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Local Flavor: Hopdoddy

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When new restaurants come into the metro looking to shake up the existing market, that’s only good for consumers. Hopdoddy Burger Bar, on 63rd Street and Western in Nichols Hills, is that new restaurant, and you’re going to want to check it out.

Hopdoddy was founded in Texas, and has since expanded to California, Colorado, Arizona, and Tennessee. The Oklahoma City location is the company’s newest, having just opened on July 16. Their menu mixes gourmet, with experimental, with classic, no-frills options, leaving room for anyone with a hankering for a good burger to enjoy.

We had the classic burger, which is exactly what it sounds like – Angus beef patty, grilled to perfection, lettuce, tomato, onion and Hopdoddy’s own “Sassy sauce.” We added some Tillamook cheddar and applewood bacon for a bit extra. This came with a fountain drink, and like many new dining establishments, Hopdoddy offers Maine Root sodas and seltzers instead of Coke or Pepsi products.

If we had just stuck with the burger, that would have been perfectly sufficient – and reasonably priced! But we opted to go the entire distance with our first time at Hopdoddy, so we dived into their appetizer selection and came back up with a serious helping of chili cheese fries.

These fries were not your average “hormel chili and some velveeta or melted American cheese” fries, no sir no ma’am. This was a metal mixing bowl filled almost to the top with Kennebec fries, Hopdoddy’s own chili recipe, actual queso, sour cream, green onions and sliced fresh jalapeños. It was at once sweet and spicy and savory, and probably the best chili cheese fries we’d ever had. They could absolutely serve as an entree on their own.

To top things off and take some of the bite out of our fries, we also ordered a small Oreo shake. Hopdoddy advertises their shakes as “based on our vanilla custard recipe” and we kind of want to know what that is after drinking this amazing shake. Not too watery, not too thick, it was a perfectly drinkable and almost refreshing shake that we’d go back for again and again. And on top of that, all of their shakes can be made alcoholic for a few bucks extra.

So the food was fantastic, and even with our adventure into the realm of the shareables, we didn’t pay more than $25 for everything (before the tip). But how was our experience in the restaurant itself? Well, needless to say, it was pretty busy. That’s to be expected for new restaurants. But Hopdoddy has a unique method of customer management that partially takes its cues from fast food. Here’s how it works.

You walk into Hopdoddy. A server will greet you at the door and hand you a ticket with your party’s size and the table number you’ll sit at. Next, you will go stand in line with menu – or menus – in hand and, after a while, tell the cashier what you and your family want. Then you grab your drinks from the Maine Root fountain and go sit down. Next, depending on your proximity to the bar, a server from the bar area will drop off some drink and shake menus. When your food is ready, another server will bring it to you.

When the system works, it works excellently, but in order for it to work, Hopdoddy depends on customers to actually sit in the seat they were assigned. They’re putting a lot of trust in us to keep their kitchen from devolving into anarchy, so if you decide to eat there, pay attention to that number.

With an inviting atmosphere and amazing food to top it off, Hopdoddy looks to be a major contender in the Metro burger establishment market. Go check it out! 1125 NW 63rd St. a, Nichols Hills, OK 73116. hopdoddy.com for menus, pricing and online ordering.

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