That Dallas boasts some wonderful hamburgers and hamburger joints is no secret. Evidently, the best burger in Texas lives here on Greenville at The Grape, and there’s no shortage of home-grown places to find a unique, satisfying variation of the sandwich. But eating a burger in the dimly-lighted presence of shuffleboards, tube TVs and torn, tattered vinyl chairs has an allure all its own. And we can’t resist it. So we’re running a series on the Dallas Dive Burger, featuring two establishments at a time, analyzing select offerings and comparing them to (not against) each other. There are no winners here – unless you count the eater.
And as for how we define a dive? Well, it’s a mix of temperament and arbitrary selection. Rest assured, though, that we use the word in the most affectionate manner.
They’re in Addison, so smoking is still permitted in both establishments, which helps add to the dive aspect of both Addison Point and Stadium Cafe, though Addison Point does go through at least a token effort to spruce up their bar for the holiday season, while also providing more ample lighting and more open area. They’ve got a smaller selection of burgers than Stadium Cafe, though they do provide both a buffalo burger (below) and a turkey burger.
The 3/4-Pound Cheeseburger
Made with patties formed in-house and seasoned lightly with salt, the larger of Addison Point’s Cheeseburger (shown here with American Cheese; other options include Cheddar, Swiss, and Pepper Jack) is adorned with the traditional lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles and mustard on a standard toasted white bun, which has no problem holding the contents. The vegetables are fresh, the pickles are … pickles, and it is served with a small pepper. It won’t leave you hungry or upset with what you ordered, but there’s also nothing about this that will take you by surprise. If anything, the 3/4-pound cheeseburger at Addison Point will adequately prepare your stomach well for all the beer you’re about to drink while watching its many TVs – especially on a Saturday or Sunday during the football season.
And we’re not really covering sides, but if we were, we’d cover the curly fries, which are crispy and seasoned with authority .
The Buffalo Burger
Buffalo meat may not be as exotic to the American consciousness as it was 20 years ago, but keeping in mind we’re talking about a sports bar in a strip mall, the Buffalo Burger on Addison Point’s menu sufficiently intrigued us to the point of ordering it.
Considering the healthier aspects of buffalo – primarily the lower fat content – Addison Point adds a healthy dose of Swiss cheese to help combat the inherent dryness that buffalo meat presents. And they add two onion rings to the order, too, just to make sure no one’s getting out of there feeling too healthy.
And fried okra is on the menu. Scoreboard.
The Man Burger
Addison Point, having been around for more than 20 years, serves their burgers in an honest fashion, presenting no surprises and a good, consistent burger. Stadium Cafe, however, seems to shoot for the goal of filling their customers in a wonderful, grease-fueled hamburger spectacle. At least, that’s the case with the Man Burger.
Taking two 1/2-pound patties and covering each with cheddar, the Man Burger’s two onion rings between the patties and the vegetables (shredded lettuce, tomato, onions, and pickles) are its claim to fame. Why have onion rings on the side when they can be consumed along with the main dish all in one fell swoop? It’s hamburger efficiency at its best.
Served on a toasted bun (strong resemblance to Mrs. Baird’s, but that seems a Dallas Dive Burger theme) the patties at Stadium Cafe are salted more liberally than those at Addison Point, though much like their counterpart, the buns are toasted well and the meat is charred adequately.
The Create-Your Own Burger
With five cheeses to choose from and toppings that include guacamole, chili, bacon, and cajun spices, among others, the options at Stadium Cafe will have the micromanager pleased, to say the least. The jalapenos can be ordered fresh or pickled, and the 1/2-pound patty is sufficient for any average appetite. If you’re in a creative – or daring – mood, this is the way to go.
But beware, the fresh jalapenos are fresh indeed. We’re still soaking our tongues in cold water.
Thus concludes our burger breakdown. We like this feature, and where we think it can head, though suggestions on what you’re looking for are always appreciated – email us here if there’s a burger you’d like to see, or if there’s an approach to this feature you’d like to see us take!