All hail the mighty burger. First deified in 2001 by DB Bistro Moderne in New York, its canonization continues at Twisted Root Burger Co., in the old Crescent City Cafe space in Deep Ellum. It’s a burger joint helmed by chefs Jason Boso (Four Seasons Resort) and Quincy Hart (Pappas Bros.). Fast-food places churn out millions per day, so this should be a no-brainer, right? But it’s not as easy as it looks.
Like Who’s Who in HP Village, Twisted Root uses gourmet meats: Angus beef, turkey, buffalo. They grind it themselves, with minimal seasoning, for a rather understated flavor. But when you go out for a burger, don’t you want that über-beefy taste, no matter how much salt or liquid smoke it takes?
Fixings lacked the fine provenance you’d expect from a gourmet place. Buns were brought in; lettuce and tomato were ordinary. But condiments were house-made, including ancho-chipotle ketchup and horseradish mustard. Chefs do love their sauces.
And nice job on the vegetarian burger, made from a spicy purée of black beans and a tiny bit of tofu, with random whole beans adding texture and offering a rustic reminder of its ingredients. Extra points for the whole-wheat bun.
“Root” refers to the sides: skin-on French fries and sweet potato chips dusted with cinnamon, cayenne, and sugar—an odd pairing with a burger. Onion rings were a huge disappointment, with a uniform shape and muddled taste, tip-offs that they were a frozen pre-made product brought in. Supposedly, the kitchen was unable to perfect a good batter recipe, but holy mother of Julia Child, wouldn’t that seem a cinch when two chefs run the place?
What they do make by hand are milkshakes, and it showed. They were creamy and “melty,” reverting to a milky state as they cooled in their fountain glass. You can get them in any of the ice cream flavors, all churned on the premises, be it peanut butter brownie or tiramisu. This being Deep Ellum, there’s a full bar, so you can take your shake with a shot of Bailey’s, if you like.
Get contact information for Twisted Root Burger Co.