Last night, I fulfilled my long-awaited desire for a burger. I’ve had a serious burger jones for the past month and I thought there’d be no greater place to relieve this than Station 2. It’s a new burger joint in the bottom off Main St. (before Main disappears into no mans land).
This place was featured in Richmond’s best new Restaurants article that I hold so precious. Station 2 (hence the name) is a restored Richmond 2nd firehouse, built in 1899. The bones of a classic firehouse still exist, but instead of firetrucks, equipment, and perspiring firemen, hungry patrons fill this place. Station 2’s done little to make this a “cozy” eatery, it’s still got its tall ceilings, large swing-like windows facing the front, and enhance a garage-like feel. It also carries traditional firehouse theme with obvious splashes of bright reds, it just needs a dalmatian and you’d be set. What Station 2 has done is modernized the space, adding prints and art on the walls, simple wooden tables and booths, and a nice bar nestled in the back space. The one thing I didn’t see (or missed) was the fire pole…does this exists here or am I being literally ignorant?
Onward to the food. I was pleased to see the beer menu consisted mainly of local Virginia craft brews. I settled on the Port City (Alexandria, VA) Wit- pretty much a good ol’ Belgian white ($5.5). My date and I had been famished hours before dinner so we ordered their fried green bean starter ($5) immediately. Now, I’m (a little) ashamed to confess I’ve frequented T.G.I. Fridays many times and had this same app here as well. When our green beans arrived at our table at Station 2, I did a close look over at these. It was if T.G.I. Friday’s fried green bean twin was staring in front of me. They were identical, just plated on a nicer plate. And I hate to admit it tasted indestinguisable too. Not that I hate this “type” of fried green bean, just a little disappointed that I could have gone to a chain place and ordered almost the same thing. The green beans also came with wasabi aoli…exact same thing Friday’s does. It was still good, just took a little fun out of hoping for something different.
For our burgers, I scanned the menu over and over, to the point where I was googly-eyed. Hey, you got 17 crafted burgers to choose from! Instead of settling on the standard menu (I’ll save that for my next trip) I went with the nightly special, the raspberry chipotle burger ($10)- a burger with raspberry chipotle sauce, melted gouda, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and onion nestled between a bun (locally baked at Lucille’s bakery). I was happy to see I could modify my meat choice from ground beef to turkey or black bean. Always trying to be a good girl, I chose a turkey. For my side, I settled on the house favorite, sweet potato tater tots…how could I not? My date went with the George Orwell ($10), burger with fried eggs, bacon, and mozzarella on grilled texas toast. She actually took the bacon out (travesty!) and opted for a black bean patty instead of beef and went with fries for her side.
While waiting for our burgers to arrive, we noticed the table next to us sipping on some pretty fancy looking milkshakes. I glanced the menu (for the millionth time) and spotted their little section of adult milkshakes. How smart. I thought the Naughty Girl Scout- vanilla ice cream, irish cream, crème de menthe, crème de cacao, & chocolate chips sounded divine. I didn’t order it but I eye-envied anyone around us looking like they were sipping on it.
Our burgers arrived after a short amount of time; I was pleasantly pleased. The burgers looked fantastic. Mine tasted exactly as it was described with spicy chipotle flavors and sweet raspberry. I was pleased I went with turkey, it was light and cooked perfectly. I was initially excited about the bun (being local and all) but it wasn’t big enough to cover the burger. I prefer bread and buns (ha) to spread over the entire burger or sandwich. This one didn’t, so there were times I was trying to strategically piece together bites using lettuce as a bun; carnal creativity at its finest. The bread also didn’t have a doughy consistency or taste to it either; a little disappointing but nothing to ruin my experience. For my dates burger, it was awesome. I’ve never tasted a black bean burger so savory and full of visible ingredients, you could see the black beans, rice, and carrots in the patty. I really didn’t know rice and carrots were ingredients in some black bean burgers, after having a taste, I knew why. It was great and almost took presidency over my burger.
My favorite was the sweet potato tots, I can’t even describe how happy these made me. This is why I eat good food. They were simple, crunchy on the outside, sweet inside, and perfect. Their fries were pretty good, too. A little skin left on, lightly salted, and light.
Something interesting that my date and I agreed on was the light-ness of the meal. Usually when we devour burgers and fries (even turkey burgers) you have this greasy hangover-feeling afterward. We didn’t get this, and even went with a dessert post-burger gorge. Being classic, we stuck with the Starr Hill brownie ($5). It was good, basic, and tasted like a standard brownie with chocolate ice cream. Nothing to glamorize or shoot down; just a nice brownie ending a good meal.
This place was good, the food was flavorful, and light- odd for a burger place, right? As soon as we pulled out of our [tightlysqueezed] parking spot we were already talking about going back and what burger we’d get. This should let you know I’ll be back. Absolutley.