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.