Monday, May 11, 2009

Jack's Burger House

Well after a weekend of crawfish, sushi, bruschetta, prosciutto rapped asparagus and stuffed pork loin it was only fitting that we ended our three day food fest with the legend of all legend burgers, Jack's Burger House. Yes this is the same one as our original favorite burger joint in Dallas and is the benchmark for all burgers. FriedEd and I decided we had to see if the burger was as good as the original. If anything we knew the seasoned fries, which Jack's is famous for, would be delicious and boy were they to the tune of me getting a second order. (I also bought the seasoning to add to my spices arsenal.)

As we rode into the parking lot we couldn't help but reminisce about the many times we ate at Jack's. I recalled the time when I went to Jack's when I was about 10 years old and ate two burgers and fries before dinner, then proceeded to tell my mom I was not hungry cause I didn't feel good. Call it mothers intuition but she knew I indulged into something I probably shouldn't have and in quantities that make large grown men wilt. I proceeded to do this a few times in my youth and I wonder how I pulled that off. I realized today as I bit into the burger and fries that Jack's has and will always have a unique spot in my heart as my favorite burger ever. Is it the best ever? I am not sure but the combo of the double meat double cheese burger with the seasoned fries, extra seasoning off course, along with a homemade strawberry shake maybe the best hamburger meal available any where in the US.

If you ever get a chance to, stop by a location here or in Dallas and give it a try it will make you a true believer in that American classic that is the hamburger! (Get extra seasoning you will thank me!)


The Burger Odyssey has always been more about hamburgers and Jack's Burger House in Dallas, Texas USA is about more than just hamburgers. For the Odyssey, it is the Garden of Eden. It is a house of memories. Memories of a ten year old salivating over a piece of meat. Growing up in Dallas, it was an old time genuine place in a modern plastic metropolis. Dallas is a big modern city that lacks the sense of place that Austin has. Few "places" in Dallas capture it better than Jack's Burger House on Hillcrest Avenue. It is the one place in town you have to stop by on a visit. Opened in 1951 across the street from SMU by an old happy Greek man whose name I forget, Jack's quickly became the best burger in town. Jack's thrived in a town that preferred the fancy restaurant and it did it on taste alone, or at least a seasoning alone. The salted fries are addictive and it is a taste one never forgets and a taste that one craves, forever. But are we in Austin or what, why are talking about Dallas?

Well, a few years back a Jack's Burger House opened in Austin on Spicewood Springs Road and the Odyssey had to go check it out. Our taste buds forced us to do it. Now, the Jack's in Austin is a chain (boo), the first chain that the Odyssey has ventured to. However, the original Jack's in Dallas was possibly the first place the Odyssey ever had a hamburger, or at least the first place that the Odyssey ever fell in love with a hamburger. It was the first place that we realized that a good hamburger was more about just taste, though that is damn important, but a good hamburger is served in a place that has a story. As young boys we didn't care about the specifics of the stories, but we knew they were there and we could feel them and we knew that made the burger taste even better. And so we sat there as boys and we made our own stories, stories that are now memories. And on a quiet night in the Austin hills, all those memories came flooding back the minute those salted fries touched our taste buds. We reverted back to ten years old, as did our appetites (yes, we doubled up on fries). I usually try to convince readers that a burger is good. I will not do that for Jack's. If you do not like Jack's, you do not like hamburgers, period.

I usually do not support chains but I hope that Jack's opens up more locations in Austin because if I had to have one burger for the rest of my life, it would be a Jack's Burger, and Jack's fries and a Jack's milkshake. I am in love. Always have been.

Burger: 100
Fries: 100
Milk Shake: 100
Feeling of Stomach One Houre Later: It doesn't matter.