This might be the longest “review in the making” that I have ever experienced. I have been trying to get to a Fuddruckers for the past year.
The last time I was at a Fuddruckers was when they had a location in Scarsdale. That outpost closed while the memory of the Mets 1986 World Series win was still fresh in the minds of New York. I was in grade school, and the friends I was hanging out with were ecstatic. They were frequent diners at that location, and it was my first time. I recall the experience being good for me, but it was not too long after my first experience that the location closed.
I had not thought about Fuddruckers for a long time because, out of sight, out of mind. However, about a year ago, I discovered that they were still in business.
Last year, as MG and I were on our way to Maryland, we attempted to stop at a Fuddruckers in New Jersey. We drove up to the door to find that it was closed, and out of business. MG and I ended up at a diner with incredible cinnamon buns and horrible burgers.
In January of this year, when we were in Florida, we spied a Fuddruckers on our way back home from a show. We were on our way to Tampa the next day and vowed to eat there for lunch. What do you know? My Grandmother made a gigantic breakfast the next morning to send us off properly and we were both too stuffed to even attempt to try going.
This year, we were heading back to the Maryland/DC area. Once again, MG and I swore to eat at a Fuddruckers, the build-up now a year in the making. We were going to get to the Columbia location early, have lunch, go to our hotel, relax, and meet friends for dinner and a show. Of course, once again we were thwarted. I forgot something at the start of our journey and had to turn around, loosing an hour of time. To add insult to injury, the traffic was ridiculous. DAMN!!! I was done. I told MG to forget it. This was obviously a cursed enterprise. I gave up. I was done trying to plan.
After going to the National Portrait Gallery, MG and I did a quick search for restaurants in the area. Lo and behold, a few blocks away, right at the opening to the Chinatown area, lay a Fuddruckers. I told MG.
She asked, “Do you want to go?”
“You make the call. I’m done trying to plan.”
“Let’s give it a shot.”
I fully expected to get to the location and find a pile of smoking rubble. I was convinced that this was a foray into disaster. Amazingly, Fuddruckers was there. It was not closed. It was not demolished.
The restaurant was as I remembered. Burgers are available in 1/4 pound, 1/2 pound, 2/3 pound, and a complete pound. They can be cooked any way you choose. After placing your order, you take your seat and wait for them to announce that your order is ready.
The fixing bar has a plethora of options. In addition to lettuce and tomato, there are pickles, salsa, onions, and other vegetables.
I was excited as hell. I got my mayo and ketchup ready for the impending burger. Other toppings are also available: mustard, steak sauce, barbeque sauce and more.
Here it is. We both ordered a 1/2 pound burger, done medium, with a side of onion rings. The rings were pretty good. The onion was substantial inside its shell. The crust around was crunchy and not too greasy. Pretty good and definitely worthy of recommendation.
Check out that toasted fluffy buns. It is a fantastic burger delivery system. I think it was brioche. It was pillowy and delicious.
On to the star of the show. The burger was better than I remembered. It was a perfect medium. There was a nicely salted crust with the right amount of pink in the middle. It was absolutely beautiful. MG was very impressed. She did not expect this kind of quality from a chain restaurant. I was equally as impressed.
Out of the chain burger restaurants that I have tried, Fuddruckers ranks as the best. The 1/2 pound burger seems to be the perfect size. I didn’t see what anyone’s fries looked like, so I have no idea whether they are shoestring or steak fries. Milkshakes are also available. Go. Give Fuddruckers a shot. Skip the chicken, have a burger.
734 7th Street NW
Washington, DC 20001