Friday, June 8, 2012

Burger Tap & Shake

Sharing the kitchen and keg space with District Commons, the Passion Food Hospitality restaurant known as Burger Tap & Shake is now anchoring the Circle, but takes the casual vibe to whole new realm. Burgers, shakes, fries, drafts, shaketails - they're all here! Using a premium blend of beef chuck and brisket, ground in-house throughout the day, BTS guarantees the best burger in town.  Breakfast is also now available. Closest Metro is Foggy Bottom.

BTS is a counter service, seat-yourself burger joint with an atmosphere of no-nonsense industrial chic: light cement floors, an exposed black duct work ceiling, and a cement bar faced with rough-hewn reclaimed wood. The walls of the open stainless steel grill-kitchen are lined with work-a-day subway tile. After you place your order, grab the buzzer and find a seat.  When your burger is ready, it is presented on a quarter-size metal sheet pan topped with a sheet of paper - no fuss, no plate!

I wanted to try one of their "shaketails" - a milkshake with liquor - and the Talladega Nights sounded fun.  Made with Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka, house made Limoncello, vanilla ice cream, and lemon juice, it was not overly heavy for this hot summer evening. The lemon flavors were minimal, most all I tasted was vanilla but it went well with my veggie Haight-Ashbury burger made with a falafel patty topped with pickled vegetables, Feta cheese, and a cool cilantro raita.  The falafel patty was large and full of spices, but about half way through became very dry as there was not enough of the yogurt raita sauce. The pickled veggies on top provided a nice kick, still the burger cried for some moisture.  Keith ordered the house burger, a classic presentation with lettuce, tomato, onion, and cheese. For extra flavor, he added Benton's smoked bacon, which were thick pieces almost like pork belly.  The smokiness really permeated the burger in a good way.  It must be noted that half way through our burgers, we realized we did not order any fries!  So Keith got up to place a separate order of French Fries and onion rings. The fries were super crispy on the outside and very spongy on the inside. It did not taste like potato and was a little odd.  The onion rings had a very different coating.  It was not batter-like that I am used to. Rather, it was a dry, crispy, coating that adhered well to the sweet onion, but again was a little odd in texture and flavor.  Overall, BTS had quality burgers and I appreciate the specialty options.  The "shaketails" are fun, and the interior design of the restaurant was clean and modern.  However, Keith prefers Ray's Hell Burger or BGR Burger over BTS.

Total Rating: 3.475
Food: 3.5, Price: 3, Service: 3, Ambience: 4, Accessibility: 5

What I ate:
Haight-Ashbury (Veggie)
Crispy Falafel Patty, Pickled Vegetables, Feta, Cilantro Raita

French Fries and Onion Rings

Plus Keith ate:
House Burger
Lettuce, Pickles, Onion, Tomato, Government Cheese (aka American),
AP sauce (Our House Blend of Mayo, Ketchup, Mustard, BBQ, and Chipotle)
with extra Benton's Smoked Bacon

Burger Tap & Shake on Urbanspoon

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