In Buffalo, you are almost always guaranteed to be no more than five minutes from a take-out pizza joint (or two, and sometimes three). There are no shortage of places to get wings or subs, either. But a good burger? It’s either fast food or a sit-down dinner – nothing in between.
Well, until Stack Burger came to town, that is.
Since June, Stack Burger has sat in a tiny storefront on Orchard Park Road in West Seneca. Besides a single picnic table out front, there is no seating – this is strictly a take-out establishment. The front counter is located in a small waiting area painted a brilliant orange and covered in album covers from the 1980s and beyond, giving us plenty to study while waiting for our burgers.
If it’s sophistication or aesthetics you’re looking for, you won’t find it at Shack Burger. What you will find is some absolutely delicious food.
The basic menu is short and sweet – a single, double or triple stack of burgers ($4.80 to $8.99), each with lettuce, tomato, cheese and “Stack Sauce,” a Thousand Island dressing concoction in the tradition of McDonald’s Big Mac sauce. There are several chicken sandwich options, plus salads, sides (fries, onion rings, coleslaw and a battered pickle), a simple beverage list and a single dessert.
If you’re looking for something a bit more adventurous, Stack Burger’s list of specialty burgers – including a Rodeo Burger topped with onion rings and loganberry brown sugar barbecue sauce and a Demon Burger featuring a spice-marinated burger topped with garlic pepper mayo and jalapeno and banana peppers – should satisfy any craving. There’s also the new Hangover burger ($7.99) with a sunny-side up egg, bacon, hash brown, cheese and Stack Sauce.
I kept it classic, ordering a single stack with all the usual fixins’ ($4.80) plus fried mushrooms (50 cents). To make it a meal, I added an order of sweet potato fries and a can of pop for an additional $3.
Though my boyfriend David considered that day’s special – the Big Mozz, a burger topped with mozzarella sticks, mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce – he ordered the Taco Burger ($6.50). With both hot and mild options, it features taco-flavored beef, lettuce, tomato and sour cream, finished off with a generous serving of crunchy tortilla chips on top of it all. David also ordered regular fries and a pop for $2.50.
There might be only one dessert item, but they make it hard to resist – a deep-fried PB&J ($4.50), drizzled with peanut butter sauce and featuring grape whipped cream and Crystal Beach Loganberry jam. Executive chef Anthony Giangrosso shouted “Great choice!” from his post at the grill when he heard us order it.
We waited around 10-15 minutes for our order and eagerly headed home to eat. The food was more than worth the wait. My sweet potato fries, a favorite side of mine, were perfect. They were crispy, salty and sweet, drizzled in some sort of heavenly butter-based sauce. I devoured them and moved along to my burger.
It, too, was delicious – plenty of burger for your buck and cooked perfectly. The flavors of the Stack Sauce and fried mushrooms really stood out. The only thing I could have wished for was a toasted bun. Dave downed his burger in several crunchy, satisfied bites.
And oh, that PB&J. It was exactly as indulgent and delicious as it sounds, from the crispy exterior covering soft white bread to the classic flavors melting together, all topped with grape whipped cream that added a refreshing, tangy finish. I will be dreaming about that sandwich for a while, and a repeat visit to Stack Burger isn’t far in our future.
Where: 174 Orchard Park Road, West Seneca (288-8204)
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.