100 Austin Burgers: Lebowski’s Grill
8909 Burnet Road at Highland Lanes, Austin (map), 512-419-7166, www.highlandlanes.com/Lebowskis-Grill
Grill hours: 11am-10pm Mon-Fri; 9:30am-11pm Sat; 9:30am-10pm Sun
By Mike Sutter | © Fed Man Walking | 02.17.16
Irony abides at Highland Lanes, where bowling can be an exercise in self-conscious Americana or just a way to blow off steam, drink some beer and celebrate the firecracker victory of a strike. Highland feeds both tribes at Lebowski’s Grill, an open-faced snack bar that honors the 10-pin slacker panegyric “The Big Lebowski” with burgers like the Dude (straight mustard-mayo American classic), the Walter (the Dude, supersized) and a cast of extras that includes sriracha, poblanos, mushrooms and bacon.
► Bacon cheeseburger: Irony has no place on a cheeseburger. And so Lebowski’s Grill plays it straight, with a third-pound Angus patty grilled hard and crisp with American cheese and thick-cut bacon that doesn’t taste like it’s been sitting on the side of the grill all day. It’s finished with mustard and mayo and food service-grade lettuce, tomato, onions and pickles on a soft, butter-toasted bun with a fine golden glazed crown and recessive sweetness. It’s a bowling alley burger with an ethos bigger than a bowling alley. But that’s just, like, my opinion, man. ($8.75 with fries or tots)
► On the side: Knobby tater tots and thick seasoned french fries each come frozen from a bag, but they’re fried to order, served hot and crunchy.
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(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)