup wrapped in a soft chewy bun. The chanterelles earthy flavor was lost, but I'm not complaining as a whole it works. It was a fantastic burger! It's just that the figgy onion jam is undersold.
My Hells Kitchen was grilled to a perfect medium and had a great bun to meat ratio just like the Chanterelle, but it was the weakest link of the meal. Don't get me wrong it was a good burger with asadero cheese, avocado and jalapeno. But I wanted heat, with a name like Hell's Kitchen I was expecting a fiery bite, but it was a wimper. Heat didn't even register with my tastebuds.
We weren't planning to get dessert, but watching the shakes go by was too tempting especially after a second look at the menu. The Oreo shake was right up Frank's alley and the hazelnut and coffee was made for me. We took the shakes to go. They were the ideal cool treat for a hot day. Creamy and luscious from the pudding.
Prices are on par with the other gourmet burger joints, but this one actually warrants the price tag. Service was great even though the restaurant was slammed. Guts and glory, well played Burgr. Well played.