It started to seem that finding a parking spot at this West Dallas joint was going to take longer than my actual meal. Finally, my car full of people decided that the seeming popularity of this restaurant had to be worth parking on the dirt alley behind the uniquely named Off-Site Kitchen.
A couple of people blocking one swinging door had our troop divert to the remaining one, but a tall blonde quickly urged us out of the way: There’s a precise way to make a line toward this counter, and the heavy lunch crowd was clearly one she was accustomed to directing.
The line was a long wait, and a hot one. A large, steel fan tried its best with spinning blades to cool the small, crowded customers below it.
Our traffic dictator was short on courtesy but kind enough to hand each of us a laminated menu that expanded on the names of the burgers offered, which were listed on a high-hung chalk board.
By the time our lunches were selected, it was time to take a gigantic styrofoam cup, which had a high fluid capacity for one of the restaurant’s homemade beverages or a large selection of canned sodas.
While you can build your own burger, the listing has plenty to expand your burger tastes beyond what your mom made for you. Regardless, the onions that are grilled onto the bottoms of your burger patty will already take you to a new level.
The bun is simple, but buttery and steaming hot, making the handling of this meal difficult but more delectable.
The Locals Only burger, which is topped with bacon, jalapeño and smoked bacon relish, tomato and a generous side of melting American cheese, is hot with a well-seasoned, quality meat. There’s also a smoky “secret sauce” bringing it all together.
I had to slow myself down in eating it–it wasn’t because the steaming bun was burning my fingers, but with each bite I was discovering that I may have one of the best burgers in Dallas right in my own hands.
The fries are thin and crisp, almost like a tastier, thicker potato stick. They’re a fine accompaniment, but with the flavors going throughout the sandwich beside it, they’re not necessarily needed.
If you happen to be here on a summer day, don’t worry about your food going cold: with the exception of a narrow counter inside, most of your seating options are outside with a few umbrellas for some shade.
Keep in mind that once you’ve made it to Irving Boulevard and you’re circling the block because the miniature parking lot is full, your used gas and possibly short walk will all be worth it.
Location: 2226 Irving Blvd. in Dallas, 75207, 214-741-2226
Hours: 10:30 to 2:30 daily (they say they will be open for breakfast and dinner soon, too)
Ambiance: Crowded and hot, full of hungry diners knowing the it is worth it
Alcohol: beer served
Special thanks to Allison Wisk, who recommended Off-Site Kitchen to me.