Two burger restaurants along Greenville Avenue have had dramatically different business experiences recently, while a new restaurant from a local burger legend hints at a possible (though probably unlikely) top in the Dallas burger market.
A few weeks ago, Becks Prime announced that the Greenville Avenue location of the Houston-based burger chain was closed. Business had been strong at other Dallas locations, but the burgers weren't selling on Greenville, according to a spokesperson. This seemed odd because, at least until recently, burger restaurants have proven to be invincible in Dallas. A toddler with a patty press and a plastic spatula could run a successful burger business here.
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But the endless burger parade was dealt a second major blow when Pat Snuffer announced that his newest restaurant, Pat's & Mike, would not prominently feature burgers. Snuffer scoffed at typical "hamburger-laden menus seen on just about every corner," saying the last thing this town needs is another burger joint. The man who built a mini empire on burgers and cheese fries was turning to hand crafted pizzas and Tex-Mex menu items instead.
The move is significant, considering Snuffer's background with his eponymous restaurant and bar. While no longer associated with the restaurant, Snuffer turned his name into a recognized brand with multiple locations. The latest, a newly constructed restaurant built on the site of the original Snuffer's on Greenville Avenue, does brisk business. Night after night the patio spills over with burger fans while the smells of searing beef bathes the entire block. Wait too long in line to get into the neighboring Grenada Theater and you'll smell like you put in a shift at Dairy Queen for the rest of the evening. You might even give up on the show and pound a few Bud Lights and some cheddar fries, instead.
Pat's & Mike is expected to open this fall in the Preston Frankford Center and will feature "a comfortable, casual bar" and tight menu. They'll keep the kitchen open late-night, too. And who knows, if the plan works other budding restaurateurs might follow suit. If that happens we just might see a few less burger restaurants taking shape on the horizon.
Probably not, though.