This past week I had the chance to eat at Bobby’s Burger Palace (BBP), which is located inside of the brand new Maryland Live! Casino. The Burger Palaces were designed by Chef Bobby Flay of the Food Network.
The Bobby’s Burger Palace that I visited is just one of 10 Burger Palace’s located along the East Coast! This Burger Palace is special though, it is the 10th and the biggest! It is the only Burger Palace with a full bar that serves as a hangout for the restaurant’s guests. It is also the 2nd BBP to be located inside of a casino setting. The first Burger Palace opened 4 years ago in a shopping center and each of the following Burger Palaces were built in close vicinity. Flay explained that he wanted the restaurant’s to be close together so that the staff of each one would be close knit. He also explained that he wanted to be able to visit all of his Burger Palace’s when arranging a visit to one.
Flay owns and operates many other high end restaurants in New York. When asked why he decided to opened a burger joint, he said, “I was a burger kid, and I am still a burger guy.” Flay told us that burgers were a key part of his childhood and that he still remembers his favorite burger joint, JG Melons, which is located in New York City. Flay also explained that another motive behind the Bobby’s Burger Palace chain, which was to give his fans a chance to eat food created by him without having to travel to New York or pay high end prices.
Now, onto the food! Flay looks for consistency in his product. He wants each burger at each Burger Palace to taste the same. Bobby’s Burger Palace uses only the best ingredients for their delicious burgers. The Burger Palace’s use Certified Angus Beef with a ratio of 80% beef and 20% fat. The burgers are then griddled when enables it to be cooked in its own juices. Flay’s burgers are cooked to medium or medium rare, unless the customer requests otherwise. Next is the cheese, which Flay feels is the most important part of the sandwich besides the burger itself. The cheese should be melted completely! In each of the Burger Palace kitchen is a sign that states, “Bobby says melt the cheese completely.” The cheese actually led toFlay’s idea for his famous Cruchburger. Flay explained that when he was younger he always enjoyed eating the chips that the cheese on the burger melted onto. Flay states that contrast in texture is important to good food. Therefore, he added thin crisp chips to his classic burgers to make the eating experience that much more enjoyable. Next is the bun. “The bun with holds the burger is soft,” said Flay, “it should become part of the burger itself.” BBP offers a variety of burgers, each having its own special list of ingredients; all of them can be crunchified!!
Flay also prides himself on his shakes and fries! The shakes use 11 ounces of ice cream, which only contains all natural ingredients. Flay stated that it took him and his cohorts a while to find the right blender that gave the shakes the consistency that he wanted. Those who know BBP will always order the pistachio shake! In regards to the fries, for anyone wondering, they are hand cut! “At this price point, there very few restaurants that don’t use frozen french fries,” said Flay. The fries go through a 2 day process which enables them to be served fresh to the customer with Flay’s famous fry sauce!
Now, once you decide that you want to try some of Flay’s deliciousness at BBP, the process will go something like this: you will walk in, order at the cashier, decide on a sea, and your food will come to you. A waiter will then explain to you the different sauces available to you at your table, which are: yellow mustard, ketchup, chipotle ketchup (because Bobby likes a little spice), jalapeno hot sauce, and his traditional burger sauce which is actually steak sauce. Flay stated, “you decide how long or how short you want your experience at BBP to be.” Flay explained that he really likes having his own burger joint. “People who like to eat burgers have a favorite place, and I like having the chance that BBP will be that favorite place,” said Flay.
My experience at BBP was amazing! I ordered the classic crunchburger, which was probably the juiciest burger I’ve ever eaten. I also ordered the fries which were nice and fresh. The fry sauce was tangy and a great addition to the crispy fries. Finally, I ordered the pistachio milkshake, what a delight! The milkshake was of perfect thickness and taste. I have never had a pistachio milkshake before BBP but I can tell you it will be my first of many! Overall the atmosphere was great, the colors were fun and the design of the seating was anything but traditional tables. BBP is a great place for parents to take their children and get quality food. Although BBP is located inside of the Live! Casino that should not deter families from eating there. It is conveniently located right outside of the food court and hardly involves entering the casino. BBP will also make a great place for gamblers to stop and grab a quick bite. The staff and service at BBP was also wonderful, I was impressed to see so many staff in the kitchen. Overall, my experience was more than I thought it would be. Flay and his staff sure know how to please their hungry guests!
As Bobby would say, “that’s the BBP story!”
Just a side note: Before I went to the BBP meet and greet, I read Flay’s biography. I realized that his ambition and his love for food began when he was very young. His discovered his passion for food at the age of 17. As a college student, I can appreciate the fact he stayed true to his passion and sought out his dreams. Oh and one more thing, Flay stated that when he sees cities, he sees ingredients. As for Baltimore, he sees Old Bay. Keep a lookout for a Maryland inspired dish, Bobby Flay style!