Smashburger introduces really good burgers to New Jersey

I walked out of the Smashburger media lunch on Wednesday wanting another burger.  And I normally eat salads or a turkey sandwich for lunch.

Chances are you don't know what Smashburger is, but New Jersey will soon know the name well. Literally, a Smashburger is a hand-formed and fresh 100% Angus beef burger patty that is smashed and seared on a buttered grill.  The Smashburger franchise is a Denver based company that has set up shop in Montclair for its New Jersey debut.  And ooo they have some yummy burgers (and sides and milkshakes).

For the special burger event, I brought along my NJMyWay food expert Warren Bobrow to get his colorful report on how he enjoyed his lunch. I think we both had the same "smashingly" good time (look for his review next week at NJMyWay)! Even Maddy enjoyed her kid burger and the blueberry milkshake sample (even though a lot of it ran down her shirt).

Each Smashburger franchise includes creative burger choices like Spicy Baja and BBQ, Bacon and Cheese and then they regionalize things with a state specific design.  Since I really couldn't decide what to get, I opted for the Classic Smashburger complete with American cheese, ketchup (though I don't think mine had any..which was fine!), red onion, lettuce and pickle on a warm egg bun. On the side was the secret smash sauce which had a mayo/honey mustard taste to it.  Since this was a special occasion lunch (and since my almost 3 month pregnant belly was craving something fried), I had to get a side dish-another menu category which sets Smashburger apart from other burger joints.  Their famous Smash Fries are tossed with garlic, olive oil and rosemary. But as I scrolled the selections I spotted something that I had seen on an episode of Food Paradise on the Food Network: FRIED PICKLES! I had to give them a try..just because.  And to drink? How can you pass up a bottle of Stewart's Root Beer. I mean come on! And in a frosted mug no less!

In just a few minutes, my meal was delivered to the table by a friendly staffer. And Maddy was already digging into her burger and some of Warren's Haystack Onions.  From the first bite to the final lick of my sauce tipped finger, I thoroughly enjoyed my Smashburger.  The toppings were fresh, the bun warm and the burger tasted like it came right off the grill. Now, don't expect a thick and juicy burger. The patties are smashed so they're thin, but not lacking in flavor.  And then to the pickles: frying a cold crispy snack definitely doesn't affect the structure or taste at all.  I wasn't wowed by the combination, but I understand that the snack is a southern delicacy and so I'm glad I gave it a try!

So what if burgers just aren't in your plan for the week, but you're coming to Smashburger with a group? There are chicken sandwiches and salads available.

Beyond the food at Smashburger was the extra friendly staff, swift prep and service and colorful almost pop-art style decor.  If the MOMA had a burger cafe, it would be Smashburger.

Now don't expect fast-food prices for your 1/3 or 1/2lb burgers. Prices range from $4.99 to $6.99, sides start at $1.49, kids meal are $3.99, but you can get a beer or glass of wine for under $4.00!

For now Smashburger is only located in Montclair, but they have plans to expand in the state.  And even though I'm in Princeton, I'd totally go again if I were in the area. Because hey, when you're pregnant you're allowed to indulge right?

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