By Mike Thayer
Regular readers know that I've been traveling around the Wichita Metro, sampling the burger offerings from just about any joint that has burgers on the menu. It doesn't really matter who, I've sampled burgers from local joints, regional restaurants and the national chains. To determine a true champion of burgers in the metro, a broad sampling has to be taken in order to measure the best. I'm on a mission in the name of "burger science" (cough). For the burger criteria, click here.
Nearing completion of this Burger Challenge and having traveled north, south, east and west in the Wichita Metro, today's Burger Challenge lunch took me to Andover and the Timbuktu Bar & Grill. Established in 1982 and a cash only establishment, Timbuktu is the first and oldest Bar & Grill in Andover and claims to have the "Best Flippin' Burgers!"
I entered the bar at about 11:15am for my first meal of the day. Finding a seat at the bar I was greeted warmly by Diane who was wearing a Dallas Cowboys shirt (more on this later). Taking my drink order, she poured me a tall frosty mug of Miller Lite and after setting it down in front of me took my burger order, the Timbuktu Original which features a 1/2 pound of fresh beef from Yoder Meats. The default side is chips, but I opted for the curly fries.
Enjoying my frosty mug of beer and watching football highlights on ESPN, I was soon entertained by the regulars who started popping in for lunch. They each took turns giving Diane crap about the Dallas Cowboy shirt. It was quite humorous at times, the barbs were laugh out loud funny, but Diane was a good sport about it, taking it all in stride. This passed the time nicely, as it took a good while for my burger to be prepared, but that's OK, because it was well worth the wait.
Presented with pickle slices on the side along with a container of jalapeno relish for a little extra kick if desired, I took a few pics and that first bite. The Timbuktu Original is 'Texas' or 'Southern' style of burger and Timbuktu does it right! The patty had an excellent flat top crust, the beef was juicy and seasoned really well. The grilled onion was spot on and generous in portion, the bacon - despite the "X" method of application - was crispy and had great flavor. There was a nice melt on the cheese and the pickles being served on the side allowed me to liberally apply them for maximum pickle tart coverage. The bun lacked a good toast, but what put this burger in my "It's another dose of YUM" category was the crust on that beef, creating another layer of flavor.
Side Note: The Curly fries were excellent. Fried perfectly and seasoned well, I put some ketchup on the plate out of habit, but they didn't really need it. I also sampled them with the jalapeno relish, which was really good, both on the fries and the last few bites of burger. It was a delightfully good relish.
Costing me $13.50 before tax for the burger and fries, the Timbuktu Bar & Grill Timbuktu Original Burger with a bacon add scored 58 out of a possible 63 points earning it 5 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars. The perfect execution of this flat top burger is what makes it. Reasonably priced, it's definitely worthy of a repeat buy.
Located at 1251 N Andover Rd, Andover, KS 67002 the beer is cold and the burgers are great at Timbuktu Bar & Grill. The service is also top notch, Diane was friendly, attentive and entertaining. I'm not sure she'll ever wear the Dallas Cowboys shirt to work again though.
$pend Wisely My Friends...
Related: Other burger joints reviewed so far
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