Tagged: cheddar RSS

  • Chris 1:11 pm on August 26, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, ,   

    In the Buns Fresh Cut Fries 

    Returned to In the Buns to check out the fresh cut fries.  Burger still delicious (had the cheddar burger again).  Fries much better than the generic frozen curlies I experienced on my first visit (more pix in that post).  They also upgraded the tables–replaced most of the too-small tables that featured the odd fork sculptures with roomier tables sans art.

    In the Buns Burger Joint Fries

    The New Fries

    So the upshot: french fry upgrade and table upgrade = good experience.  Only cons: somewhat grating music, and I wish the combo price were a dollar or two cheaper (comes to $9 and change as is).  This is by far the best burger I’ve found in the area.

     

     


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  • Chris 10:47 am on May 3, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, , ,   

    In the Buns Burger Joint 

    Read on Chowhound about a new burger place just minutes from my office so had to give it a try.  Overall I was quite impressed with the burger.  It was very juicy and was a good size–6oz–no thin patty here.  Cooked on a griddle, nice crust development.  The cheeseburger has the cheese mixed into the meat instead of sitting on top…not sure about this technique, but at least they offer cheddar and other real cheese (non American) options.  The bun was good–well toasted, held up to the burger but was not overly bready, and was also top-toasted on the griddle, always a nice touch.

    They offer an array of quality sugar-cane soda options at the fountain–Maine Root sodas, and Dublin Dr. Pepper on tap.

    On the flip side, I thought the fries were pretty much terrible.  They were edible, but were run of the mill frozen curly fries.  Also not a fan of the interior and the tiny tables with the annoying flower sculptures.  The combo price, at $9+ after tax, is a bit steep as well.

    Overall, very good burger.  If they switched to fresh fries made in-house, I’d find it difficult to stay away.

    Check them out on Facebook (they don’t appear to have a dedicated website). Their Yelp entry has quite a few photos.

     


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    In the Buns Burger Joint burger

    As delivered--note bun top toasting

    In the Buns Burger Joint burger

    Nice crust development! Nice bun toasting as well.

    In the Buns Burger Joint burger

    Note cheese oozing out from within

    In the Buns Burger Joint burger

    Cross section showing cheddar distribution

    In the Buns Burger Joint fries

    Boring fries

    In the Buns Burger Joint sodas

    Dublin Dr. Pepper on tap!

    In the Buns Burger Joint interior

    Tables too small

    In the Buns Burger Joint sculpture

    Not a fan of these table sculptures...seem to be in the way

    In the Buns Burger Joint counter

    Order up

    In the Buns Burger Joint exterior

    They need better signage

    In the Buns Burger Joint

    In the Buns Burger Joint

    Blurry cross section...need a new camera

     
    • Jim Howard 3:44 pm on August 26, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      I live in Anderson Mill, and had no idea these guys were here! I’ll check them out this weekend, thanks.

  • Chris 10:45 am on May 2, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, ,   

    Dan’s Hamburgers–Good 

    Went to Dan’s recently, an Austin institution.  It’s a reliable favorite.  Griddle patty, frozen faux fresh fries.  Very good onion rings.  Nicely toasted buttery bun–they do the Standard White Bun very well.  Cheddar available.  Overall, a solid griddled thin-patty burger.

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    Order at the counter

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    Ambiance is a bit lacking

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    Medium burger and fries

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    Under the hood

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    Cross section--typical thin-patty action

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    Fries ho-hum frozen variety

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    Dan's Hamburgers Austin

    North Lamar location

     
  • Chris 9:20 am on August 31, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, , , wood fire   

    A Visit to Max Parfait 

    Max Parfait Hamburger TrailerFinally made it out to the HOPE Farmers Market on Sunday to cash in my Max Parfait LunchDeal coupon.  Overall, tasty burger, cooked well (still pink–see pix below) and good fries.  The bun is homemade and is nicely toasted on the grill (exterior bun grill marks is a major plus).  The burger patty is thick but not huge–I found the burger size to be just right–and is laced with some herbs, as you can see in the cross section picture below.  Had a good flavor.  I’m generally not a fan of mixing stuff into the meat before cooking, but this worked well.  Nothing overpowering in the spices.  The beef is cooked over pecan wood, which is a plus.  I got the cheeseburger (with cheddar, of course), which I recommend, but was a bit taken aback by the $1 surcharge for cheese (seems a tad steep, but I imagine it’s quality cheese).

