Thursday, April 14, 2011

Kenny's Burger Joint

Last August, the Burger Babes paid Kenny's Burger Joint a visit and it landed in the top 5 for many of us. So, when I found myself in the area the other day, I thought it would be great to revisit Kenny's for lunch. And it was a fantastic choice.

Because it was the beginning of the lunch hour, I was seated and served quickly. Kenny's does have some really unique twists on some typical burgers. The first time I went, I ordered a brie cheese and mushroom burger - yum-o! This time around I opted for the egg and bernaise sauce burger.

Served on cibatta bread with a slice of bacon, this was absolutely scrumptious and of course, way too rich. While the bernaise sauce was good, I think the burger would be just as fabulous without it. And Kenny's absolutely knows how to cook a burger. Stoneleigh P, take note. Just look at that bad boy!

You do have to order your sides separately, but you have lots of choices. This time I went for the regular fries, nothing fancy, just their special seasoning (a.k.a. chicken boullion). Wonderfully crispy!

Thumbs up, Kenny...another winner in my book!

Stoneleigh P

If you know the Stoneleigh P, you know that it's lacking two key elements of a good burger joint...french fries and ketchup. You read correctly, no fries, no ketchup. Fries are replaced by super crispy chips, okay that's doable. And apparently if you have connections, you can get some ketchup. Despite these two drawbacks, the Burger Babes paid this Uptown establishment a visit last week. After all, if your burger is good, the sides and condiments shouldn't really matter. Notice the emphasis on if...

Before we talk burger, let's talk atmosphere. The Stoneleigh P is actually an old pharmacy with a lot of the original fixtures still inside. Very cool! And there is a great patio at the corner of Maple and Wolf. If you don't remember last Friday, I will remind you that it was a perfect patio day, especially after a long week. The ten of us comandeered a large section of tables and made ourselves quite at home.

The Stoneleigh P has a small selection of burgers. The traditional burger is not so traditional; it is served on pumpernickel bread. Those who tried it were surprised by the great flavor the bread gave the overall burger. But the signature burger is the 'Shrop - cheddar and blue cheese melted together with a bed of spinach. Both burgers are served with a garlic mayo, which was definitely the bright spot of the burger. I had the 'Shrop, which also came with an onion, bacon, spice compote. Good idea, but it wasn't very noticeable. The consensus of the group was that while all the burgers had great potential, the patty itself was overcooked. And when the patty is overcooked, nothing else matters. When we told our waiter, he informed us that yes, the cooks do tend to overcook the burgers sometimes, especially the 'Shrop. Really? Do you think you could have told us this when you took our order? Or asked us how we wanted our burgers cooked? Thank goodness for that garlic mayo, that definitely helped out in the taste category.

So, unfortunately, I think it's safe to say the Stoneleigh P will not break the top 5 of most of the Burger Babes. Now if you're looking for some yummy cheesy black bean nachos, that's another story...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Spanky's is a long-held tradition in Lubbock, Texas. It is on University, right across from Texas Tech University and it's been a college favorite since 1982.

The burger itself is not really anything special to write about. I ordered a cheeseburger. It's pretty basic with not a whole lot of flavor. Really, there's not too much to say.

Really, people come to Spank'y because of the fried cheese, something they have taken to a whole new level.No, your eyes do not deceive you. That is fried cheese. And yes, it is fabulous, fresh and hot, but it's also pretty good after it's cooled down to room temperature. My friend Elaine says they're really good the next day, after heating them up in the oven. Spanky's had a whole host of other fried sides - pickles, mushrooms, and zucchini. I hope to tackle at least one of those the next time I end up in Lubbock.

As far as burgers go, Spanky's is definitely low on the list. But if you're looking for a fun patio in a college town with some great fried goodies, this is the place to be.

Casino El Camino

One of my favorite shows and go-to resources for interesting places to eat is Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. Guy Fieri always finds the most interesting places so when I travel, the Triple D app is one of the first places I look. Last week I found myself in one of my favorite cities, Austin, Texas, and lucky for me, Guy had found a burger joint for me.

Casino El Camino is on E. 6th Street. It is most definitely a 6th Street kind of place - dark and quirky filled with lots of character and characters.

After grabbing a table and placing my drink order, I walked up to the order window and ordered a KC burger - BBQ sauce, grilled onions, and cheddar cheese. In most bars, some kind of sporting event would be on the TV. Not this place. While I waited for my burger, I had the pleasure of watching one of my favorite movies, The Thin Man, while listening to an eclectic mix on the jukebox.

After about 10 minutes, my name was called. The burger is huge! It's 3/4 of a pound of locally raised Angus beef. And it was cooked absolutely perfectly. You know a burger that size with those fixins is going to be a mess and it was. But it was a very tasty mess. Because the handmade patty was so big, the chef was smart enough to put it on a big bun, This definitely helped, but unfortunately it made for a very bready burger. And yet, the combination of the meat and that bun really made the burger. As I progressed through the burger, I had to resort to just eating the patty - still good, but I realized it was missing a layer of flavor without the bun. I will mention that I had fries, but that's really all I need to say.

Overall, Casino El Camino is an interesting place to visit with some good burgers. If you're on 6th Street and you're craving a burger, it's definitely a good place to stop.