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Saturday, August 15, 2009

Lunch Report: Chunky's Burgers...

The week or so ago my son called to report that San Antonio was being featured on the Travel Channel show, Man V. Food. I flipped on the TV and saw the segment on Big Lou's Pizza. Honestly, I had never even heard of the place. Another segment was Lulu's Bakery which we have discussed here several times; I love me some Lulu's.Then, earlier this week, a friend asked if I had seen the Man V. Food segment on Chunky's Burgers located on Callaghan. I hadn't, and in fact, I know I have driven by that location numerous times and couldn't recall seeing the place. So, my wife and I were in need of lunch, and off we went.There was some minor glitch when we arrived around 11:30 and a lady came out and told me they would not be opening until noon. We ran errands and when we returned, could see that the featured burger on Man V. Food, the 4-Horsemen Burger, was not available. I asked about it when we got in and she told me that the owner was running around town looking for the right ingredients. I'm guessing since that show, maybe lots of folks had come in looking to take the challenge.

By the way, go to the Vlog entry for San Antonio where you can listen to the host Adam Richman describe the 4-Horsemen as being the hottest thing ever. He was actually ready to give up after the first bite. The 4-Horsemen is topped with grilled jalapenos, Serrano peppers, ghost peppers, jalapeno jack cheese and habanero sauce. I love hot/spicy food and I'll enjoy jalapenos all day long - especially on a burger, but at some point it becomes ridiculous. Even if the 4-Horsemen had been available, I'd have passed on it.
Inside, the place is small, though maybe slightly larger than The Gold Standard, Lord's Kitchen. When we walked in at precisely noon, the place was already packed and we took a table in front of the register, next to the entrance. Needless to say, the crowd that followed us in huddled around our table as we waited the twenty or so minutes for our order.Outside they have a very large covered dining area that was also filled by the time we had finished. The place is doing a booming business with a strong line-up of burgers, sandwiches and chicken plates. We started off our lunch with the obligatory basket of half fries, half onion rings. The fries were thick and not overcooked. The onion rings are frozen from a supplier, but they were actually cooked as good as one can given what they got; not too crisp for my taste. If you like that style, you won't be disappointed. And no, we didn't even come close to finishing the order.We only had a second to glance at the menu because it was too small to read and people were beginning to crowd in behind us, (they could really use a web page, if only to give people a chance to review the menu before they arrive). My wife ordered The Guacamole Burger, and was very pleased to find that what it really is is avocado slices smashed. Honestly, they could have forgotten the burger and she would have been in hog heaven.I ordered something called the Big Chunk. Topped with Velveeta, onion rings and bacon, it was just what I needed to make up for having missed breakfast. Chunky's does their buns the correct way, toasted on the grill and still soft. The burgers themselves seemed to be cooked "Well Done" though I understand why many restaurants do that, I don't have to be happy about it. Because mine was served without the benefit of mayo or mustard, I added a little barbecue sauce our server brought us. By the time I was about mid-way into the burger, I was able to really appreciate the combination of the onion ring and bacon, smothered in Velveeta and now barbecue sauce.I will have to go back just because I need to try a few of the other selections on Chunky's menu. In spite of hitting it at a really busy time, I liked that I could see the grillmen in the back working like a smooth team. Most importantly, my wife was just pleased as punch with the Guacamole Burger and that makes Chunky's a Tasty Treat.


deep forest said...

Went over there last week, they told me I had to wait an hour for my hamburger. Said "I don't think so" and left and I'm not going back.

KeithAlanK said...

Not to ignore Chunky's, but Big Lou's is worth the drive way across town.
The mozzarella is fresh and wonderful, great pizza and everything else we've tried.

Dave said...

Went over there last week, they told me I had to wait an hour for my hamburger. Said "I don't think so" and left and I'm not going back.

An hour wait? That gives new meaning to "well done".

I'd let all the hoopla over the Man V. Food thing blow over and give it a shot later.

It is sort of like Cheddar's and the crowds that make the wait 45 minutes to get a seat. It's good, but there are just too many other places for me to eat at.

Big Lou's is worth the drive way across town.

Yes - several people told us the same thing. Needless to say, Big Lou's is on our list - just not the 47 inch pizza.

Albatross said...

A 47-inch pizza. That's bigger than my six-year-old kid.

adam said...

Big Lou's is great. Havent had it in a few years, but had it many times growing up on the South Side. Well worth the drive!

deep forest said...

The place wasn't even half full. Ain't no way to run a business. I'm still not going back.

Dave said...

The place wasn't even half full. Ain't no way to run a business.

No arguing that. When all else fails, Lord's Kitchen on Seguin Street!

brenty said...

I visited Chucky's a couple of years ago and it was just ok. I was surprised they were featured on that show. Maybe I should go there again? After Mr.Cod, I'm leery ;)

Dave said...

I visited Chucky's a couple of years ago and it was just ok.

Chunky's got the coveted TT from me because of the buns and the fact that my wife loved her Guac Burger. Make no mistake, the only reason the Man V Food guy went there, was because of the 4-Horseman Burger. It doesn't say anything about the quality of the burger per se, just that it was a food challenge.

We'll go again, but just like Mr. Cod, if it doesn't cut the mustard, I have no problems telling you about it!

deep forest said...

All hail The Lord's Kitchen...Mecca for the hamburger affcianado....

brenty said...

First the onion ring and now the the "hamburger afficianado" I must try this place.

Erica said...

by Erica Aguirre on Sunday, April 3, 2011 at 3:25pm

I had the worst service I have EVER had in my whole entire life at Chunky's burgers last night! My sis had her bday dinner there, had over 40 diners for her party. After 2 hours and after asking repeatedly about my order, after everyone else had eaten, I was informed I still had two orders ahead of me! I told the manager I didn't feel like I should have to pay for my food because I ordered when my party did and was still waiting to which her flustered, unapologetic response was that she had to look at her cameras because "well that's what everyone seems to be saying", "I have more important things to do", "then I guess your not getting your order!" she ended it with have a good night as I was still speaking and walked off! I have NEVER! Then when my order did come out my sister witnessed her tell the waitress she didn't give a FU** what she did with my order but she wanted me out of her restaurant! OMG I lost it! I have never experienced that level of unprofessional, combative, defensive, unapologetic service in my life! Do not go there! The food is over priced, the burgers were bland and dry! I had a bite of my sons :-( I was so hungry! It sucked! They suck! Ruined my sisters party!

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San Antonio, TX, United States
I love to observe the odd things happening around me as I go about my day. I especially like it when I can get a picture of people being themselves. Here, I attempt to report the various people and events I have encountered in my neighborhood, and my city. I'd also love to hear from you. Feel free to e-mail your experiences and photos of life in San Antonio.

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