Eureka Burger was one of the first restaurants I visited after moving to Fresno two years ago. Prior to that I was – admittedly – not a burger fan. On my first or second visit, however, someone pointed me toward the Fig Burger and all of that melted away into savory-sweet, tangy oblivion. Faintly spicy, mustard-dressed arugula cuts against the earthy sweetness of the fig jam… all complementing the smoky savor of the burger. And if that flavor profile isn’t for you, they have a dozen other inventive combinations, such as the Lulu Burger, which was Dan’s go-to dish on our twenty-somethingth visit last Saturday night. Y-u-m.
Inevitably when we come with a group, some wise guy orders the truffle fries and friends are pitted against each other as they try to nonchalantly stab increasingly full fork-loads and shove them into their mouth while everyone else browses the beer list. Dan and I can handle the responsibility of sharing this appetizer only because we have a very strong relationship. You have been warned.
Needing something lighter but equally winning in the flavor department, I ordered the steak salad. The steak was cooked perfectly and the greens were dressed with a cilantro vinaigrette and topped with crispy fried onions and blue cheese. Did I need the red onions as well? Not so much – but it made me feel ladylike to leave something on my plate.
It may have locations in a few other CA cities, but Eureka is a local’s hangout and features a weekly event on Tuesdays called Steal-the-Glass (take home a pint glass from a local brewery when you order the beer on special) and live music on Thursdays.
My most recent Eureka moment came when restaurant manager, Kaitlin MacChesney offered to let us sample a pair of not-as-yet-on-the-menu cocktails. And let me tell you friends, I was cocktail converted as soon as you can say “Earl grey”.
No, I’m not crazy. And no, I haven’t left wine behind. But this little drink featured citrus and cherry flavors against a background of bergamot and had me ready for big hats and a day at the derby (in November… and we’re nowhere near Kentucky).
The moral of the story is: your favorite weeknight burger joint might surprise you on a Saturday evening. When you feel like slipping on some heels and sipping a cocktail, just tell your man you’ve found a local restaurant with amazing microbrews (and isn’t the game on?). Ah ha! Eureka!