Flippin’ Good Burgers
I don’t eat beef – just don’t like the stuff. I don’t have some moral, cultural, or dietary reason, I simply don’t like that combination of texture and flavor. So you might wonder why I’m posting about burgers. Well, the truth is, regardless of what kind of patty you put on it, there’s no finer cuisine than the burger. You can dress it up as fancy as you like and charge $150 for it, or you can get it for under a buck, and all that space in between is a sweet spot of creativity and good eats. There’s just something about having piping hot food assembled just seconds ago with exactly what you wanted on it in your hands. It feels intimate, comforting, and familiar, even if it’s a combination you’ve never tried before. So, even though I don’t enjoy eating beef, the burger experience is something that I can’t turn down.
About a year ago, my BFFs and I discovered what at the time was a burger paradise. With lots of creative burger options along with great fry varieties and dipping sauces, you can go there often and never repeat your order if you’re adventurous. We go out to eat several times a week and it was great to have Burger Jones added to our rotation, so we went there every week or two for several months. We really enjoyed the fun tongue-in-cheek atmosphere and couldn’t believe how long we hadn’t known about them. And as we tend to do, we shared the place with our larger circle of friends and brought visiting out-of-towners because of the over-the-top experience.
One night, we went and sat down just like any other night. I was there with my partner, Matthew, and 2 of my BFFs, Coral and Crystina. I got excited when I saw the shake special was a Butterfinger malt! I couldn’t wait to order and eat so I could get on to the dessert. Our server came around and asked if we’d like to order drinks, and we asked about the specials. That’s about the last good memory I have from there. His answer was “just a bunch of sissy drinks.” Now, I’ll give him that he might not know right away that Matthew and I are gay, or that the word “sissy” isn’t taken very well by gay men thanks to it being overused by biggots to describe us. But it seems quite clear that unless he was extremely dense he should have noticed there were two girls sitting at the table. Perhaps they would like to order a sissy drink? We prodded to find out what those drinks actually were, because we were in fact looking to drink a little. But his next answer was “It’s martinis and cosmos and stuff.” Well now, regardless of the “sissy” comment, he’s failed to answer the one question that can make our bill higher to get him a better tip – twice. We ask a third time, and he describes what drinks are actually on special. One is a chocolate banana martini. I was really interested in that drink, but none of us ordered a drink because we were too annoyed with his attitude.
We order our food and eat it while discussing how unbelievable our server’s behavior was, as it got worse. We never got any refills for our water, and he brought the bill when he picked up our plates – that being the only time we saw him after ordering – and never came back. So, we left without buying any drinks or dessert, and with a look of surprise on our faces. It wasn’t even busy, but we had been completely ignored the entire time we were there.
“Don’t worry guys,” I said, “I’ll tweet them. We’ve tweeted back and forth before, so I’m sure they’ll handle it.” So Coral and I tweeted as we left the restaurant:
Guess my server @BurgerJones didn’t want me to have dessert. Or leave a tip. Never had such a ‘meh’ experience here before.
— Jason (ツ) (@jayysenn) October 16, 2010
Is it just me? bothers me when waiter brings the bill & sets it at table before ur done eating & doesnt even ask about dessert. @burgerjones
— Coral Biegler (@CorieRose) October 16, 2010
— Jason (ツ) (@jayysenn) October 16, 2010
I expected I’d hear from them by morning, or at least in a day or two, as we’d conversed within hours of each other many times before. But instead, something interesting happened: I got followed by My Burger, a place I hadn’t heard of before. Since my career is Social Media for a large corporation, I love seeing other companies who really get it. Now, whether they followed me to see how the Burger Jones scenario played out, because I mentioned burgers and am in the Twin Cities, or because they needed some competitive research, I never asked, and it doesn’t matter. What matters is they made themselves visible to me the very next day without it feeling stalker-ish, and it took Burger Jones 3 weeks to get back to me. Ergo:
— Jason (ツ) (@jayysenn) October 23, 2010
Which prompted an invitation:
@jayysenn we always got your back! Plus we know our burgers are the best in town. Let us know what you think. Customers are straight legit.
— My Burger (@myburgerusa) October 25, 2010
What did I do? I turned around at my desk, rolled my chair over to Coral who sits next to me, and pulled her earbuds out of her ears. “LOOK AT TWITTER. RIGHT NOW,” I told her. We both were amazed at how My Burger got to me before Burger Jones even had a real chance. We did some research and found out we could only get My Burger by going downtown, Monday – Friday before 2:00, pay for parking, and find our way through the Skyway system, with which neither of us was familiar. But with the way we were invited, we couldn’t refuse.
The next week, Coral and I went all the way to downtown Minneapolis just to try out their burgers. From that moment we’ve been addicted. Burger Jones eventually got back to me, but it was a little too late. We had already dropped them from the list of places we frequent, and they never made it back to the list. I know it was an issue with a server, not the business as a whole, and they did try to make it right. I’d go there if a friend of mine was going and invited me, but I haven’t stopped in since October.
Since we tried My Burger, we’ve taken people there from as far away as North Carolina and Texas. We’ve left home at 7:30 to try breakfast. We’ve delivered their food to Richfield and Burnsville for BFFs that couldn’t get out for lunch. And we talk to them nearly every day on Twitter. It’s an opportunistic love affair that never should have been considering the location and hours, but it works. We still drive downtown and pay $12 to park just to have great burgers, on their time instead of ours. So if you’ve been searching for that perfect burger exactly the way you like it, My Burger has your burger. Coral and I will gladly take a long lunch to take you there, as long as you promise never to go without us.
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