    Fries are called “Belgian Fries”.  Not clear on what makes a fry Belgian (I did find some info at belgianfries.com, of all places, but no way to know if this is authoritative), but these were delicious, had a slightly sweet taste to me, and were seasoned with just the right amount of salt.  They fry them in olive oil.

    On the downside, it took a long time to get our food, but it’s a small trailer and of course everything is made to order, so it takes a while.  And the HOPE Farmers Market was not the most inviting environment on a hot August day.  Dusty hot surroundings.  Unkempt Austin Hippies wandering about, Yoga occurring inside one of the unconditioned spaces, incense wafting from another, etc.  There was a pleasant band playing there, which was a plus, but I found the farmers market very run down feeling, and hot, and dusty, and…hot.  Maybe it’s more pleasant during the spring at the height of the produce season.

    Oh yeah, also sampled the portabella sandwich, was good.

    So, would definitely eat at Max Parfait again.  Would love to see them land in a Brick and Mortar location with some air conditioning!  Currently, you can find the Max Parfait trailer at the Barton Creek Farmers Market on Saturdays, and the HOPE Farmers Market on Sundays.  Check their website for the latest details or follow them on twitter.  Hopefully they can aim that trailer up north during the weekdays.

    Max Parfait Trailer

    The Trailer

    HOPE Farmers Market

    The Setting (Hot)

    HOPE Farmers Market Vegetables

    The Veggies

    HOPE Farmers Market Band

    The Band (they were good!)

    Max Parfait Trailer Menu

    The Menu

    Max Parfait Belgian Fries

    The Fries (Delicious)

    Max Parfait Belgian Fries

    The Fries (Detail)

    Max Parfait Cheeseburger

    The Burger (note bun scrapage from over-grilling)

    Max Parfait Cheeseburger

    The Burger (with Cheddar)

    Max Parfait Cheeseburger

    The Burger (Cross Section)

    Max Parfait Portabella Sandwich

    The Portabella Sandwich

     
    • Max Parfait 9:42 am on August 31, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Hey Chris…thanks for making down to see us. It sounds like we didn’t bring our “A” game for you. I’m really sorry about that. We’re still working out some kinks, and hopefully your next visit can be a big improvement.

      Regarding the cheese, yes, it is a premium aged cheddar…a little pricier, but I think it’s well worth it for the flavor it gives the burger.

      We’ll keep our eyes open for potential locations up north…please say hello next time you stop by!

      • Chris 1:50 pm on August 31, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        No worries, everything tasted great. Will be back, but might try the Barton Creek farmers market next time 😉

        • Tim 5:50 pm on June 24, 2011 Permalink | Reply

          Would you have any idea on how to get a hold of the old 2Js special sauce?

  • Chris 9:18 am on July 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar,   

    Must Try Max Parfait 

    Just learned of yet another trailer that sounds like it has the makings of a great burger and fries.  I have yet to experience any trailer grub because I am just never in South Austin, where most of this trailer explosion seems to be occurring.  Max Parfait may entice me to head south.  Full details at their site, but the quick summary: wood-fired grill (this is one key to taking a burger from good to great), all-natural beef, homemade bun, fresh hand-cut “belgian” fries cooked in olive oil (a la Elevation), cane sugar sodas.  Sounds like a winning combination to me (no mention of cheddar though).

     
    • Zdean 1:16 pm on July 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Yes, WE HAVE CHEDDAR! We’re also working on finding a local source for our cheddar, which will make it even better…
      Also, since we’re in a truck, we’ll be getting mobile in a week or so to take our burgers throughout the city…stay tuned

      • Chris 3:43 pm on July 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Fantastic! Looking forward to giving it a try.

