Following an afternoon of playing Dungeon World, Jerry and I decided to enjoy a casual dinner out. Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar started in the Dilworth Area of Charlotte, NC in 2007. In December of 2013, a BDBB opened in the Pavilions Shopping Center. They use local and artisanal ingredients and a freshly ground custom beef blend for their burgers. When we arrived, there were several parties waiting to be seated, so we decided to sit at the bar. Looking around the restaurant, we saw multiple TVs and walls lined with posters, signs and license plates. BDBB had the feel of a very modern city sports bar. After a bit of a wait, the bartender gave us menus and after another 10 minutes, she came back to take our order.
Jerry had the Bacon Cheeseburger on Steroids with fries. The menu described it as a basic burger seasoned with bacon salt, 3 pieces of jalapeno bacon, 3 pieces of applewood smoked bacon, topped with Monterey Jack cheese, housemade bacon mayo, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, onion and pickles served on a bun. There was absolutely LOADS of crispy bacon on this burger. With all the toppings, it was a messy burger but not to the extent you had to eat it with a knife and fork. He loved the spicy Bad Daddy’s dipping sauce they served with the hand cut, skin-on fries, but the fries were not crisp.
I had Nick’s Patty Melt, a basic burger on rye toast with Swiss cheese, grilled onions, mayo and Dijon mustard. I had ordered my burger medium, and it came out medium rare. Mustard and rye bread were the prominent flavors. I would have liked a little more of the sweet, excellently sautéed onions on my burger. My side, homemade chips with Ranch, had the surprise of a handful of onion straws in the bottom of the bowl. Not a problem since I like onions, but be careful if you have any allergies.
We wanted to sample a few more items on their menu and returned on Sunday for lunch. We had a great server taking care of us. She checked back to see how we were doing multiple times, refilled our water, and brought out the bill promptly when we were done. We started with the Fried Pickles and didn’t have to wait long before the appetizer was delivered to our table. The pickles had been thin sliced lengthwise, battered, and deep fried. They were a bit greasy, but the strong salty, dill pickle flavor came through clearly.
Jerry had the Shrimp Burger with onion straws. The fresh shrimp patty was well seasoned with spices and fresh herbs and cooked perfectly on the grill. The closest thing we could compare it to if you’ve never had a shrimp burger would be a lighter version of Egg Foo Young. The sandwich was topped with shredded lettuce, a generous amount of lemon tartar sauce, and slightly sweet tomato corn avocado relish. The side of onion straws was huge. All of the sides come in a good sized silver bowl.
I ordered Emilio’s Chicken Sandwich. The buttermilk battered chicken breast had been deep fried until the crust was dark brown and crunchy. Topped with salty jalapeno bacon, crisp red onion, sliced tomato, gooey melted mozzarella, poblano pepper mayo, and creamy guacamole, this sandwich could have feed Godzilla. It took both hands to eat this messy, delicious sandwich extravaganza. I upgraded my side to a small salad. You get to build your own salad by selecting the type of greens, cheese, crunch and vegetables you want, and they toss it all in the dressing of your choice. I had the mixed greens, pepper jack cheese, chick peas, Kalamata olives, red onion, broccoli, and croutons with Chipotle Ranch. Ample portions of all the ingredients I chose were mixed in the salad.
Overall, we enjoyed the food at Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar. The menu is a little pricy compared to other burger joints, but you are getting a very fresh, made from scratch meal. We were completely happy with the service on our second visit and would return because of it.