Not So Super Burger Bros.

The Crew is done turkey'd out. After our experiences with the turkey BOTMs earlier this month and the onslaught of the poultry during Thanksgiving (And the day after. And the day after that...etc.), we needed a hefty dose of red meat to keep us sane. We were still toting a soon-to-expire Groupon, leftover from Groupon's burger week celebration back in May, so we trekked up 95 to cash in on the deal at Burger Bros. in Towson to satiate our beefy fix.

Burger Bros before Burger Hos?

We don't venture into Maryland as much as we'd like --the plethora of burgers in D.C. and Virginia keep us plenty busy– so we were happy to make the trip. Besides, these small, independent, locally-owned spots, like Burger Bros., are the kind we love to visit the most. And reading the reviews on Yelp and seeing their "Best Burger" accolade from Baltimore magazine, it left us plenty optimistic about the jaunt. The small restaurant is located in a quiet (at least on our visit) row of shops along Allegheny Avenue in downtown Towson, nestled between a bagel joint and pizza parlor. It's a stark contrast from the hustle and bustle around the perpetually busy burger joints we frequent in D.C. The space itself  is quite small, with a handful of tables inside and another bunch out front on the sidewalk. The menu is simple and straightforward– burgers, chicken, hot dogs, wings, salads and fries. Focused solely on the burgs, we sized up the options and went with the classic combo of beef, cheese and pig: the bacon cheeseburger. We went cheddar all the way around, though other cheese options include Swiss, American, pepperjack, blue cheese and feta. Based on the Yelp reviews, we were expecting a burger more along the lines of the fast-food style you'd get from Five Guys, Z-Burger and other comparable joints. Instead, they resembled gourmet-style burgs, and were, dare we say, pretty.

That there is an attractive burger.

Preconceived notions aside, the burgers looked good and we so wanted to love them, but sadly, they missed on a few key fronts.

The first problem was not being given the option of getting the burgers cooked to order. Even though we knew to expect well-done patties (and, to be fair, they were cooked decently enough on the charbroil grill), being fans of rare/medium rare , it was still disappointing.  And it's not like these were thin patties either; the burgers were chunky, six-ounce hunks of beef. But, alas, not a spot of pink was to be found.

We want blood.

While there was a noticeable crust on the burgers from the grill, the usual accompanying char flavor was weak. The meat needed more seasoning too; a pinch or two more salt and pepper would have helped a lot. Despite its flaws, Burger Bros. wasn't bad by any means. It's a perfectly passable and solid burger. The toppings were on point with crispy bacon, thoroughly-melted cheese and tasty caramelized onions. And the buns also got high marks from the Crew as the toasted, brioche-style bread was light, fluffy and provided good stability throughout the meal. The whole thing was just missing that something that makes a good burger stand out from the rest. It reminded us a lot of Foster's Grill: a straight-from-the-backyard-grill burger; but in this case, someone turned down the volume on flavor. Along with the burgers, we got a taste of both their onion rings and fries. The rings were decent enough, but we suggest giving them a pass and opting just for the fries. The skin-on, fresh-cut, boardwalk-style spuds were sufficiently salted and greasy. They were really good and the available malted vinegar on the side made them that much better. Another plus for Burger Bros. are the prices. The six-ounce bacon cheeseburger is just $5.99 and you can load it up with an sizable selection of free toppings including caramelized onions, jalapenos and sauerkraut. On the side, a generously-sized small order of fries is a bargain at less than two bucks. To date, we've only eaten at a handful of Baltimore-area joints, but even in our small sample size we can't crown Burger Bros. the king of our Charm City burger experience. We do give them the nod over Mother's Federal Hill Grill, but we've had better burgers at Kooper's Tavern. (And we're still itchin' to hit up the much-lauded Hamilton Tavern.) Burger Bros. | 14 Allegheny Avenue | Towson |     

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