    • Frayton 3:25 pm on July 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Sounds like great stuff.

      In the meantime: I wish someone would make a real grilled chicken sandwich in town that wasn’t either… 1) a pre-frozen big chunk (sorry Top Notch) or… 2) ground like beef, which just doesn’t work for a primo chickenburger (sorry P. Terry’s). Something thin, pounded out a bit like a really good CFS should be, but grilled to perfection, weight-wise on the lighter side, just a bit of protein… chickenburger folks don’t need some big slab o’ meat… they are not big eaters, they need to save some space for the fries….

      Okay Burger Nation, I know this may not be the right arena to put this out there, but I don’t know of a Chicken Burger News blog….!

      thanks for listening.

      signed,

      The Burger News Guy’s brother

      • Chris 3:45 pm on July 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Heh heh, good luck, hermano. Surely there will be a grilled chicken trailer somewhere soon. In the meantime, you might consider jumping back to the red-meat side…you never know.

      • Max Parfait 4:15 pm on July 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        BNG’s Bro- great news! We’re going to have a pulled chicken bbq sandwich in a couple of weeks to round out our menu…fire grilled chicken & homemade bbq sauce on a homemade bun…it’s fantastic. We’ll let you know when it’s ready to be fired up!

      • Your Mom's 12:05 pm on August 28, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        you should try our “don ho” sandwhich (chicken breast) at Your Mom’s Burger Bar. http://www.yourmoms.net

  • Chris 1:03 pm on June 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, ,   

    Steak ‘n Shake Thumbs Up 

    Yes, another chain, but this place gets props from Respected Burger Heavyweight George Motz of Hamburger America and the venerable burger blog A Hamburger Today, so have been wanting to try it.  So out to Round Rock I went, via the shiny new 45 Tollway.

    First, a little background, gleaned from the above posts and the Steak ‘n Shake website–their beef is fresh, never frozen.  They have been around since 1934, based in Illinois.  They cook the burgers on a griddle using the smash technique, resulting in razor thin patties with some crispiness to the edges.

    I was surprised when I walked in to see that it is a sit-down restaurant with waiters.  Was expecting the typical fast food experience.  Then I was double surprised to see my food served on a real plate.  I mean a real porcelain plate.  Not a paper-lined plastic basket, not a school-cafeteria style bakelitey plate, but an actual breakable plate.  Nice touch.

    I opted for the badly-named “Cheesy Cheddar Steakburger ‘n Fries”.  I had to get some clarification before ordering it because the picture and description on the menu led me to believe that the “cheddar cheese” would be that liquified type of cheese glop, the kind you see at concession stands at sporting events that is spooned out of a hot vat with a ladle.  The waitress explained that they take actual grated cheddar, melt it in a cup, and then add it to the burger.  Thumbs up.

    Burger was quite delicious for what it is.  Cheese was plentiful and cheddary.  Meat-to-bun ratio good.  Fries were ok–frozen thin cut fries.  Good for what they are, but I always prefer fresh cut fries.  They were very similar to the fries at Freddy’s Steakburgers, or should I say that Freddy’s fries are very similar to Steak ‘n Shake’s…I can now see where Freddy’s got its “inspiration”.  They should have also taken the cheddar idea from Steak ‘n Shake (no cheddar to be found at Freddy’s).

    So, thumbs up to Steak ‘n Shake.  Just wish they had a location closer to central Austin.  There’s one down south and one in Round Rock.

    Steak 'n Shake Austin

    As delivered...real plate!

    Steak 'n Shake Austin

    Cheesy Cheddar Burger

    Steak 'n Shake Austin

    Fries OK

    Steak 'n Shake Austin Cheesy Cheddar Steakburger

    Cheesy Cheddar Cross Section

    Steak 'n Shake Austin

    Ahhhhh

    Steak 'n Shake Austin

    Their Famous Slogan

    Steak 'n Shake Round Rock

    Round Rock Location

     
    • sean 10:09 am on August 30, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Their burgers are frozen and thawed for use. Wendy’s is the “fresh, never frozen” boaster.

