Smash Burger (Mission Valley)
There are a lot of burger joints across San Diego but not that many great ones. There’s obviously the chain burger places, but not as many solid sit down, restaurant style places. The search goes on for the best burger places in San Diego. A new place popped up this year in Mission Valley and everyone knows Mission Valley lacks that food pop downtown or Hillcrest has. To my delight, Smash Burger entered the Mission Valley space and I was delighted to have the chance of adding another place to “the list.”
The concept is pretty simple. You get in line, order your food, and sit down. They bring the food to you. They had regular burgers and they had chicken burgers. A weird thing I’ve encountered on my foodie quest in regards to burgers is more times than not a great burger joint has pretty consistent and tasty chicken burgers. I don’t know why, but that’s just been my experience. Burger Lounge, Paradise Pup, Hodad’s, etc. With that, the chicken burger at Smash Burger was about a 6 out of 10. It lacked some sort of punch to it you are hoping to get with each bite, especially the first one. The supplement the burger with some sort of sauce. I got buffalo and ranch since I’m that kind of guy. The sauces, abundant as they were could not compensate for that star quality I look for in a burger of chicken, beef, pork, vegetable, ostrich or other meat. It’s that juiciness, that temperature, the cook time, the texture, the flavor, and the look and feel that make it a great experience. Smash Burger had potential, but just didn’t make the cut. It had a decent look, but it wasn’t as juicy or flavorful as I had hoped it would be. The facade and environment in the restaurant also seemed a little gimmicky. Ultimately it was not to be and I was not a believer.
Often a fail safe for me is the fries. I even upgraded to the Smash Fries which has olive oil, rosemary, and garlic. I’m a fat fry kind of guy. These were skinny fries. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy skinny fries. Ahem McDonald’s > Burger King. But there’s something about the fat fries that do it for me. I like the soft potato I get from baked potatoes and maybe that’s it. But the ratio for me of the crunch on the exterior, the potato, and ketchup I’ve gotten down to a science in fat fries and with skinny fries there is more room for error. The best skinny fries for me personally still retain the soft potato and the perfect crunch. But oftentimes they are left too long in the fryer and I get a heavy, oily taste in my mouth. No gracias.
Would I go back? Yes. Maybe in 3 years at a different location. There’s just too many other places to try not only in San Diego, but everywhere else!
7610 Hazard Center Dr.San Diego, CA 92108