Cafe Reviews

Smashburger Brings Popular Regional Sides (and Loads of Oil) to All Locations

Last week, Denver-based Smashburger announced it would now offer its Sweet Potato Smashfries and Fried Pickles at all of their 71 locations due to popular demand.

Both sounded tasty 'til I saw my order -- then it was a slippery, oily side slide. Hey, Smashburger, the camera don't lie.

Given the success of Smashburger's crazy-delicious original Smashfries, the Sweet Potato Smashfries, a regional item that began in Dallas, Texas, should have been amazing. A sweeter substitute for the original strings of potatoey goodness, Sweet Potato Smashfries are tossed in rosemary, olive oil, and garlic. Mine weren't tossed in olive oil, they were drowned in it. While a nice flavor mix was going on between the sweet potato and the rosemary, the garlic was undetectable and the sogginess and lukewarm temperature of the fries made for a most miserable and messy experience.

The downhill side slide continued with Smashburger's fried pickles. Starting out as a topping on the Oklahoma Smashburger, customers began asking for them as a separate side item, so Smashburger started offering them at select locations with a side of buttermilk ranch. Now rolled out for everyone including Fry Girl, my fried pickles were presented crazy-hot, resting on a paper bed soaked in grease, seriously salty, and with zero flavor in the breading.

Sorry, Smashburger, maybe your newly national sides should save stayed in their regional residences. Fry Girl ain't makin' the trip either way.

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Laura Hahnefeld
Contact: Laura Hahnefeld