Burgers and Beer at Treehouse

Just got back in from dinner at Treehouse Restaurant and Pub with my buddy Jimminy. I love that place. I’ve only been twice but, I have to say, their burgers are leaps and bounds above those at Flip Burger Boutique.  They also have a great outdoor seating arrangement that is great on a warm Spring evening. It’s cool to see folks out dining with their dogs in tow.

It was also good to catch up with buddy Jim. Hopefully we’ll get to make the catch up burger a regular occurence. It’s good to have a buddy that is able to and appreciates talking about college basketball. Most of my friends around here are either ambivalent about it or are pro basketball fans.

I just don’t get it. Growing up in North Carolina, college basketball is life. Here in Atlanta, college basketball is something that happens in the background after the SEC football season is over and before the Braves begin their season. Thankfully, there is an AM radio station that carries UNC basketball every so often. When I really need my fix, I torture myself driving around looking for spots where the signal is strong enough to come through.

I really need to get cable, I think.

Anyway, Jimmy went to school in Ann Arbor and is a long-suffering Michigan fan. He prefers college football, but can still speak intelligently about the world of NCAA basketball.  Being a Michigan fan, and finding his team beaten by them in most years, he’s no admirer of Duke. I appreciate that in a friend. He who hates my enemy becomes my friend.

I also “discovered” a new beer. I know it’s been around and it’s really no secret, but I tried Grolsch for the first time, at least in my memory. I have to say, it is a great beer to accompany a burger. It’s flavorful, clean, refreshing and not intolerably heavy. Heavy is a no-no for a burger beer. I may like it more than I like Stella Artois. And I like Stella a great deal.  I’m happily impressed and foresee more Grolsch in my future.

If you’re in Atlanta and you need a good burger, a good beer and good buddy time, do yourself a favor. Check out Treehouse Restaurant and Pub, over in Peachtree Hills. It’s a good time.

Review: Flip Burger Boutique

Flip Burger Boutique
Flip Burger Boutique

Just got in from dinner with my buddy Jimminy (a.ka. “Jiminez“). He just got back from New York with the Missus and it’s been a while since we caught up so we decided to hit up the fashionable new burger place off Howell Mill, Flip Burger Boutique. I read about it a few weeks ago on Chow Down Atlanta and have been wanting to try it out ever since. A group of us tried to go weekend before last but we’re unable to brave the two hour wait to get a table.

My initial impression? As fads go, this too shall pass.  It’s a unique concept that is well done but …I expected to be knocked out by the burger and I was mildly underwhelmed. I’ll go again but won’t brave a huge crowd, even though the tables turned over pretty quickly.

Our wait tonight was about 20 to 30 minutes, if that tells you anything. Tuesday night at 8 o’clock and the place was hoppin’. We bellied up to the bar to have a beer before dinner. The first point of judgment came from there. I always judge a place on the selection of beers they have on offer.

I can’t say this place was Brick Store Pub or The Porter, but they had some notable beers. The beer list wasn’t huge but it was decently select.  They have one of my favorite beers, Three Philosophers, in a bottle. Good way to score points, that, but I’ve noticed Three Philosophers popping up in more and more places these days. God forbid, I think it’s becoming trendy. Ditto for Allagash White, the beer of the night. I forewent the Three Philosophers on the theory that a lighter, crisper beer would provide better accompaniment to a heavy burger.

As it turned out, by the time we were seated, we’d pretty much decided to move away from beer and over to the house milkshakes. Flavors run from “Nutella and Burnt Marshmallow” to “Pistachio and White Truffle” to, get this, Foie Gras. I kid you not. They have an actual Foie Gras milkshake. They swore up and down that it was surprisingly good. For $9 dollars, it should be. But I just couldn’t imagine drinking any kind of duck liver milk shake.

I can vouch for the Nutella and Marshmallow shake, however. I’m sure it was at least a thousand calories, but it was great.  Ditto for the “Krispy Kreme” milkshake.  I didn’t try it but have it on Jimmy’s good authority that it tasted like several Krispy Kreme glazed donuts in ice cream. In other words, it was no kind of bad.

What turned me lukewarm on the place was the burger. They had some really interesting burgers on the menu and they certainly are crafted with attention to detail. But they weren’t all that great, honestly. They were good, but not wait-thirty-minutes-on-a-Tuesday-night great.  The meat was fresh and of the choicest cuts. The ingredients were interesting and a good mix of the traditional and non-traditional. The sides were unique and everything was well presented but…the burger itself left me wanting a little more.  I guess the burger just didn’t live up to the hype.

That’s why I think the place will simmer down to normal crowds in a few more months. Trendy is great but people will soon move on to the next big thing. When that happens, I’ll go back again. It was a good atmosphere and there are several more burgers I’d like to try. And I just have to find out what that Foie Gras milkshake is all about.