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Saturday, January 2, 2010

Lunch Report: T.J.'s on New Laredo Highway...

I took a tip from the folks over at San Antonio's Burger Blog and decided we should check out a hole-in-the-wall sorta burger place on San Antonio's south side this afternoon, called T.J.'s. This is proof that sometimes, the timing and even the day of the week can make a big difference in how a place is perceived.
T.J.'s looks as though it was originally a drive-in sort of burger place. The covered parking along the front brings visions of young girls on roller skates bringing a tray of shakes and burgers. Or perhaps I just had Sonic on my mind. At any rate, you should be prepared before you make the trip yourself.
We pulled in and just as my wife was asking me about how much cash I had in my wallet, I looked up and saw the "Cash Only" sign. So on our quick return five minutes later, it was like we had caught a rush hour. The place was full. Now given that there are only about five tables in the inside dining area, it doesn't take much to be "full", but either way, we were eager to give them a try, and by the time we ordered, a table opened for us.
If you are looking for a fine dining experience with an atmosphere to impress a gal or maybe have some things hanging from the walls to look at while you wait, this isn't it. Yes, it is a dive, pure and simple, but it has been my experience that you can often find just what you want in a burger place like this.
My wife ordered just a single quarter pound burger with cheese and no onions, and a small order of fries. Just imagine how wonderful this would be sitting in the front seat of your brand new car. Greasy, gooey, moist, and shredded lettuce everywhere! That friends, is the sign of a good burger.
I was super hungry and pigged out on the triple meat. Just look at how unhealthy it looks? Kudos to the cooks for serving it up just like you would expect from a place that looks like this. My only issue really was with the burger patties themselves. I know you have to be careful these days and in fact, the only place you can get a burger that is not overcooked is if you do it yourself. But really, I thought all three of my patties were more done than necessary. The overall taste of the bun, condiments and grease helped, but I just felt like I had experienced so much better at several other places.
One look at the onion rings and I should have known better than to order them, but I did. I'm just not a fan of that real crispy style of frozen onion rings. And though I only ate one and my wife had a few, don't let that stop you from ordering them, if you like that style. The fries, which for some reason I didn't take a picture of looked, felt and tasted like McDonald's. They were fine.

Overall, I liked the idea of T.J.'s, but both my wife and I agreed that, had we not been in the area anyway, it would not have been worth the drive. The price was fair and the continuous stream of people through the doors is proof that they are doing something right. I may try them again sometime during the week at lunch, just to see if it comes out a little better.

Are you a fan of T.J.'s? Have you tried the shakes? Leave a comment below and share your experience.

1 comment:

Four Dinners said...

I was about to go to sleep as it's nearly 1 am over in't UK.

It is entirely your fault that I am now hungry.

I even dribbled on my keypad...

Good job I like yer...;-)

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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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