  • Chris 8:56 am on May 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, ,   

    Culver’s 

    Made it out to Culver’s on Braker/Kramer for the first time in a few years.  Used to go fairly often when my office was closer.  Decided to check up on them.  Still the same–good quality fast food burger, weak fries, no Coke, Pepsi.

    Culver’s is a chain based in Wisconsin, with two Austin locations.  Their claim to fame is the “ButterBurger”, which appears to be a regional burger style from the midwest.  Sollys Grill in Milwaukee seems to have invented it, and unlike at Culver’s, butter plays a very prominent role in their burger.  Photos of Solly’s butter burger show the burger practically floating in a pool of butter.  I found no evidence of butter on my Culver’s burger, so I guess they are paying homage in name only.  But they do boast fresh, never frozen beef, and burgers are cooked to order.  Plus they have cheddar, which is a rarity at QSRs.

    The burger reminds me quite a bit of Freddy’s, another chain that has recently entered the Austin market.  Both offer pretty thin/smashed patties, with the default offering a double patty burger.  Freddy’s does not have cheddar though.

    Overall, a quality fast food burger.  Pluses: cheddar (did I mention that already?), roomy booths (room for six), table delivery, clean environs.

    Minuses: weak fries, no Coke, Pepsi.  And still a fast food burger.

    But I’m a fan.

    Further details and reviews found at auslunch.com.

    Culver's Austin Cheeseburger

    Cheddar!

    Culver's Austin Cheeseburger

    Cheddar (but wish it were a bit more melted)!

    Culver's Austin Cheeseburger

    Edge Detail — a Bit of Crisping

    Culver's Austin Cheeseburger

    Under the Hood — Weak Tomato

    Culver's Austin Cheeseburger

    Cross Section — Bottom Veggie Placement

    Culver's Austin Fries

    Zzzzzz

     
    • Paula 10:41 am on May 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Tip from a Wisconsin girl: order the root beer at Culver’s, they make their own.

      • Chris 11:32 am on May 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Now that’s some good info there. Thanks for the tip Paula!

        • Frayton 9:13 pm on July 5, 2010 Permalink | Reply

          I go there for the fried cod. Best fried fish I’ve found in a fast-food place. Fries are, as you noted, kind of middle of the road, but at least they’re the crinkle cut. I go to the one out on Wm Cannon and Brodie and walk up to the convenience store for a Coke and sneak it in (the Midwestern-accented lady manager winked at me and said I could do this, she’s used to it apparently).

          • Chris 9:31 pm on July 5, 2010 Permalink | Reply

            I’ve also had the fried cod a few times and it is good. Nice tip on the Coke Sneak. Thank god for Dr. Pepper is all I can say.

    • Andre 2:13 pm on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Next time, skip the fries and get a side of cheese curds with your combo instead. They’re essentially bite-sized mozzarella sticks and worth every second you’re losing from your life for eating them.

  • Chris 11:19 am on April 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, ,   

    Top Notch 

    Made it out to one of my favorite burger places for the first time in a long time, Top Notch on Burnet Road.  It’s a rare original in Austin, going on 40+ years now.  There’s a very family friendly feel to it with the mother-daugther combo usually running “the front of the house” (I learned that phrase on Top Chef).  The burger is flame-kissed over charcoal briquettes, thin patty.  Fries are frozen.  Onion rings are made in-house and are tasty.  The fried chicken is good.  The classic signage is great.  They offer curbside service in addition to a dining room.  They bus your tables for you (you pick up your food at the counter).  Coke, not Pepsi.  There is nothing not to like about Top Notch.

