Does Orlando really need yet another burger joint? How many burgers can one Orlandoan eat? Well, Chad and I recently decided to scope out Smashburger, a recent addition to Orlando’s thriving burger scene. And for us there is a number of new places offering burgers for the veggie crowd, from house made black bean patties to quinoa and mushroom variety.
Gourmet burger joints have become all the rage- from Shake Shack to BurgerFi to Burger 21. Smashburger is a chain with over 300 restaurants in 32 states and 5 countries. Do not confuse this place with a McDonalds wanna be- everything is cooked fresh to order. Burgers don’t sit in a steamer and fries don’t cook under a heat lamp.
We had heard great things about their Vegetarian black bean burger– though the burgers are not made in house at each location, the recipe is exclusive to the Smashburger brand. However, one thing to note- the vegetarian patty is cooked on the same surface as the meat products- there is no designated veggie grill. If you can get over that then the veggie burger is pretty decent.
The Avocado Ranch Black Bean Burger is actually better than decent. The burger patty itself is spicy so the avocado and ranch were nice to cool the heat down a bit. Lettuce, tomato and pepperjack cheese add more flavor to an already tasty combo of toppings.
We ordered a few sides to share- one being the Smash Fries. Thinly cut potatoes tossed in olive oil, rosemary and garlic. Delicious and crisp.
We also tried the Fried Pickles. Chad and I are normally a big fan of fried pickles but these didn’t do much for us. A little too greasy, the breading was soggy and the pickles were very sour. Not the good sour most pickle fans crave, but a watered down soury blah taste. We can definitely find better fried pickles elsewhere.
Perhaps our most favorite item, however, was the Veggie Frites. Fresh green beans and carrot sticks flash fried served with a side of ranch dressing. These were pretty tasty and an extremely rare find in a burger place. I love that they served these- anything to get kids to eat their veggies is a big bonus in my book. Veggies rule.
In general, we liked Smashburger– the veggie burger was good and the veggie frites were unique, however, the fried pickles were passable. And most importantly, the veggie burger isn’t truly Vegetarian as it’s cooked in juices on the same grill as its meat counterparts. 3 1/2 out of 5 sprouts.