I Can Eat 50 Eggs: P. Terry's Burger Stand

 
In honor of Paul Newman and “Cool Hand Luke,” I’ll review 50 days of eggs from 50 different restaurants.
 
Day 44: P. Terry’s Burger Stand
3303 N. Lamar Blvd. 371-9975, www.pterrys.com.
Hours: 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday-Thursday. 7 a.m. to midnight Friday. 8 a.m. to midnight Saturday. 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday. Breakfast until 11 a.m. daily.
 
By Mike Sutter | Fed Man Walking | 02.13.12
 
When I wrote about breakfast at P. Terry’s a year ago, I saved a few hard words for the sausage: “It had the limp, oily character you might find at a motel buffet rather than the kind of place that cares where it meat comes from, like P. Terry’s does.”
 
It was a lesson in be-careful-what-you-wish-for, because after that came out, Patrick Terry changed his sausage supplier. It’s better now, leaner, with a more balanced spice profile. For 75 cents, it’s a solid addition to P. Terry’s $1.50 value-priced egg burger, with an egg folded omelette-style topped with the chain’s better class of American cheese. I like P. Terry’s wheat buns more than the white, a 20-cent upgrade. That breakfast burger’s a full tier better than its greasy fast-food competitors, keeping with P. Terry’s strength overall: better-than-fast-food at fast-food prices.
 
The next-level philosophy works for the breakfast burger; it works for the potatoes, cut by hand to the size of homefries and fried to a careful crispness outside and a hot potato fluff inside for $1.25. The chain also squeezes its own orange juice. A 12-ounce cup is $1.75.
 
The best example of P. Terry’s step-up is coffee. You can get a cup of deliriously dark, bitter, deep-roasted Ruta Maya for $1.25. When he called last month with news that his West Lake Hills store would open in April, Terry said he’d stopped asking his Ruta Maya roaster to grind the coffee beans for him, and now his commissary grinds its own Ruta Maya beans for morning delivery to the stores. It’s the best fast-food coffee in Austin, if not anywhere that grab-and-go places torture the noble bean.
 
(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)
 
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