I have visited Shake Shack in Boston, Chicago and now Phoenix. Shake Shack got their start in 2004 in NYC and has expanded to over 130 stores in under 15 years. Sometimes when these restaurants explode like that they lose some of the qualities that originally made them so great. I actually had a nice evening at this location. This Shake Shack is in the downtown Phoenix Uptown Plaza which is becoming a little mini foodie paradise with all the killer eats moving in. I went with my go-to item the SmokeStack burger. You can’t go wrong with a burger topped with cherry pepper relish, applewood smoked bacon and yummy ShackSauce. They use 100% all-natural Angus beef and are served on a non-GMO Martin’s Potato Roll. I love the crinkle fries and got mine with cheese sauce on it. Shake Shack makes a killer burger and the shakes and concretes are pretty amazing too. Tonight I got great customer service and lots of welcoming smiles from the employees.
“In Sight It Must Be Right”
Just recently we got Five Guys here in the Valley. Now another mid-west burger joint has made their way here. Steak ‘n Shake started in Illinios in 1934 and has been serving up burgers all over ever since. Known for their signature steak burgers and shakes, Steak n’ Shake now has a location on Tempe’s historic Mill Ave. I’ve always enjoyed visiting them when I traveled to Missouri and pretty excited to see them open one up here. The only disappointment is that we got the ‘signature’ restaurant which doesn’t include all the menu items from the original. I came here with my buddy Jeremy before ASU’s home opener and my steak burger hit the spot.
While I was in Pasadena for a football game at the Rose Bowl, I grabbed dinner at Slater’s 50/50 in the downtown area. I had read some amazing reviews about this place. Founded by Southern California native Scott Slater, he created a burger patty that is 50% ground beef and 50% bacon. Umm.. yum! I ordered the original 50/50 burger and it was delicious and so full of flavor. With so many ingredients and toppings to choose from, you can design your burger the way you like it. The wait to get in this place was a little long but worth it! I highly recommend trying the Slater’s 50/50 experience next time you are in Cali.
When I worked in a burger joint in college, someone once requested a fried egg on top of their hamburger. I remember scratching my head and thinking they were nuts. Well, I decided to do some research on where this originated. Japan, Hawaii, Australia? In Texas it’s called the Texan burger. Red Robin has a burger with an egg on it. Meatloaf is made eggs. But I couldn’t find anywhere on the internet of who started this. But I will admit I am a sucker for trying new things. So I decided to fire up a hamburger and egg and I will admit it wasn’t bad. I threw a jalapeno and onions on it to spice it up.
I usually don’t blog chain restaurants, but this was a fun family night out. I first went to a Five Guys (where they started) when I was in D.C. a few years ago -now Five Guys are all over Arizona. I went here with my dad and his family tonight. They serve a pretty good burger and free peanuts as you wait.
Sedona offers spectacular views, good food and many places to shop at. We stopped in at the Open Range Grill and Tavern after a nice hike in Oak Creek Canyon. This place is huge with large windows so you can gaze at the beautiful Sedona red mountains as you eat. They serve a contemporary American cuisine from steak to fish to burgers. I got one of their 1/2 lbs bison burgers with sweet potato fries. Their burgers are made with certified Black Angus beef and I topped mine with cheddar cheese and bacon. This place is a little pricey but will admit it was a killer burger and I enjoyed every bite.
I love Oktoberfest. Oktoberfest is a 16-18 day festival held each year Munich. Polka dances, sauerkraut, Bavarian outfits and great German beer are all things synonymous with the holiday. Here in Arizona, Oktoberfest is always the event I use to usher in the Fall weather (if you call 90 degrees Fall weather..). But what I love most about Oktoberfest is the great food. Bratwursts are the common food associated with Oktoberfest. But this month I discovered something at Red Robin that got me salivating – their limited edition Oktoberfest Bürger.
Red Robin’s Oktoberfest Bürger is a toasted pretzel bun slathered with beer mustard and topped with a fire-grilled beef patty, melted Swiss cheese, beer-mustard sautéed onions, Black Forest ham and green leaf lettuce. Wow… this was so good! I loved the pretzel bun, it was so moist and soft. I thought the pairing of the ham with the burger was a great combination. I also ordered a Sam Adams Octoberfest beer to help wash this bad boy down. Even though Red Robin is a chain and I’m more and more backing off chains, I will admit they bring out some great gourmet burgers. Plus they have a great loyalty program in which you can build up points to get free food every time you visit them. Great Fall item Red Robin – two thumbs up!