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Friday, February 1, 2013
Smashburger (Dallas, TX)
I know what you're thinking, and no, Smashburger is by no means a barbecue joint. But they do have a barbecue burger on the menu, so I thought that was enough to merit a review. My wife and I have also been wanting to give Smashburger a try since this location opened near our apartment a couple of months ago.
Smashburger is a fast-casual restaurant, and they make things pretty simple: order at the counter, get your number, take a seat. It was extremely bright inside, so there's no hope for romantic ambiance here. The decor consists of the word "smash" in giant letters, and two huge prints featuring children stuffing their cute little faces with oversized hamburgers.
Just as planned, I ordered the BBQ, Bacon & Cheddar burger which, in addition to the obvious, comes topped with fried "haystack" onions. I couldn't decide what I wanted on the side, so I got an order of Smashfries (fries tossed with olive oil, rosemary, and garlic), and my wife opted for the Sweet Potato Fries (no explanation needed) so we could share.
The barbecue sauce was really the only thing barbecue about this burger, and the flavor from it wasn't exceptionally pronounced. It had a nice sweetness to it, but there certainly wasn't enough sauce. Of course, adding more might have made the bun soggy, so I'm not sure which way would have been better. The fried onions added a nice crunchy texture, but they also added a little too much unnecessary salt. I did enjoy the eggspun bun, which reminded me of the bread at Baker Bros. I liked my wife's sweet potato fries better than my Smashfries. They had a decent amount of flavor, and I could actually taste the rosemary, but something was off. Despite the menu description, my Smashfries were somewhat lacking in the garlic department.
There was a nice sear on the patty, although I'm not sure what exactly makes a "smashburger" all that much different from any other hamburger. According to the pamphlet on our table, they take a ball of hamburger meat and smash it onto the grill with some kind of unique non-spatula kitchen utensil, "creating a sear that locks in the juices as no other cooking method can." This is supposedly a revolutionary change from the antiquated method of smashing a ball of meat into a patty, and then putting the patty on the grill.
I will probably go back to Smashburger, but next time I might try the Spicy Baja. The food was decent, although I'm certainly glad we had already finished our meal by the time the busboy decided to bend over and show us his plumber's crack.
5319 E. Mockingbird Ln.
Dallas, TX 75206