By Michele and John Oliver
Hopdoddy Burger Bar
1400 S. Congress Avenue
Price Range: From $5.00 – $9.00
Sleek, urban atmosphere with great customer service
[Jo:] Lansing is referred to in many ways, but I don’t recall it ever been called “weird.” But, one of the first things we noticed about Austin is that it is a “weird” city.
[Mo:] Don’t be alarmed, especially if you plan to visit. In Austin, “weird” is a good thing.
[Jo:] Absolutely! In fact, “Keep Austin Weird” is a phrase of endearment for Austin citizens. Historically, Texas has been a very “conservative” state. But Austin has managed to remain “liberal” and “progressive” in many ways including politics and culture. So the phrase has come to represent a way of life in Austin.
[Mo:] On any given day you will see people with various body piercings, colors of hair that resembles skittles, and tattoos galore. But what makes Austin so awesome is seeing people of various shades of brown all over the city.
[Jo:] When we first visited Austin earlier this year, we visited a chic restaurant called Cissi’s Market that served sandwiches, pastries, and specialty groceries.
[Mo:] I was looking forward to going back when we arrived in August. Unfortunately, Cissi’s Market had closed. It was replaced with Hopdoddy Burger Bar. The décor was sleek and modern, and the aroma of freshly baked hamburger buns teased my nose!
[Jo:] I was in the mood for a really good simple and classic burger with red leaf lettuce onions, tomato and cheese. But when I arrived I couldn’t resist the adventurous urge to try the Llano Poblano. The burger included pepper jack cheese, roasted poblano chili peppers and apple-smoked bacon.
[Mo:] I had the Buffalo Bill, which included blue cheese, hot sauce, bacon and did I mention that it was made from buffalo meat? Yes folks, I ate bison and he was good!
[Jo:] My burger was “bangin”, very flavorful, tasty, and utterly satisfying.
[Mo:] The burger was close to 1” thick; it was cooked medium well and was fantastic! It was juicy, flavorful, spicy and rich all at the same time. The shoestring fries that we ordered were crispy and sprinkled with salt and herbs. Yummy!
[Jo:] After the first bite, my taste buds were dancing in my mouth! The roasted chilies added an unexpected layer of flavor. Each bite was a little sweet at first and then finished with a kick from the perfectly aged pepperjack cheese. It was so good, we didn’t speak during the meal. I think you shed a tear as you ate the last burger bite.
[Mo:] I plead the fifth.
[Jo:] Needless to say, Hopdoddy is another place we will visit often; especially considering it’s within walking distance from our home. Now for our quote of the week. On a chalk board inside of Hopdoddy, patrons are encouraged to express how they felt about their meals or other tidbits of inspiration. However, one entry read as follows “Roses are red, violets are blue. Some poems rhyme. I like dogs.”
[Mo:] Keep Austin weird!
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This column was printed in the November 21, 2010 – December 4, 2010 edition.