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san diego burger week roundup
March 14th, 2014Cheap Eats, Mary, San Diego CountyMary Desjean 18 Comments

I read about San Diego CityBeat’s San Diego Burger Week on Janice’s blog, Food is My Favorite. I had never heard of burger week before! A bunch of restaurants around San Diego are offering up burgers for a mere $5. Every burger is a little bit different, with different toppings and various takes and there are even a few veggie burgers thrown in for the non-meat eating folks. Here’s my recap of the few places I tried during week – which is running now through Sunday, March, 16th.

Burger are written about in the order that I ate them.

The Smokey Pig at Terra American Bistro
7091 El Cajon Blvd. | San Diego, CA 92115

beer-at-terra-san-diego

I ended up ordering the #2 burger special that came with truffle fries and a pint of Manzanita Riverwalk Blonde draft beer for $13. This is my beer. It’s glowing. I was drinking this just after 5PM on a Friday. Yessssss.

smokey-pig-at-terra-san-diego-burger-week

The Smokey Pig is a 1/2 lb burger with smoked onion marmalade, bacon aioli, chipotle sauce, lettuce, and tomato on a very nice brioche bun. Avocado, egg, or bacon can be added for an additional $1. Avocado sounded like a mighty fine idea to me.

smokey-pig-burger-cross-section

This burger was so incredibly juicy and chock full of flavor. I hear from someone somewhere their secret ingredient is butter… I’m glad I didn’t know that at the time, sheesh. The tomato was very bright and crisp and there was a small amount of leafy lettuce on here. I got it medium rare and it was still nice and pink inside. The mixture from the bacon aioli and onion marmalade created this delicious richness that was just out of this world.

If I had to go back for any burger I had during burger week it would, without a doubt, be this one. It’s the only burger I almost ate all of (I ate about 3/4 of it).

bucket-truffle-fries-terra

My extra combo came with a little bucket of truffle fries. We didn’t know they would be little buckets and we also didn’t know it was an additional $4 per bucket, so Jake and T also got little buckets so this meal didn’t end up as cheap as I had hoped. Our fault though, we should have asked. The truffle fries were pretty good, but not super outstanding or super memorable, but decent.

50/50 Burger at Point Loma Beach Cafe
1424 Sunset Cliffs Blvd. | San Diego, CA 92107

point-loma-beach-cafe

Nah… we didn’t go to Slater’s for a 50/50 burger like Faye did. And the 50/50 burger here is a little bit different!

chorizo-beef-burger-point-loma-beach-cafe-san-diego-burger-week

No, the 50/50 Burger here is 50% ground beef and 50% chorizo and topped with cheddar cheese, lettuce, grilled onion, tomato, mayo & mustard. The beef does really tone down the flavor of the chorizo so it’s not really spicy or IN YOUR FACE chorizo. It’s more like the seasonings and flavor of the chorizo are present and infused with the beef.

chorizo-beef-burger-cross-section

The beef-chorizo combo make for a very messy, very drippy-get-all-over-the-place burger and I carefully ate it over the basket so I wouldn’t get beefy chorizo dripping all over my shirt (I didn’t have my bib because it was dirty). I liked this burger a lot, I liked the flavor the chorizo imparted but that it wasn’t too bold.

Jake had different feelings about this burger than I did. He didn’t like that you couldn’t taste the chorizo as much and my ketchup-loving-boyfriend did not like the mustard that was on this. I, the non-ketchup lover who prefers mustard, enjoyed it. While I did enjoy it, I still only ate half. It was pretty hefty and very filling.

waffle-fries-basket-pt-loma-beach-cafe

We also shared a basket of waffle fries for $1.99. They were nothing special but a nice little extra crunch for our meal.

The Texas Burger at Crazee Burger
4201 30th St. | San Diego, CA 92104

texas-burger-at-crazee-burger-san-diego-burger-week

Jake and I were getting ready to grab some groceries to make dinner when his mom texted us and invited us to meet her and T for dinner at Crazee Burger. More $5 burgers?! Geez, twist my arm. The burger at Crazee Burger is a nice seared patty with plenty of sweet hickory bbq sauce and bacon!

texas-burger-cross-section

The burgers were cooked a nice medium rare (woo, pink!). The hickory BBQ sauce here was the real winner of this meaty monster. They did NOT skimp on the BBQ sauce at all – it’s nearly smothered in it and really delicious. It’s smokey and sweet – not tangy at all – which is really how I personally like my BBQ sauce to be. The tomato on here was really weak flavored and barely tasted like a tomato and there was a thin bit of lettuce. Pickles don’t touch my burger and I gave those evil little things away to Jake.

onion-rings-crazee-burger

We also had a little bowl of onion rings to share. Pretty good, yet standard.

bowl-of-fries-crazee-burger

The fries are just shoestring with a little bit of seasoning on them that tasted a little sweet-ish. I didn’t care for the fries all that much.

The Smokehouse Burger at The High Dive
1801 Morena Blvd. | San Diego, CA 92110

high-dive-beer-taps-ceiling

Our last stop (so far) for Burger Week was a place way out on Morena called the High Dive. This place had a really eclectic mix of decorations in their restaurant! There were beer taps hanging from the ceiling, a TV in the back with lunchboxes surrounding it, a few pin ball machines, and lots of other pictures/signs/knick knacks. Very dive-y. Very cool.

