Bobby J's Old Fashion Burgers

The intersection of Bandera Road and 1604 is a bustle of retail and entertainment options. However, travel just a mile and a half outside of the loop to Helotes and the pace slows and a small-town flavor starts to take over. And nowhere does that small-town flavor come alive like Bobby J’s Old Fashion Hamburgers.

If you look up “burger joint” in the dictionary, you’ll find a picture of Bobby J’s.  The interior is covered in tin sheet paneling, a corrugated tin ceiling, and rustic décor with kitschy signs like the one entreating diners to “Be nice or leave!”  Bobby J’s is a foam plate and plastic cutlery kind of place, and each table has a roll of paper towels next to the condiments.

On this Friday night, the line at the order counter was almost to the door. Fortunately, Bobby J’s menu is posted on a huge sign for you to see while you wait. The delay isn’t long, though, so check it out while you can – there are almost two dozen 100% all-American beef burgers to choose from.  And no wimpy burgers, either – options include either the third- or half- pound options. (There is a quarter-pound burger, aptly named “The Baby Burger,” but let’s just call that the “kiddie menu.”)

Among the burger choices are the one-pound Hungry Texan, the Pizza Burger and the Fiesta Mexicana burger, complete with refried beans, onions, bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, salsa and cheddar cheese.

And if you’re really hungry, you can try to tackle the Mighty Gonzilla Burger, made of three pounds of beef. When you add all the veggies to it, this gargantuan burger tips the scales at nearly five pounds.

First up was the third-pound mushroom and sautéed onion burger, complete with melted swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato and mayo. Sweet potato fries were substituted for the traditional.

The well-done patty (Bobby J’s will cook your burger to order if asked) was tender and flavorful, and the mushrooms and onions were deliciously encased in melted swiss cheese. The buttered and toasted bun had just the right amount of crispness on the outside while still light and airy on the inside.

The sweet potato fries were sliced thin, but the portion was generous, and the flavor did not disappoint.

Next up was the chicken fried steak. Though you would think it would be difficult to cut into it with a plastic knife, it slid through the tender cutlet with ease. The breading was delicious and well seasoned, and the peppered cream gravy had the perfect consistency. It might not be the largest cut you’ll find, but the portion is very filling. The accompanying fries are not your ordinary, fast food stick potatoes. Sliced thick with the skin still on, they will melt in your mouth.

As for the rest of the menu, you won’t find any frou-frou food here. There are a couple of vegetarian options among the burgers, and three or four salads. But mostly what you’ll find at Bobby J’s is good old fashioned comfort food.

Even the sides lack pretension – each of the dozen items are fried, from the obligatory french fries to fried green beans, fried bottlecaps (jalapeños) and fried dill pickle spears.

In addition to the burgers, Bobby J’s also offers a few chicken and seafood dishes, as well as a corn dog, grilled cheese and a BLT.

Aside from tea and fountain soft drinks, there are three upright coolers full of bottled beer, additional soft drinks and a few cocktails-in-a-can, such as Sex on the Beach and Bahama Mama. Along with half a dozen of the more popular Mexican beers, expect to find more than a dozen or so of the top domestic beers, including seven varieties of Shiner. Lone Star aficionados will feel right at home, too.

                Finally, no burger joint worth its salt would be complete without live music, and Bobby J’s offers entertainment on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. The BryanBros, a Helotes-based duo, provided diners with toe-tapping acoustic country, rock and blues tunes. The music is indoors during the winter months, but once March rolls around the shows move outside to the pavilion.

Bobby J’s is located at 13247 Bandera Rd. in Helotes. They’re open Mondays through Saturdays from 11am to 9pm (the bands generally play until 10) and Sundays from 11am to 8pm. Burger prices start at $3.75 with most in the $6.50 range.

 

 

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Paul McIntier
219 Hendelson Ln
Hutto, TX  78634


Phone: 214-695-2847 214-695-2847

E-mail: paulmcintier@gmail.com