Where buns are fluffy, Angus beef is fresh and boozy milkshakes abound
The new kid on the block, TJ Reed’s Better Burgers & Shakes is a breath of fresh air. In a strip center not far from Interstate 45, the Dickinson restaurant is filled with honey-hued beams, flashes of the restaurant’s signature grass-green hue and a path of Edison bulbs leading customers from the front door to the dining tables.
TJ Reed’s is shining and new, having opened in the fall of 2016. Flat-screen TVs gleam from a far wall, framed black and white photos hang on the wall to cultivate a sense of nostalgia, and a patio beckons from beyond the glass doors. Between bites of burgers and fries, diners can watch the kitchen choreography against a backdrop of white subway tiles.
The high standards are hard to miss at TJ Reed’s. Signs on the walls and menus repeat the mantra, “start with quality — end with quality.”
Each patty is ground in-house from a 100 percent certified Angus beef blend of chuck and brisket. Fresh, fluffy buns are baked throughout the day, french fries are hand cut and all condiments, including the pickles, are made from scratch.
The Mexi Burger captures all of these things. It’s a towering cheeseburger served on a soft bun smeared with spicy chipotle mayo and smothered under a flood of chile con queso, blistered jalapeños and beer-braised onions. Crisp lettuce, sliced tomato, pieces of creamy avocado and pickles snuggle the patty and make the stack almost too tall to grab. Almost.
For the less adventurous, The Classic and the Bacon Cheese Burger are options, or patrons are invited to build their own burger from a list of more than a dozen options. And if burgers aren’t your bag, you’ll be pleased to see that TJ Reed’s offers juicy chicken sandwiches made with cage-free, hormone-free birds and large, fresh salads. Even a grilled Portobello Burger made the menu.
The classic pairing of burgers and fries is done one better at TJ Reed’s. The restaurant uses Kennebec potatoes. The name might not ring a bell, but the light tan, thin-skinned potato has been around since the 1940s. The spud’s flesh is firm and low in moisture, making for a superior fried product that browns beautifully and avoids the ultimate pitfall: a plate of limp and soggy fries.
Wetting your whistle or satisfying a sweet craving is all too easy at TJ Reed’s. Silky vanilla and chocolate custard is made fresh daily. Cones, cups and hand-spun shakes are worth the extra calories. Maine Root sodas, made with cane sugar, replace the typical fountain drinks. Ice cold buckets of beer, pints of craft beer, and glasses of wine, as well as hand-crafted cocktails and boozy milkshakes, are equally enticing. Either option is a worthy end to a classic American meal.
TJ Reed’s Better Burgers & Shakes
614 FM 517 W., Dickinson, 832.738.1140