403 Blue Star, (210) 635-0016, chefjohnnyhernandez.com
More than four years in the making, Burgerteca, Johnny Hernandez’s latest concept is taking Southtown to Mexico with loaded burgers, over the top fries, and homemade ice creams inside a colorful venue.
Burgerteca has taken up residence on the ground floor of the Big Tex Flats behind Blue Star Arts Complex. Bright walls give way to even brighter décor: colorful alebrijes, fantastical folk art sculptures dot the neveria’s corner, while a larger-than-life mariachi doubles as host.
When it comes to burgers, the chile con queso (a nod to SA’s bean burger) combines a beef patty, namesake cheese sauce, black beans, tomato, cilantro, chipotle-lime mayo and house-made corn strips for a textural delight, while the Oaxaca burger, doused in mole negro begs you to grab more napkins. Per reviewer Ron Bechtol, “don’t ignore the right side’s Big Tex Classic with tomatillo ketchup and chipotle lime mayo.”
The fries, themselves an exploration of crispy goodness, are great on their own, but try them as queso fundido fries if you’re in the mood for a flavor explosion. Seared poblanos, melty Oaxaca cheese and fresh chorizo cover the fries and we won’t blame you for not sharing.
Perhaps Hernandez’s most appealing opening since his first La Gloria, Burgerteca combines the best of both worlds in a comfortable setting made for big groups and bigger appetites.