Tuesday, January 18, 2011

New Fire Burgers has big burgers, very little charm

Posted By on Tue, Jan 18, 2011 at 11:15 AM

A combo double cheeseburger meal includes very good crispy fries.
  • A combo double cheeseburger meal includes very good crispy fries.


If there were an award given for the least inviting restaurant interior in the metro, the new Fire Burgers snack shack, at 240 East Linwood, might get the prize. Still, the tiny dining space is a lot more pleasant than either of its previous incarnations, the Gyro House and the short-lived fried-chicken joint called King Shark.

click to enlarge FATCITY_FIREBURGEREXT.jpg


The new owner has cleaned up the small building -- across from

Costco -- and given the tiny lobby and dining area a new paint job. Now it's a

nice warm red, but the room was arctic-cold yesterday, and I

rubbed my hands together to keep warm as I waited for my $6.49 combo

meal: a double cheeseburger, fries and a drink.

There's still, like the two preceding restaurants, a Middle Eastern component to Fire Burger. Not unlike another case of an Arabic-style dining spot being turned into a burger joint -- the former Jerusalem Cafe, which has been transformed into KC Smoke Burgers, as Jonathan Bender reported yesterday -- the menu still boasts gyro sandwiches.

The menu isn't elaborate and is handwritten in black marking pen on a sheet of laminated white paper: burgers, that gyro sandwich, a Philly cheesesteak, chicken wings, fried chicken strips, and fried Twinkies and fried Snickers bars.

The prices are only slightly cheaper than those at KC Smoke Burgers, and that location is a full-service sit-down restaurant. One orders at the counter at Fire Burger, and the same man who handles your cash also grills the burgers and tosses the potatoes and Twinkies into the deep-fryer. You can stay to eat in the somber, silent dining room if you like, but not many people do. There are only four tables.

The prices range from $2.49 for a single cheeseburger (add two more bucks to make it a combo with fries and a beverage) to $4.49 for the gyro sandwich. My double cheeseburger was very good: two thick beef patties slathered with mayonnaise, ketchup, chopped onion, a slice of fresh tomato and a lettuce leaf. It's a messy burger. The crispy fries were crunchy and heavily coated with a mild but appealing seasoning.

The place is open 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

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