Hello, HBurgerCo

Hip new burger place and lounge in LoDo

HBurgerCo, a swank and contemporary new burgeria opened this past Saturday at the edge of LoDo, reportedly drawing hefty crowds from the middle of the day to the middle of the night. I couldn’t make that, but a friend and I did get there on Sunday in mid-afternoon — and even at that unconventional time of day for eating, well over half of the tables were occupied sometime during our visit.

Despite its Blake Street address, HBurgerCo’s entrance is on the 16th Street Mall. The bar/lounge area is immediately inside, with the spacious dining room to the right. There are round booths, conventional rectangular booths and tables in a dining room whose color palette leans toward gray, black and red, great lighting and some ’50s-inspired wall coverings. It’s a combination of contemporary and retro, and perhaps the most retro touch of all are the napkins — actually cloth dish rags. (OK,” rags” is not a hip word, and I suspect the household linens industry has come up with a different one.)

The menu features burgers, salads, sandwiches, herb-roasted chicken sides, a children’s menu and an impressive selection of beverages with and without booze. The Angus beef burgers (and other sandwiches) come on big sesame studded buns and are offered with four-step build-your-own options: pick your protein, pick your cheese of choice, pick your other toppings and pick one of Chef Ian’s house-made sauces. That would be Ian Kleinman, a local wizard wrote the menu and created many of the dishes and even condiments. He also created the restaurant’s liquid nitrogen milkshakes (below) that are delivered to the table with “smoke” rising from the glass. My modest camera couldn’t catch the effect, but I saw it. I had room either for one of the shakes or something to eat — not both. The picture doesn’t do justice to the shake, though the burgers are more photogenic.

The Eden Burger, the restaurant’s veggie burger, is an enormous, moist patty whose ingredients I really can’t puzzle out. Sprouts, greens and red/pepper jam topped the burger, which was so delicate that it actually decomposed when I tried to pick it up for a bite. When Pete Pflum, managing partner who was handling the front of the house on Sunday, came by to ask how everything was, I told him about the “delicate” burger. He offered to get me another, but the portion was so large that I was actually grateful to be able to eat it with a fork and avoid most of the bun. A small bag of fries and a ramekin of herb sauce for dipping accompanied the burger.
Variations on the theme of cheeseburger abound. HBurgerCo actually offers a choice of how well the beef is cooked, ranging from “Rare. It’s cooked. Not that you’ll be able to tell” to “Well Done. It may look like a hockey puck on a bun, but it’s the best dang hockey puck you’ll ever consume.”
Zucchini fries are thick as steak fries in, well, a steakhouse. Nicely breaded and well fried, they came out hot, crisp and with the illusion of nutrition. Good texture and taste were not an illusion.
Price check: The Burgers, $5.95-$11.95; The Greens (salads), $10.95-$11.95; Other Stuff on Bread (sandwiches), $7.95-$12.95; Sides Matter (sides), $4-$8.50.

H Burger on Urbanspoon

7 thoughts on “Hello, HBurgerCo”

  1. No, not Ral. I ate at Smashburger with a friend. She and I went after the Colo Garden & Home Show, which didn't interest Ral at all.

  2. I was the lucky cheeseburger-eater. It was great! Could have used a few more fries, however. But overall a really good meal.

  3. Dave – In addition to the Eden Burger (veggie), I was considering the Mace Burger (turkey), the Ahi Tuna Burger, various salads or several mammal-free sandwiches. Or….I could just have filled myself up with liquid nitrogen milkshake and called it good.

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