Monday, November 21, 2011
Burger review: The Burger & Philly Shack in Watauga
The atmosphere is not why you come here – the food is.
Well, we “cheated” a little with this one. Technically, the Burger & Philly Shack is in Watauga. But since we reviewed OC Burgers (which is just a block away), it only seems fair. And we are glad we did. Set in a very old strip center, this place is very unassuming and very easy to miss. In fact, the sno-cone stand in front has better visibility.
The inside is small. There are only a few tables. There is an outdoor eating area with some picnic tables for when the weather is right, however. Most people seem to get their food to go, so it’s not really an issue. The owner, first time in the food biz, was a huge fan of all things beef. He knew there were a lot of places to get a good burger but thought there was an opening in Fort Worth for a true Philadelphia cheesesteak sandwich. This is the signature of this place. The meat and buns are brought in daily from Philadelphia – how cool is that? And the sandwich is worth it. As people who have had cheese steaks in Philly, this is a real winner.
But this is a burger site, so we digress. The menu is small like the interior. You can have the 1/2 pound Shack burger or the 1 pound Shack Attack burger (yes, two patties is the only difference). These are your only choices. However, you can add some items to your burger like grilled onions, jalapeños, bacon, or chili.
You place your order at the counter and then find a seat. After about 13 minutes, our food arrived. Since we were the only people in the place at the time (except for take outs) we assume this was because it was fresh. And the taste supported that theory. The burger comes in a basket laced with white tissue paper and is garnished with lettuce, pickle, tomato, and white onion. And, of course, ketchup, mustard, or mayo.
The temp was hot, the juice was good, and the flavor was good as well. Rather than going thick, this patty is more round. So it is a tough one to eat and keep from falling apart – which means it has some juice. The bun is white and lightly toasted. (It was not from Philadelphia.) Unlike many places that say their burger is a 1/2 pound, this one really was. We were full after eating it. Cannot tell you what type of beef they use, the owner – quite the smart aleck – made some jokes when asked, which we will not post here, but never really answered the question. (It may be his attempt at some East Coast attitude.)
Cheese choices are American, Provolone, Swiss, Pepperjack, and, since this is a cheese steak place, Cheese Whiz. The fries are steak-cut and sliced fresh daily. We liked the thick potato flavor – probably better than the usual greasy burger joint variety. But, they were cooked in an odd oil, so they needed some help seasoning-wise. The portion of fries was average, not overflowing like some places we enjoy. But, as we said, we liked them.
This place has fountain Diet Coke and iced tea. There are also some chances to get some other fried items on the menu. It includes chicken and hot dogs. The atmosphere is not why you come here – the food is. We liked this burger – not enough to make our Top 10, but certainly could be Honorable Mention and definitely is better then OC Burgers just up the street. Check this one out.
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