Best Bites: Burger Bar ‘grinding’ at highest level

Jul 31, 2012 3:00 AM

No night is complete for me without a nice meal. Sometimes a burger is just what the doctor ordered – although my doctor probably would be happy for me if I skipped a burger here and there.

But I have a job to do. I can’t slack burgers for anyone. It’s all about the eats.

The Las Vegas Strip is great for watching games, hitting the tables and playing poker. Nothing beats the vibe of the Strip. Locals like me know there are many outstanding places around town.

Grind Burger Bar & Lounge is one such outstanding place, especially if you’re looking to step up from fast food burgers. It’s located at 360 E. Tropicana Ave., next to McCarran Airport on Tropicana between Koval Lane and Paradise Rd. That puts it very close to the Thomas & Mack Center.

Since moving from Pittsburgh to Las Vegas in 2008, the same year Grind Burger Bar opened, I adopted the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels as my new hometown team. I am a proud season ticket holder. My wife and I love going to Rebels games. I like to wait until after the game for my meal.

That’s where Grind Burger Bar’s build-your-own burger joint, just minutes from the T&M, fits in nicely. Enter the GBB and you’ll be handed a clipboard with paper work to fill out. Yeah, I know homework stinks. But trust me this paper work is fun because you’re filling out exactly how you want your burger designed.

First pick your type of bun. Then choose the meat you want (ground chuck, meatless veggie or turkey) and then determine the size of the burger patty and, yes, size does matter.

Now comes the fun part – choosing the cheese, toppings and sauce. There are six different types of cheese to choose from, 10 topping offerings and 20 different sauce choices.

Among the toppings are spinach, grilled asparagus and black beans with garlic. Please don’t rat me out to my doctor, but a fried egg on top of your burger doesn’t get any better.

The meat is fresh, not frozen, and the toppings are made daily. If you don’t mind shelling out $10 for the burger plus extra for cheese, sauces and toppings you’ll definitely satisfy a craving for a great burger.

Grind Burger Bar also has pizza and appetizers, including Thai calamari and sweet potato fries. They have a wide variety of beers. Also on the menu are old-fashion milkshakes and deserts such as ice cream sliders. There are plenty of TV’s to watch your favorite teams. There also is a separate lounge with gaming and flat screen TV’s.

Grind Burger is my favorite burger joint. I give them 3½ out of 4 forks.

Marco, the senior handicapper at Pregame.com, co-hosts First Preview every Thursday night at 11 on ESPN 98.9 FM. Follow him on twitter @MarcoInVegas.