A classic punch line becomes the best place for an authentic burger

Posted by admin on Sunday, February 27, 2011

When my sister-in-law texted me that we were going to eat at Your Mom’s for lunch, I thought one of my brothers had taken her phone and was playing a joke on me; but when we drove up to this burger shack that looked like it had tornadoed in from the boonies and took a seat in one of their outdoor patio booths, we felt right at home. Its eccentric blue and yellow paint job on its old and worn wood frame, with pictures of famous celebrities, from James Dean to Marilyn Monroe draped on the walls, made me feel like I was in some museum, but one look at the menu and I knew I was in the right place for a truly authentic burger I could only get in Austin.

They were star-quality burgers, and I’m not just talking about their taste. Every burger on the menu was named after a celebrity in time, from their Rockefeller and their Willie Nelson to their Buffalo Bill and their Frida Kahlo, and all of them were insanely good. I would know because I tried them all! Both of my brothers, my sister-in-law and I each got a different burger and we all tried each other’s. My oldest brother went up to the counter to order our food and drinks, and after waiting about five minutes, we finally got our drinks from our server – who also was the bus boy, the cashier and sometimes even the chef! It was like getting a one-man circus show with our meal as we watched the guy hustle and bustle back and forth from table to cash register and to another table.

It wasn’t long before our chipped wooden table was covered with burgers the size of my face towering over the top of the red baskets that held these ½ pound monstrosities. All of their burgers start with the basic ½ pound of USDA Certified natural Black Angus beef (“no antibiotics, no hormones…ever!†as their menu proudly displays), crisp green lettuce, thick slices of juicy and perfectly ripe tomatoes, and thin slivers of white onions that added a little extra crunch and bite to the burgers. It’s all the fixins’ that make each burger unique.

First out was my oldest brother’s, the Buffalo Bill, where the beef was tossed in their homemade hot and spicy buffalo sauce and stuffed with crumbles of pungent bleu cheese and jalapenos that give a great kick to the burger, and was then wrapped with salty bacon and topped with their cool and creamy ranch dressing that came spurting out the sides with every tender and juicy bite. All of that stuffed between a bun that had been buttered and toasted on the grill, adding a soft yet crunchy texture to the already loaded burger.

Next up was my sister-in-law’s burger, the Willie Nelson, which also was wrapped in bacon, then stuffed with American cheese, smothered in a perfectly sweet and tangy honey bar-b-que sauce and then topped with a heavenly “Oh! Ring†as they called their version of a crispy, flavorful onion ring. All of this was slammed between two slices of thick, buttery Texas Toast – a perfect fit for this Texas star.

My other brother’s burger came out next – the Rockefeller – where pepper jack cheese was crammed inside the ½ pound patty of perfection, and was topped with even more pepper jack, parmesan cheese, spinach and artichokes – all of the fixins’ for the popular appetizer – spinach artichoke dip. To top it off, they basted a good helping of what they called their Good Fellas sauce right on top. I don’t know what it was that made that sauce so good, but the taste was in the name! Accompanying this fine symphony of flavors was a toasty, buttery bun that held it all together.

That leaves the best for last, my burger! I had the Frida Kahlo, and like her paintings, this burger was artfully put together, it just didn’t stay together! The best burger also proved to be the messiest. The burger was stuffed with pepper jack cheese and chorizo, (a spicy Mexican sausage), and topped with a fried egg, avocado and a chipotle spread that made you feel like you were eating a traditional Mexican favorite. I couldn’t get my mouth around the first bite before avocado began sliding out and yolk from the fried egg came cascading down my arm like paint dripping down a canvas.

We played musical chairs with our burgers, taking a bite and then passing to the right until we landed with our own burgers again. Each one added to the unique array of flavors and textures, with the spicy kick that came a few seconds after diving in to the Buffalo Bill; the sticky sweet honey bar-b-que confection from the Willie Nelson was a great way to cool the palate; the Rockefeller had such creamy rich flavor that melted in your mouth; and then my Frida Kahlo was a mixture of decadence from the fried egg and silky richness from the avocado.

As if a ½ pound burger wasn’t enough for each of us, we also got two orders of their homemade fries, one of them their “Ry-Ry Fries,†which were hand-cut fries, cut not too thick, like a steak fry, and not too thin, like a shoe-string fry, but somewhere in between, and they came out piping hot with a perfect crispness that you could hear with each bite. We also got a batch of their “Hook ‘Em Fries,†which were made just like their originals, but with sweet potatoes, and they came with this warm, gooey, sticky, sweet cinnamon and brown sugar glaze that coated each fry with this sweetness that made you feel like you were eating dessert.

But wait, I’m not done. For taking so long to bring out our drinks, the server-bus boy-cashier –one-man-does-it-all brought us out a fresh order of their fried mushrooms and ranch. I hadn’t eaten all day, so I was hungry, thus I scarfed down a crunchy, batter-coated, peppery fried mushroom that I dunked into the cool ranch, and my tummy was pleasantly satisfied.

Of course when it was time to get out of our seats, I had to scoot and slide my way out of the booth and slowly walk out, holding my belly that now looked like I was one month away from giving birth to triplets. Even though I probably gained twenty pounds after eating there, Your Mom’s truly was the best and most authentic burger I have ever had. So next time someone asks where you want to eat, tell ‘em “Your Mom’s!â€

One bite and you'll fall in love with this burger...as it falls apart! Photo taken by Tommy N)

A clasic burger topped with a popular appetizer favorite - spinach artichoke dip (Photo taken by Gina B)


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