THE GARAGE

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THE GARAGE BRINGS BURGER PERFECTION TO OKLAHOMA CITY

By Greg Horton

The Hal Smith Restaurant Group doesn’t really have a burger concept, per se, but The Garage comes closer than any of their other restaurants. Yes, many of their concepts do make very good burgers, including Louie’s and Charleston’s, but The Garage specializes in burgers.

Executive Chef Brad Johnson began tinkering with burger ideas back in 2010, mainly because the company had stumbled on a great building they wanted to use in Norman. The first location was in that building at 307 E. Main in Norman. Johnson eventually decided on ten signature burgers, but with a twist.

The Garage allows customers to choose from ground Angus beef, ground bison, ground turkey, or a garden (veggie) burger. Burgers are a third pound, making them the perfect size for a meal. If you want the condiments or toppings on the side, you need to say so at the counter—it is a counter service concept, so orders are placed before you sit down.

The burger menu begins with The Classic and a regular cheeseburger and then immediately jumps into more elaborate combinations, many of which are standard burger joint fare, like a fried onion burger or a mushroom and Swiss burger. Johnson came up with some interesting and exciting combinations, too.

The Spicy Sirracha Bleu Burger capitalizes on the rising popularity of Sirracha, a spicy pepper sauce that is seeing unprecedented growth in the U.S. Sirracha aioli is added to a burger with fried onion and jalapenos and topped with Bleu cheese crumbles.

New even by The Garage’s standards is the Pesto Burger. This one is pretty simple, but delicious, because who doesn’t love pesto? Your choice of protein is served with pesto aioli, lettuce, red onions, and queso fresco.

Finally, for a heartier indulgence, try the BBQ Bacon Theta. It’s a knife and fork burger for sure. Barbecue aioli, barbecue sauce, bacon, pickles, and cheddar/jack cheese make it messy, tangy, sweet, and delicious.

In addition to their burgers, The Garage makes excellent tacos, which come in the same protein choices as the burgers. Fish tacos are also available. The tacos are served “street taco” style, and diners can choose flour or corn—flour is the default. A side of chips and salsa accompanies all the baskets, but you can substitute the fresh cut fries for fifty cents.

There is an abundance of entertainment in The Garage, including televisions, video games, and even skee-ball. Because of the sports and entertainment environment, you will find some sports bar style appetizers on the menu, including nachos, chips and queso, four different styles of fries, and onion dip.

The Garage has a full bar with a ton of beer selections, both import and domestic. A menu of specialty shots and cocktails is also available, as are three wines by the glass.

In addition to the Garden burger, healthy options in the form of salads are also on the menu. Diners can choose from three different salad options. A children’s menu and small dessert menu are also available. There are five metro locations, so finding one nearby is pretty simple.

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