The Burger at Smoke Should Be Recognized as a Texas Landmark

The EB&D Loaded Up and Truckin' Burger ($15) at Smoke, with thick bacon draped over the patty.EXPAND
The EB&D Loaded Up and Truckin' Burger ($15) at Smoke, with thick bacon draped over the patty.
Nick Rallo

A rancher’s gloves clapping together, bats exploding from the Congress Avenue bridge, Tommy Lee Jones giving me a wink and a shoulder squeeze (on horseback), a Rangers game in July with that one guy hitting the snare drum — this is the movie-style montage that ran through my head when I took a bite of the Smoke’s EB&D Loaded Up and Truckin' Burger. Its flavor profile: a cowboy hugging you firmly and saying, “It’s OK. Everything’s OK.”

On a weekday that's as bright and clear as a bell, I'm sitting at Smoke’s bar by myself, facing chalk art of a pig that is oddly pleased after being stuffed under the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge. The burger, probably named after a Jerry Reed song or a Clint Eastwood movie, towers over the table, a sandwich nearly as big as the cow that it came from.

The burger’s construction: bacon, thick as a book, drapes over the cheddar-topped burger, and a single frittered egg balances atop top bun. This is a $15 burger that turns heads. Matthew McConaughey should accompany this burger. He could sit down right next to you and ask, “How’s it taste?” as you take a bite. “Mmmmphary good!” you’d sputter in response.

The gently frittered egg is an eye opener on this massive burger.EXPAND
The gently frittered egg is an eye opener on this massive burger.
Nick Rallo

Slicing it down the center reveals a wild cross-section of chopped lettuce, long-cut bacon and pink grilled beef, the frittered egg like a Cyclops eye on this beefy giant. It’s packed with fantastically woody and smoky flavor from an open fire. The beef, if a touch over medium rare, tastes like Texas sunshine and a grill that’s hot enough to create a mirage.

Bacon is thick but has crispy edges, much like the farm egg. You’d do well to add a couple of Smoke’s iconic pickles, and even better to avoid any condiments. Keep the focus on the open fire and grill flavor. Sharp cheddar adds a bite, and the bun is decadently butter-grilled.

There’s no good reason not to try the burger at Smoke, especially if you live in Texas.

Smoke, 901 Fort Worth Ave. 

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Smoke

901 Fort Worth Ave.
Dallas, TX 75208

214-393-4141

www.smokerestaurant.com

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