The burger craze in DC started a while ago, however it continues to grow with chef’s taking new takes on this American classic.
Black & Orange (formerly Rogue State) is no different, as Raynold Mendizabal provides his take on gourmet burgers for all to enjoy. He provides a range of flavors from Asian inspiration (Now & Zen) to Jamaican heat (No Burger, No Cry), and many more in between. It appears almost every major continent has a representative. For those looking for a simple burger, he has that covered too, Square One is your standard salt and pepper seasoned burger. Not into beef, well there is a turkey burger (The Rogue Turkey) and a chicken sandwich (Mr. Pollo). If meat isn’t an option, then the Old MacDonald should be able to take care of you.
Burgers come in two sizes, the welterweight (quarter pound) and the heavyweight (half pound), and in two doneness levels, “pink or no pink”. There is a small selection of complimentary toppings, while cheese is extra. Sides consist of fries (regular and sweet potato) and onion rings. Sodas are dispensed via fountain, and they do have a small selection of wines and craft beers on tap. A lunch combo is a welterweight burger, fries, and a drink for under $10. There is a condiment counter, complete with multiple mayos and ketchup.
The interior follows along with the menu options, and provides a edgey yet classic design. The entry and front seating areas are complimented with nice dark rough hewn wood walls, while the back seating area is covered in brightly colored graphics. In order to get to the back area, passing the open kitchen exposing the grill is required. Reinforcing the mantra of the Black & Orange (black from the grill, orange from the flame).
Priding themselves on providing a better quality burger than the other guys (there is a sign on the door demonstrating this), Black & Orange seems to have struck a nice balance. Even with all of the additional seasonings, the beef flavor still comes through. The bun is light and airy, and does not become a mushed grease ball. The fries are crispy and delicious (especially when dipped in the variety of mayos).
Black & Orange is a great stop for burger lovers, and with the lunch combo, won’t cost you and arm and a leg. With their long hours, they even make a great stop after a late night. If you are a burger fan, they are well worth a check out, and seems many in DC agree, as they were recently voted 2012 Readers Choice “Best Burger” by CityPaper.
1300 Connecticut Ave NW / 14th & U Street NW – Washington, DC