Boogie Burger: Swanky sidewalk style 

Although no one is exactly sure where the term "boogie" comes from, there is general agreement that to boogie means to dance. Squeezed into a space a little bigger than a walk-in closet on Westfield Boulevard between the old Jazz Cooker's patio and the Broad Ripple Steakhouse, Boogie Burger doesn't suggest a dancehall so much as a sawed-off version of one of those deco-era sidewalk diners that used to be modeled after railroad dining cars. The place has room to seat about a dozen people so, if you intend to sit, aim on getting there a little on the offbeat.

But that's OK, because Boogie Burger feels like a kind of clubhouse. Where else are you going to find a color shot of the Guggenheim Museum in New York cheek-by-jowl with a Led Zeppelin tour poster?

Step inside and you're greeted by the backyard aroma of char-grilled ground beef. In Boogie's case, this means Black Angus, in third of a pound portions.

The menu's on the wall; orders are placed at the counter. There are plenty of variations on the burger theme: Single ($3.99), double ($5.99) and triple-deck ($7.99) versions with classic condiments and four kinds of cheese are only the beginning. You can also get burgers muscled up with grilled pastrami and swiss ($6.50); fried egg and cheddar ($5.50); grilled pineapple tops, ham and swiss ($6.50) or grilled Serrano chilies topped with pepper jack cheese ($5.75), to name a few.

Red meat-averse friends are welcome. There are burgers made with soy patties ($5.25) or black beans ($5.25); and sandwiches made with grilled ahi tuna ($6.85), pork tenderloin ($5.75) and chicken - grilled ($5.75) or fried and breaded Buffalo-style ($5.85).

Sides include fries treated with garlic and parsley ($2.95) and thick cut onion rings ($2.85).

Oh, and there are salads ($3.75 for a garden, $7.25 for one with grilled ahi tuna).

It's a lot of menu for such a pint-sized space. We sampled the Boogie Burger, topped with lettuce, tomato, red onion and mayo; the Chipotle Black Bean Burger, a blend of black beans, onions, green chilies, peppers and brown rice; and the citrus-grilled Ahi Tuna Sandwich. We added a sack of garlic fries and a vanilla shake.

The sandwiches were served on sesame seed buns that were serviceable, but nondescript. Boogie's ingredients are where the action is. The burger was tender and juicy with barely a hint of grease. Although the Chipotle Black Bean Burger struck me as being a tad charred at the edges, it revealed pleasing layers of flavor and spice a little farther in. The Ahi Tuna Sandwich was the star. Served with a spicy mayo along with lettuce, tomato and red onion, the steak tasted fresh and was perfectly grilled.

Given their pungent aroma in the sack, we expected the garlic fries to potentially overwhelm everything else. But the fries, which the menu says are tossed in fresh garlic and parsley, proved to be mild tasting and a little soft to the touch. The milkshake made a pleasant chaser.

No sooner had we placed our order than Prince took over the sound system, intoning the opening lines to "Let's Go Crazy." And, believe it or not, our food was ready by the time that song was done. That's boogie.


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David Hoppe

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