I love when I get the opportunity to taste things before the rest of the world - why? Because then I get to give you the sneak peek of what to get when you go! I want to take the guesswork out of your dining experience and this time - I give you a sneak peek and behind-the-scenes look at Smashburger.
On hand was Smashburger founder Tom Ryan - which, come on, is pretty cool to learn about a business from the man that started it! Tom said that he wanted to make a restaurant that had the best burgers and the best beers.
There were quite a few bloggers (and spouses) at the event - which was really fun to mingle with! Tom & Richard were up front - explaining more and more about what they're doing and what we were eating and drinking!
Also - something I didn't know what that the Moerlein Lager House offers tours of their brewery for $10 - which does include 2 beer tokens.
The burger was great - it was great to start with their Classic. Larry had a hard time stopping at just 1/4 of the sandwich! I kept saying - PACE YOURSELF!
I wasn't a fan of the beer but it turned out to be Larry's favorite - shockingly - the burger was his favorite as well! Why so shocking? Um he hates mushrooms! There were a few people that said the same thing, "We don't like mushrooms but we love this burger!" I loved it too - but I'm a mushroomaholic.
For me the OTR is too bitter - but I could see the pairing. Interesting fact too is that they customize the sauces depending on markets. So for OH/KY, we get a mix of a Kansas and Texas sauce.
Interesting here too with Smashburger is that they have a different specialty burger in each market: Chicago has something with a pretzel bun, Minneapolis an onion bun, etc...
I think of all the burgers - I was boring and loved the Classic Smash - it's traditional for them but it's very tasty. Next up we had some of their cow alternatives.
And let me say - if you like spicy - GET THIS BURGER. While it's not a traditional burger - this sucker will kick your butt with all that spicy! It was too much for me.
First up was the Classic Chicken paired again with the Barbarossa - which I thought was odd to have a dark beer with chicken - but it went well with it. I liked it more paired with this chicken.
The Classic Chicken is served with lettuce, tomato, pickle, red onion and mayo on a multi-grain bun. This chicken is extremely juicy! I couldn't believe a piece of chicken this thin could still have flavor?! Good stuff!
And after all of that food - what more could there be? Oh...just wait!
Then for the really exciting part and what I was most looking forward to...
Tom was going to teach US how to make a Smashburger!!!!
Their "smash" technique allows them to cook chicken and burgers in half the time - which helps them serve you faster without sacrificing taste or quality!
MCGRIDDLES!!! Seriously - he deserves a medal of honor. Tom - I am in your debt forever.