After taking a break from all that beef, we were more than ready to head over to BurgerFi for their soft opening event tonight and give them a try.
Working on moving westward across the nation from their home base in Florida, BurgerFi (presumably short for Burgerfication), promises to give patrons a better burger by offering only hormone- and antibiotic-free, vegetarian-fed, all-natural Angus beef, which, according to them, means you're getting the "flavor and tenderness that we've come to expect in a fine steak, is now made possible in a hamburger."
Another reason they think you're going to love them sounds a whole lot like another unique burger chain that once graced The Waterway - each BurgerFi store is built with environmentally sustainable practices, and includes eco-conscious elements like tables made out of compressed recycled wood. BurgerFi also promises to maintain a low carbon footprint, with strict recycling programs for oil, cardboard, bottles and cans. All this minus the outdoor style grill that those other guys used.
But enough about all that - you want to know about the burger, right?
First off I gotta say, I ate too much! BurgerFi is fast-casual, with order-at-the-counter/buzzer-brings-you-back-for-your-food service. Though this was the soft opening night so we had our meal hand delivered, as many people did. The friendly guy at the counter, Mark, recommended the B.A.D. (Breakfast All Day) Burger, for me, so I took him up on it. This bad boy had American cheese, hickory bacon drizzled with maple syrup, a fried egg, hash browns, grilled diced onions, and ketchup. Served up fresh, the burger is only about 4" across yet when I picked it up and felt the weight of it... that thing could have been 10 inches across; man, it was heavy. Ok, yes it has several delicious items layered between the soft, supple potato roll and yes, it was more than I should be eating in one sitting, but, in my defense, it was really good! The fried egg wasn't quite completely cooked, producing just a smattering of that familiar yellow yolk, and the beef was cooked to near perfection, firm, juicy and full of flavor. The bacon strips extended outwards like a Howitzer Cannon from The U.S. Army's New 84-Ton Tank and definitely says "Check out these Guns!" This is one serious burger, don't let the size fool you, it really packs a punch.
Having just made my doctor so proud this afternoon, I wanted to keep up the momentum - so when Mark assured me the VegeFi Burger was good, I thought it was worth a shot. I wish I'd asked if the quinoa burger was a patty that BurgerFi created themselves, but I didn't get the chance. The "burger" came with white cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, and BurgerFi® sauce served on multi-grain bun. On the plus side, I have to say it was the best veggie-burger I've had in a long time. Usually, when a restaurant offers a veggie burger, it's either Gardenburger® or Boca Burger®, and neither are an option I relish (no pun intended). But the VegeFi patty had a great texture, and a flavor that was well-seasoned - no dryness or blandness here. The only downside to my burger was finding out on delivery the patty comes fried, standard. Apparently, on BurgerFi's website there's this "Secret Menu," which includes a Hippie Veggie burger - one that, while containing TWO patties, serves them up grilled - and with the removal of cheese as well, ends up with a net reduction in calories (and of course fat as well). Be that as it may, I was assured by the Juan, the GM, on our way out, that I can always get the VegiFi grilled if I prefer. So now that you know that, feel free to ask for it when you order.
But now that I was already "sinning," I went ahead and sampled a Red Velvet Concrete. This fantabulous blend of vanilla custard layered with red velvet cake was really, really good. Which also means it was really, really, bad... you know what I mean. ;-)
If you're a fan of real, fresh-cut, skin-on potato fries, you're in luck at BurgerFi. We again took Mark's recommendation and ordered ours "Urban" style, which meant they came with Parmesan and herb seasoning, and topped with garlic aioli. As big of fans as we are of garlic, we did find the aioli to be a bit overwhelming after the first few fries. But that's just us. We agreed next time we might just ask for it on the side.
And that's another one of the nice things we see BurgerFi doing that's going to make them a strong contender in the gourmet burger realm here in The Woodlands; not only are they offering a well-made, high-end product, they're allowing for total customization of your order.
BurgerFi offers two different varieties of been in their hot dogs, an all natural beef dog, and a 100% Wagyu Kobe Beef Dog. They offer dogs in four different styles, and of course you can custom build one to order. I'm considering trying the Chicken Apple Dog next time. Tonight, I ordered up a Chicago 100% Wagyu Kobe Beef Dog, to go. The Chicago Dog is topped with mustard, neon relish, diced onion, tomato s Lices, sport peppers, celery salt, and a pickle spear served on a poppy seed bun. Like I said earlier, I ate way too much already so I figured bringing it home might allow me to gain a little room besides, I thought, I won't eat all of it cause I'm really not a big fan of hot dogs, but this one just might change that opinion. The Kobe beef was delicious and the toppings gave it just the right amount of kick that just forced me to eat the whole thing.
BurgerFi has five different burgers on the menu (10 if you count the other five on the "secret" menu), along with the "build your own" option, where the possibilities are pretty well endless. There are also five different hot dog choices, each made with all-natural meats and a variety of toppings from the simple New York style with only mustard and 'kraut, to the Chicago style. Fries are available six or more different ways, as are the well-battered, large onion rings - all fried in 100% peanut oil. And if you still have room (and a guilt-free conscious), there are shakes, floats, cows, cups, cones, and concretes, all made with old-fashioned custard.
Also appealing is the wide range of beverage options, ranging from the Coca-Cola Freestyle® Machine, letting you mix your own beverage to your heart's content, to Boylan® sodas, real Coke, Fanta Orange, and Sprite brought in from Mexico and made with cane sugar, and for the grown-ups in your party, local craft beers like Southern Star Brewery from just up the road as well as wines.
Needless to say, our first try of BurgerFi was a good one, and we see plenty of reasons to give them a second shot. Maybe even a third. Or fourth... fifth... We'll let you know! Now that they're open, stop by and let us know what you think.
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