Black Burger Opens On Canal With Burgers, Calamari Fries & A Classy Slogan
There are now two cheap eats spots on a grimy stretch of Canal St., with a branch of $1 pizza spot Roll And Go and the recent addition of Black Burger right next to each other at the corner of West Broadway. Both places were clogged with high school students and because Black Burger is little more than a counter with a couple of stools for eating, it doesn’t take much for the line to stretch out the door. Inside, you’ll find a simple menu of either single or double hamburgers or cheeseburgers (fresh, never frozen!), fries and shakes with a grilled cheese and calamari fries thrown in for good measure. And beware the warning on the wall: “Once you go Black, you never go back.”
I’m not quite sure if this is the first location of a possible chain, or if it’s just some weird spinoff of Roll and Go. The burgers did look pretty good on the griddle and the guy putting them together was doing so with a lot of care despite having a lot of people waiting. The prices are pretty fair too. It’s been a long time since I ate in a mainstream fast food place, but I would think it’s pretty on par for NYC.
I ordered a Black Burger ($3.95) and calamari fries ($3.95) because how could I not? I was tempted to get the Double Black burger (two patties) for $5.65 but that would have put me over the $10 limit. There are four combos to choose from, all under $10 that include fries and a small soda. I scoped out the fries and they were the seasoned, coated curly variety which was why I instead opted for the calamari. You can also get a shake for $4.
The balance of my single burger was spot on. The patty was thin, but still decent for a sandwich this size and they didn’t overload it with lettuce or tomato. What I did get a lot of was raw onion and the thin, sweet special sauce that both dribbled out the back of the bun. I would recommend eating the burgers as soon as possible as the special sauce causes a fair amount of sogginess.
Why don’t more places serve calamari fries? These were thick rings of squid, thickly coated and fried flat kind of like clam strips. They got a little chewy when they cooled and while somewhat salty, I dipped them in ketchup for added flavor since they didn’t come with any sauce. With Sea World gone, you could do a lot worse in the area for a fried seafood fix.
Black Burger, 15 Canal St. (nr. W. Broadway), (212) 431-7651