Decemburger: The Jackalope

 
First came 50 Burgers, 50 Days. Then Novemburger. 2011 wraps up with a burger a day for Decemburger.
 
Day 21: The Jackalope
404 E. Sixth St. 469-5801, www.jackalopebar.com.
Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily.
 
 
By Mike Sutter | Fed Man Walking | 12.21.11
 
 
In the middle of after-midnight research for a story on walk-up street food for the Statesman in 2009, I ran into Jackalope owner Jason Burton. I asked him about all the street carts crowded into the district. I liked his philosophy, that having more places to eat would help shift Sixth Street’s identity from just a nightclub district to a restaurant destination, too. And that would help everybody’s business.
 
Of course, Burton has an if-you-can’t-beat-‘em philosophy. He started a street cart of his own to supplement his side-by-side Jackalope, Jack Pizza and Chupacabra operations. I tried Chupacabra for a Sixth Sreet burger story in March, mostly for the cabrito burger. I didn’t want to revisit that unremarkable experience for this series, so I’m reserving Wednesday for the Jackalope, in part because Wednesday is two-for-one burger night, starting at 5 p.m.
 
The burger: Faced with 13 possibilities, from a Frito pie burger to another with pulled pork and pineapple pico, I ordered the first burger with a “house specialty” symbol next to it, a Chipotle Bacon Cheeseburger.  The meat is a hulking, irregular knot of beef with a grill-marked sear resting on a grainy white bun with an aroma like it came from the oven today. With five pieces of extra-salty bacon, the package is glued together with thick, melted pimiento cheese that carries the signature smoky heat of chipotle. You could call it an overfed bouncer of a burger, but it fits with the Jackalope’s red-and-black man-cave decor, complete with barrel-chested cartoon babes on every wall. It’s a solid deal at $6.99 for the not-so-subtle “huge” size.
 
Fries or rings? A basket of crosscut waffle fries is $1.99 with a burger. They’re the throttled red color of seasoned salt, a balance of crispy and starchy with the peels left on in random patches. Rather than pay $4.95 for onion rings, I took advantage of the pizza oven just a few steps away at Jack Pizza for a big, crackly slice of sausage and pepper for $4. The crust gets its character from beer. You can develop some beer-borne character of your own with $2.50 pints during happy hour every day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., including Stella Artois, Brooklyn Lager, Ace Pear Cider and the squirrelly briarpatch called Magic Hat #9.
 
(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)
 
 
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