Monday, July 20, 2015

Burger Tap & Shake (Tenleytown) Food Review

Six Buck Chuck and French Fries

Burger Tap & Shake opened their second location today, this one at the corner of Wisconsin Avenue and Albemarle Street, NW in Tenleytown. The original BTS at Foggy Bottom is, hands down the coolest burger spot in town; so the idea of another one... even closer to where I live, is nothing short of headline news. What kind of headline, remains to be seen; but rest assured, this was the first of many visits.

For starters, the restaurant was packed just before 7 PM (obviously I wasn't the only one excited about today's opening.) It's a tight fit when crowded, and it was very hot inside (low-to-no A/C... first day hiccups.) Two cashiers took orders, and were a little slow (something to work on.) I placed an order for BTS' signature burger, the Six Buck Chuck with a side of French Fries for a grand total of $9.90, including tax. The kitchen was working very hard (four cooks, two expeditors) and my order took 12 minutes to prepare. The expeditor wasn't very friendly; but hats off to the manager/greeter, who walked by and remarked how delicious my burger looked. He's right, by the way: It did look good. Not sure who he was; but he worked the room with the kind of exuberance you expect on opening day. Color me impressed.

It started to get a little cooler; but there wasn't a seat to be had inside. Luckily, BTS has a fantastic, shaded patio... with several tables and a long "bar" with stools overlooking the Tenleytown-AU Metro east entrance. I immediately got down to business, chowing down on some very tasty fries. Most were nice and hot; but there were a few lukewarm ones mixed in. They're skin-on and delicious with very little seasoning.

My burger tasted terrific. Toppings are plentiful, and their House Blend of Mayo, Ketchup, Mustard, BBQ and Chipotle is dynamite. I asked for Medium-Well, and it was cooked perfectly... although a bit greasy. I love their buns (great quality, nice and big) but I'd prefer it toasted next time, if possible. If not for a few chunks of meat breaking off (making it harder to handle) it would have been perfect. For six bucks, it's insanely good... one of the best burgers in town (not limited to fast casual.)

Today's issues were minor; and considering it's opening day, to be expected. The Tenley location has the potential to be a genuine go-to hot spot (AU students are probably already drooling) and a Happy Hour haven. Their milkshakes are killer too; and I saw a wide range of ages (5 to 70) which bodes well for "neighborhood joint status." Toss in a superb location, and BTS' winning pedigree... and the sky is literally the limit.

Hours vary. Monday - Thursdays, 11 AM - 11 PM. Friday & Saturday, 11 AM - Midnight; and Sunday 11 AM - 10 PM. Happy Hours are 3-5 PM (Monday - Friday) 10-close on Saturday, and 4 to close on Sunday. Click here for Tenleytown's full menu. Check back in a few weeks for our follow-up review (Signature Burger time!)