On a recent trip out to visit my parents on Eastern Long Island I decided to swing by Bobby Flay's newest food adventure Bobby's Burger Palace for some meaty nourishment. Currently, the sole location in the future chain is in Lake Grove, NY, in the enormo Smith Haven Mall. The mall is a destination in itself but not really on the way to anywhere, unless you live nearby or are headed to Stony Brook University. It's out there.
The interior is slick but comfortable. The ordering system slightly confusing but very efficient (it's similar to the ordering at brgr where you order/pay first, get a number, and find a seat. The food finds you). And the burgers are pretty damned good. I know that Nick Solares had an unfortunate over-cooked burger experience when he visited but I lucked out I guess. My burger was cooked to a perfect, juicy medium that was pink throughout. They wisely cook on a flattop griddle instead of a gas flame.
There are many wacky burger combos on the menu (the burger piled high with potato chips called the 'Crunchburger' stands out, pictured above with Bobby, Newsday photo) and a few burgers that are trying to be 'regional' but sort of miss the mark (the Santa Fe burger has jalepenos(?) and a queso sauce on it...not many jalepenos in the green chile cheeseburger state. This burger sounds great, but more like a Tex-Mex burger). I stuck with the Palace Classic, a cheeseburger.
I also ordered fries and was surprised to find a very familiar sauce accompanying them...Schnack Sauce! Though that's not what it was called. I asked manager Phil what the ingredients were and he was a bit cagey. When I told him what I thought was in the sauce he smiled. Chipotle and mayo is hard to beat, especially for fries. Cudos to Bobby's Burger Palace for making a very spicy dipping sauce standard with the fries.
I also tried the squirt bottle of Bobby's Burger Sauce that was on the counter and that was amazing. Phil told me it was the same recipe as Flay's signature steak sauce and kicked some ass.
I'll be back, even though it's not really on the way to my parents. They make some kickin' shakes too and I'll need to try this crazy 'Crunchburger' soon.