Friday, May 16, 2014

West Campus Twisted Root Burger Company - AUSTIN DOESN'T GET IT YET!

Last week, I noticed that Twisted Root had opened up an Austin location, on 26th street just west of campus, between Nueces and San Antonio on the ground floor of the GrandMarc student housing building. We usually walk somewhere in the neighborhood for dinner on Friday night, if I haven't made something here, so we planned earlier in the week to take advantage of this new development.

James lived about the same distance from a Twisted Root Burger Company when he was in Deep Ellum. I've eaten at three TR's and have never waited in line less than half an hour to order. When we got to this outlet, there was NO ONE in line. Literally, the cashier watched us make up our minds. I have NO idea why Austin doesn't get what this place is yet, but I recommend you hurry up and eat here before they do.

The burgers are better than In N Out, better than Five Guys, as good as but along a totally different vein than Hopdoddy's... and the atmosphere is super fun. 

If you click on that picture to see it full size, you'll notice that the menu has Twisted Root burgers first. There are things like the Spicy Goat, which is a burger (hamburger, turkey, buffalo, veggie black bean, or whatever game they might have) with Chipotle sauce, goat cheese, and bacon. There's the Sexy Hawaiian with Jalepeno Jack cheese, teriyaki sauce, pineapple salsa and prosciutto. Or you could try the Enough Said with aged cheddar, house ranch sauce, and potato chips on top.

If none of their choices appeal to you, you can build your own with the choice of meats listed above, several bun choices (including one gluten-free), and a whole slew of toppings, including pickled red onion, peanut butter, fried onion strings, or a fried egg.

Although we forewent the side dishes tonight, I've had their "fried ride," which is basically everything, and they're all delicious. In addition to the usual fries, onion rings, and sweet potato chips, they fry green beans brilliantly.

They also have shakes, adult shakes, and drink specials. I had the banana and Bailey's Irish Creme shake in Deep Ellum (not tonight; I don't think people take kindly to the "I'm drinking for two" sight gag) and highly recommend that.

It looks like they have salads, too, but, really. Why?

After we placed our order, we got our name: Major Tony Nelson (from TV's "I Dream of Jeannie"). They actually gave us multiple choices rather than just handing us a moniker.

Behind the order station is the pickle bar, of which which neither James nor I took advantage. But if you're into that kind of condiment, then more power to you!

The dining area is fun, with lots of album covers, velvet wall art (yes, including a few Elvi and a unicorn), the leg lamp from "A Christmas Story," huge communal picnic tables, and this beer can peace sign.

We opted to sit outside.

But first, because I'm expecting, we always have to visit the ladies' room.

I really want this mirror. There was an awful/wonderful retro hanging lamp... Oh, and what's that? Graffiti? Already? On such a new place?

Yes. So. Back outside to the table to wait.

Check out the happy hour... hours. I can dig it. Oh! And then they finally call Major Tony Nelson, and my "master" heads out and comes back with these:

I got a Nathan's all-beef hot dog on a poppy seed bun with garlicky mushrooms and nacho cheese sauce. It was heavenly, and yes, Rooby and I ate the whole thing (much to James' surprise; he must not have been paying attention lately!).

James added ancho chipotle ketchup to his veggie burger with green chilis, garlicky mushrooms, and cheddar cheese.

Both of us loved our dinner, really enjoyed the gorgeous Austin actual spring spring weather, and basked in the relative slowness of business. Typically, our Twisted Root visits have involved scavenging for seats, talking above crowd ambient noises, and waiting a long time. This was heavenly. You should definitely get out and chow down before the rest of the town realizes that it's there!

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