Saturday, April 9, 2011


Address: 300 E 12300 S, Draper, UT 84020. 801.307.0079.

Review: Okay, okay, I know I said previously I don't normally review big chain restaurants. However, like Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Smashburger is still small enough that I don't feel bad giving them free publicity. Alright, justifications aside, let's get to the food.

Smashburger specializes in large 1/3 and 1/2 pound burgers. The smash part of smashburger comes from the shape of these burgers. Apparently, in an effort not to look too pre-formed and pre-made, they smash the burger patty. This gives the whole burger a rustic look, I guess. Honestly, who cares, just as long as it tastes good. And it is to that subject we now move.

I ordered the 1/2 pound Spicy Baja burger.

It had pepper jack cheese, guacamole, jalapenos, chipotle mayo, lettuce, tomatoes, and onions, all on a chipotle bun. First, the bun. Soft, but with enough structure it didn't break down as I ate the burger. It didn't have any chipotle flavor to it, but that's fine. It was good. Second, meat. Lot's of it there was, and the slight char on the outside was done right. Unfortunately, like all fast food places, the patty was overcooked and a bit dry. Third, toppings. The cheese on my burger was almost non-existent. It was a tiny thin slice that added no flavor to the burger. The guacamole, on the other hand, was a cool, refreshing counterpoint to the hot patty. There wasn't a lot of the chipotle mayo, but what was there added good flavor. Everything else (lettuce, tomatoes, etc.) were pretty standard burger fair, and exactly what you want. In all, pretty good. Nothing mind-blowing, but good.

Now, the fries, or smashfries to be exact.

Unlike In-N-Out and Five Guys, Smashburger's fries are thinner, lighter, and airier. To get this lighter feel and texture, the fries give up a bit of fresh potato flavor, but the trade-off is worth it. Smashburger fries stay crispy throughout the eating process. And the rosemary, olive oil, and garlic concoction they put on the fries livens up the flavor. (Of course, these flavors don't go well with ketchup, so if you like ketchuped fries with your burger, order just the french fries.) Good fries.

In the end, Smashburger is a solid fast food burger-and-fries experience. That said, large fast food chains can only make okay food at best. Places like Smashburger will never give you a truly great burger experience. For that, you will need to find independent burger joints that use better ingredients and take time to cook your patty correctly. However, in the realm of large fast food chains, Smashburger might very well be the tops.

Rating: 6/10 (5/10 is average).

SmashBurger on Urbanspoon

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