Fast Foodie: Big Bob's Burgers
Published: February 22, 2012
Can a chef with CIA creds achieve immortality with an onion ring batter? (More on that later.) Robert Riddle, the Bob of the Big Bob moniker, has relocated his burger shack from a dump near Fort Sam to a relative palace on Hildebrand just west of the railroad tracks. It's at the very least light and airy, and there's an emergently pleasant sliver of backyard patio that must really reverberate on live-music nights. All told, it's a definite step up for a chef who has flirted with fine food and Cajun cuisine over a checkered past.
At least the bacon cheeseburger doesn't bite it. The sesame bun is good and toasty (mm, mm, mm, mm, mm), the bacon is crisp (just the way I like it), the patty is tasty enough (yes, it's more done than we would do at home), and the rest of "the works" is all in very good balance (a fancy term for a burger, but we are talking CIA here). In short, it's a very good burger, and chances are that Bob may even have cooked it himself. Just as good are the skin-on fries, well-done and glossed with just a sheen of grease. No floppy, wilty here. But even better are the onion rings in a tempura-like beer batter lightly sweetened with honey and scented with caraway. Loved 'em, great crunch, even though I admit to missing the caraway. If you ask correctly, Bob will do a mixed basket of fries and rings.
Other options include the usual litany of burgers (including the Big Filthy with too much on it for any first-timer, according to Bob), plus chicken fingers, a Buffalo chicken sandwich, and a dog duo. On occasion there are smoked items such as pulled pork from Bob's patio smoker. And there is chili. It's a decent chili with a reasonably coarse grind and lots of tomato — but better characterized by what's not in it (beans, for example, and a serious chili base) than what is. We suggest Bob put his chef's hat back on, if only briefly, to come up with a more cookoff-worthy product — without beans, of course.
Big Bob's Burgers
447 W Hildebrand