This is the first place I had wanted to go but we ended up at Terra first since it was closer to Jake’s house AND I wasn’t sure if kids were allowed. But they have a kid’s menu so I guess kids are allowed in here. This was one of the only listings for Burger Week that  clearly marked it had fries included for the $5 price tag.

smokehouse-burger-the-high-dive-san-diego-burger-week

Whoa.

smokeburger-burger-no-hat

Actually, the burger was delivered this like, but I thought it looked way more dramatic to put it together for the shot! The Smokehouse Burger came with smoked pulled pork, onion rings, and a spicy BBQ sauce. After my dramatic photo, I ate one of the onion rings and then did my very best to smoosh it together enough so that it would actually fit into my mouth.

smokeburger-burger-cross-section

Smooooosh!

Despite the piled high swoon worthy look… this burger was kind of lacking. It was a little overcooked (closer to medium-well) and the pulled pork, while tasty on it’s own, got lost in the mix of the thick burger, onion rings and other toppings. I could not really even taste it on my burger and there was a serious lack of sauce here. The bun was extra toasty and without any sauce to help out, this was the driest burger we had. Sad face.

house-fries-high-dive

On the upside though, the house cut fries were SO FREAKING GOOD. I mean… like really, really, really good. Freshly made on site with the skin still on, these were a slightly thick cut, very crispy and golden and almost creamy on the inside. I gushed a little about the fries to one of our servers who proudly told us that one of the things they do is they toss the potatoes in cornstarch. Say what?! A quick Google search in fact showed me this one was one of the secrets that America’s Test Kitchen reveals for making perfect french fries. Hot damn. Well, truly it works because these fries were so good that I’d come back here, despite the not-so-good burger.

There you have it – my roundup for San Diego Burger Week! You’ve got til Sunday to get your burger on so I hope this helps you to decide where to go and park it for five bucks.

Other Burger Week posts:Kirbie went to Carnitas Snack Shack and Jinxi did as well. Lynn went to Henry’s Pub. And as stated above, Faye checked out Slater’s 50/50.

'18 Responses to “san diego burger week roundup”'
  1. Faye says:

    You burger freak! I wanted so badly to do a burger like each day this week. I’m so jealous of you :(

    I about spit out my coffee when I saw the last burger! Like OMG Holy shmokes

    • Faye says:

      Alright, that was a first. I meant to click on the Skype button to finish convo w/ sis when I hit the ‘submit’ button here instead.

      I’ve never seen a burger stacked that high and was curious how they got it to table without it tipping over. Made more sense that you put it together – I loves! Too bad the burger wasn’t good though.

      I went to Crazee years ago and found their burgers to be ‘meh’. Not sure what all the hype was all about but I think their popularity has died down? Was it busy when you were there? It was pretty empty the last time I visited them.

      Are you going to try out any more burgers before Sunday?!

      • mary says:

        Hi Faye! Burger freak! Ahhh! That’s what I thought people would think, not that I really care. I only ate like half of all of those burgers. I hope no one thinks I really ate THAT much, haha. Yeah, the last burger is pretty dramatic looking but it wasn’t that awesome tasting. Boo. When we went to Crazee is was pretty packed (it was last Saturday evening) so they were pretty busy. I don’t know if we’ll try anymore… I’m kind of burger’d out! But maybe… the sausage burger at Salt & Cleaver might be non-burger enough for me to want to go.

  2. Jenn says:

    Oh man i love this post!!

  3. Jenn says:

    Thanks for sharing! I have the carnitas snack shake burger on my list. Gotta get on that!

    • mary says:

      Thanks, Jenn! I saw a couple of posts from Kirbie and Jinxi about the Carnitas Snack Shack burger – it looks really good, especially for $5! :)

  4. leanne says:

    I am truly in awe of your burger-hopping prowess. And now I really want a burger.

  5. Jinxi says:

    Wow, great job! I can’t believe you hit so many places – after two days in a row of burgers, I was DONE. Haha. (Although I *might* just go for one more over the weekend. Might.) Terra American Bistro has never been on my radar, but it sounds super yummy :D

  6. Kirbie says:

    Nice round-up! There’s so many places I wanted to try. Now I only have the weekend left to hit a few more.

  7. Darlene says:

    I just went to Terra today but I found our burger a little over cooked. Good to know about the butter — it was satisfyingly juicy. Too bad about High Dive, looks great but taste didn’t reflect it.

    • mary says:

      Hi Darlene – yeah, I was disappointed with the High Dive burger. Looks only get you so far! Bummer your Terra burger was a little overdone, it was my favorite of the bunch!

  8. Janice D. says:

    Awesome round up, Mary! There are so many places I still want to try… OMG especially that chorizo burger! A couple more days so we may go on Sunday! Bunz Burger Joint was pretty good — Terra’s sister restaurant! :-) Great post!

    • mary says:

      Hi Janice! Thank you! Our waiter told us Bunz was their sister restaurant. We went there once awhile ago and had terrible service so aren’t inclined to go again. Oh well. Maybe next burger week we’ll have gotten over it :) Hope you make the most of the weekend!

  9. Holy $#%@! You are an awesome trooper! Great roundup of burger week! I liked seeing all of the different burgers you tried. I’ve never seen the 50/50 place at Point Loma Beach Cafe. Must try that in the future or at least next year for Burger Week. Hmmm, sensory overload at High Dive! I still haven’t tried Terra at their “new” (not really new anymore, I know) location yet. Have heard good things about Terra.

    • mary says:

      Hi CC – We tried to do a nice variety for burger week so we wouldn’t get too burnt out! It’s nice that there’s enough restaurants and variety that you can try different items for the whole week. I also like that burger week included two weekends! I’ve been to Terra twice now, good stuff both times.

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