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» Dynamite in Dallas: Twisted Root Burger Co.
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Dynamite in Dallas: Twisted Root Burger Co.

By • Nov 15th, 2009 • Category: Burger Blog

With just one long weekend in Big D, I had a small window of opportunity to do some cheeseburger taste testing.  My Cowboys Stadium experience ended in a tie (great game, lame burger).  None of the Smashburgers in Dallas had opened quite yet.  I set out to find an awesome local burger with critical acclaim… the kind of joint I’d be hitting with regularity if I lived there.  The Metroplex’s answer to my hometown Vortex, I suppose.

twistedrootskyline

I found it in the neighborhood of Deep Ellum, within sight of the Dallas skyline.  It’s called Twisted Root Burger Co., and as the hand-painted window proclaimed, “It’s a Slap-Yo-Mama Good Burger.”

twistedrootwindow

Twisted Root, as I learned, has a pretty unique pedigree.  It was started by a couple of dudes who were looking to embark on second careers in the world of culinary arts.  Having walked away from jobs in the corporate arena, these were now-classically-trained chefs who, according to one, could “make Alaskan King crab legs in a champagne-pomegranate sauce,” but found themselves “always frustrated by the lack of a quality burger” locally.  They started Twisted Root, now “the only trained-chef-driven burger joint in town and one of the few restaurants that has its own pastry chef.”

twistedrootinterior

The masses have responded and positively flock there.  I stopped by at noon on a Monday, and the line stretched out the door and onto the front sidewalk: a good sign of a great burger.  I saw several law enforcement officials: armed plainclothes cops, even Dallas SWAT members in line: an even better sign.  I was starting to think I was onto something here.

Twisted Root’s burgers are half-pounders made up of a special blend of chuck and brisket, though they also offer turkey, buffalo, black bean, venison, and even ostrich.  They offer 6 kinds of cheese and 10 toppings, so you can create your own masterpiece.  Or go with one of their Specialty Burgers, the staff’s suggestions printed on the chalkboard menu:

twistedrootmenu

Twisted Root takes its side items pretty damn seriously, too.  “Roots” come as twisted French fries or hand-cut sweet potato chips.  Also available: onion rings, fried pickles, or fried green beans.  Can’t decide?  Get the “Fried Ride,” a sampler platter containing all of the above:

friedride

I got the Western Burger, Chef Steve’s favorite.  (He’s the pastry chef; I knew his tastes would be well-aligned with my own.)  It’s topped with pepperjack, bacon, jalapenos, and “a big fat onion ring.”

westernburger

What I got looked outstanding to be sure, although the “big fat onion ring” had mysteriously turned into a “big fat pile of onion straws.”  Not a dealbreaker, I guess, but a slight bummer nonetheless.

westerninhand

Any disappointment I harbored, however, quickly vanished with my first bite.  This was exactly the kind of burger I had been hoping to find here in cattle country. Superb meat: juicy and tasty, well-seasoned and expertly cooked to perfection.  The toppings were a wonderful blend of textures and tastes.  The jalapenos and pepperjack offered just the right bit of heat without ever turning the Western into a flamethrower-on-a-bun.

westernhalfgone

I was tempted to go back and try a second burger, but the line was still a dozen deep.  I settled for the next best thing: one of Twisted Root’s incredible milkshakes, offered in several flavors.  I got peanut butter, with a huge dollop of PB purposely stuck on the end of the spoon.  Wow.

Thank you, Twisted Root, for saving my burgergoing journey to Dallas.  Now I have a reason to go back.  And a must-visit spot to hit when I do.

twistedrootwall

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