    One thing that resonates with me about Top Notch is the configuration of the #2 with cheddar.  It’s the burger I always order, and it’s so perfectly conceived that I don’t have to alter anything about it–comes with grated cheddar, mayo, lettuce, tomato, pickle and diced onion on a toasted bun.  That’s the perfect cheeseburger setup in my book.  The fact that Top Notch has this precise burger configuration as a standard menu item indicates a harmonious concordance between my burger psyche and Top Notch that’s hard to deny.

    The beef at Top Notch cannot boast a hormone-free grass-fed antibiotic-free etc. provenance, like so many of the new burger spots, and the fries are not fresh cut…but it has something special about it that more than compensates for any of those shortcomings.

    Map of Top Notch.

    Top Notch Burgers

    Flame kissed

    Top Notch Burger Austin

    Standard American Burger Specimen

    Top Notch Austin Burger

    Cheddar!

    Top Notch Austin Burger

    Cross section

    Top Notch Austin Fries

    Ho hum fries

    Top Notch Austin Onion Rings

    Onion rings--very tasty

    Top Notch Austin

    Dessert available

    Top Notch Austin

    Old school interior

    Top Notch Austin Sign

    Great sign (tshirts available inside)

     
  • Chris 10:19 am on March 21, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar,   

    EZ’s Brick Oven and Grill 

    EZ's Austin SignEZ’s is almost a local chain.  Based out of San Antonio with only one Austin location and five in San Antonio.  Their Austin location is in the former 2J’s Hamburgers spot on North Lamar, across the street from Central Market.

    They sport a wood fired brick oven for pizza and flame-kissed burgers, along with chicken and salads and other options (full menu pdf).  My experience has been very hit or miss here.  Sometimes the burger is outstanding–juicy and full of grill flavor.  Other times it’s dry and overcooked.  They do offer cheddar and a few specialized burger options, like a poblano burger and a “bean burger” with fritos and refried beans.

    Fries are unremarkable curly frozen fries.  Onion rings are tasty and appear to be made fresh in house. Kids eat free on Wednesday nights–beware the clown.

    I think I will request a specific doneness next time and see if that results in a more consistently juicy burger.

    EZ's Austin

    Watch out for clowns on Wednesdays

    EZ's Austin Burger

    A bit dry

    EZ's Austin Burger

    House-made bun

    EZ's Burger

    Cross section--veggies on bottom

    EZ's Austin Fries

    Boring fries

    EZ's Austin Onion Rings

    Good onion rings

    EZ's Austin Sign

    Nice sign, a rework of the old 2J's sign

     
  • Chris 10:15 am on February 8, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cheddar, ,   

    Dave’s Hamburgers 

    This post finds me inside a mall eating at a food court.  That’s how sad the burger scene is here in North Austin.  Learned of this place just the other day so decided to give it a try.  It’s a local mom-n-pop joint in an unlikely spot–the food court at Lakeline Mall, next to the Chick-Fil-A and the Subway and the other generic food court eateries.

    My low expectations (given the locale) were exceeded by the friendly staff (defninte mom-n-pop feel to it) and the good enough burger.  I got the 1/4 lb. combo.  They use fresh beef and cook it on a grill, so there was some flame-kissed flavor.  Cheddar cheese is available, which is a plus. The bun reminded me of Moonie’s–a tad sweet tasting.  Top and bottom bun toasting in evidence.  Both buns were slathered with ample mayo–no DBS (dry bun syndrome) here.

    Fries were ho-hum frozen seasoned fries.

    So not bad for a food court.  Friendly mom-n-pop spot.  Conveniently located across from Frederick’s of Hollywood.  Certainly not a great burger, and I wouldn’t make a special trip to the mall just to eat there, but it’s worth a stop if you need a break between Dillards and Spencer’s.

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    Note top-toasting

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    Ample toppings and mayo

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    Cheddar

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    Cross section

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    No Dry Bun Syndrome here!

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    Bottom bun exterior toasting--a nice touch

    Dave's Hamburgers Lakeline Mall

    Boring fries

    Lakeline Mall Food Court

    Typical food court setting

     
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