A month or two ago I had the opportunity to try Z Burger, an up and coming burger chain in the DC metro area.Â The worst part about Z Burger is the factÂ that it isÂ essentially a blatant copycat of Five Guys.Â However, this is also the best part about it.Â Instead of falling short, they seem to have risen to the challenge of largely measuring up to Five Guys.
When you enter Z Burger you are confronted with a menu almost identical to Five Guys – fries, single or double burgers, cheese burgers or bacon cheese burgers, plus a list of 20 or so toppings, all at no extra charge.Â The differentiation from Five Guys comes in the form of additional menu items – cheesesteaks, onion rings and about 70 different milkshakes, with flavors ranging from Birthday Cake to Peanut Butter & Jelly.
We placed our order and our burger arrived wrapped in tinfoil adorned with the Z Burger logo:
A healthy sized burger for sure, and as I always do, I loaded it up with almost every topping available:
The burger is juicy and tasty, although a little cleaner and less greasy than a Five Guys burger. It lacks the depth of greasy flavor most Five Guys burgers have, but hits about 90% of the flavor notes necessary for a good burger.Â On to the sides:
The fries might actually be slightly better than Five Guys. They have a good fresh taste and are complemented perfectly with vinegar.Â But after that, we moved on to the real star of the Z Burger show, the onion rings:
Click below to keepÂ reading for more photos and thoughts on Z Burger!
Put simply: these are da bomb.Â Lots of breading that is perfectly crispy and manages to stay flavorful without being greasy.Â One of the most jonestastic things about eating onion rings is when you bite into one and end up pulling out a huge piece of onion, leaving you with an empty shell of onion-less breading. It sucks, but it’s inevitable, it always happens at least once an order with onion rings. But not with these onion rings my friends. I have now had them three times, and every single time the onion rings break off into perfectly balanced bites.Â For some extra flavor, try dipping them in the Z Sauce, which is essentially a hybrid of russian dressing and remoulade sauce.
People, people, we haven’t even gotten to the shakes! I had a strawberry cheesecake which was perfectly solid, but unspectacular. My friend got a rocky road shake:
On my most recent visit to Z burger I got a Peanut Butter & Jelly shake, which I was curious to try. Sure enough, it tastes EXACLTLY like peanut butter & jelly. Unfortunately I realized about 5 sips in that is not a flavor combo I can drink 16 oz’s of without feeling a bit bloated and nauseous.
Overall Z Burger is very solid. Those who say it is better than Five Guys have a pretty good case to make – the burger is of almost equivilant flavor, but less greasy, while the onion rings are outstanding and the shakes get the job done while giving you incredible selection.Â There are two locations in DC right now, TenleyTown and Glover Park, but expect Z Burger to keep expanding to Dupont, Chinatown and other neighborhoods.