Home Run Sliders changed my mind about tiny burgers
Home Run Sliders
As the newest concept from The Deep Fork Group, Home Run Sliders garnered a lot of attention when it opened in the summer of 2011. I was, of course, very interested to try it as well. But, I have to say, I’ve never been a huge fan of the “slider” concept. To me, it’s always just seemed like a clever way for a restaurant to maximize revenue by charging a premium for a very small burger. So, I approached Home Run Sliders with a bit of skepticism.
Fortunately, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by every visit to Home Run Sliders. They’ve provided some pricing options that still allow a person to get a good value. And, most importantly, the taste of everything I’ve had makes it hard to deny Home Run Sliders its due accolades.
Though they may be small, these burgers are some of the tastiest I’ve had. Each comes with about 3oz of fresh, never-frozen beef. It’s good-quality meat, well-seasoned, juicy and cooked just right every time I’ve been. The meat has some thickness to it so you don’t feel like you’re just getting a tiny little portion. I also really love the bun. It’s a split-top roll and it’s just the right size for the amount of meat. The whole thing is very well balanced and it holds up very well.
Because of the quality of the meat and bun, I’ve never felt like I had to dress the burger up with crazy amounts of toppings to enjoy it. Home Run Sliders does offer some “premium” toppings and combinations, but I have almost always preferred just to get the “build it yourself” variety. This option allows you to choose from a wide selection of cheeses and dress it up with any of the standard toppings for $3.25. That’s a pretty good value, but even better is the “Grand Slammer” which gets you four of these sliders for $9.75. If you’ve got enough people, this is a great way to enjoy their burgers at a very good value.
Of course, Home Run Sliders does have some additional premium toppings like Bacon, guacamole, jicama slaw, tabasco rings and the like which you can try out for just a bit more. They also offer some “non-burger” sliders that feature chicken, meatballs, a veggie option and, my favorite, the “Walk Off” which has thin slices of Prime Rib with swiss cheese and a horseradish sauce. I do recommend trying this one if you’re in the mood for something different.
Another great value at Home Run Sliders is the fact that you can add a side order and a drink to any slider for $2.50. If you order the Grand Slam, you can add up to four sides and drinks for $2.50 each. The sides at Home Run Sliders are very good as well, including regular fries, sweet potato fries, tater tots, kettle chips, onion petals, and some super creamy mac and cheese. Sides purchased by themselves range from $1.50 to $2 and most of the sides are sized to share.
So, as an example, I took my wife and oldest son and we split the Grand Slam with four sliders, three sides and three drinks. It was a ton of good food for right around $17. That’s a value I can get behind, especially given the quality of the food.
I also consider this restaurant very kid-friendly. Though they don’t have a dedicated kid’s menu, every burger is really kid-sized already. It’s also hard to go wrong for kids with the sides and they even offer soft-serve ice cream in a miniature baseball helmet cup.
Though the baseball theme is a bit heavy-handed for me, the atmosphere at Home Run Sliders is very clean and comfortable. There’s free wifi and lots of TVs for watching games. It’s a fun place. Oh, and I also should mention the ketchup bar. They provide about twenty different flavors of ketchup — everything from Dr. Pepper ketchup to Ancho Chile ketchup and the list goes on and on. Though I probably would just as soon have regular ketchup, it is fun to try the different varieties and it’s fun for the kids as well.
I do have one complaint about Home Run Sliders. I’m not a fan of the containers in which they serve their sides and drinks. The baskets with the burgers are sturdy enough but the sides are served heaped up high in very flimsy cardboard and the drink cups are about as thin as can be. I suppose this may also be due to the baseball theme — serving things like they would be served at a ballpark. But given the “premium” quality of the food and the nice environment, I would expect something a little more substantial. It makes the sides especially hard to eat as pulling one fry out of the pile without spilling can be a challenge. It’s a small thing, but something I hope they’ll consider changing.
UPDATE (10/8/2011) — Since publishing this review, I’ve returned to Home Run Sliders and have noticed they have improved their serving containers. Burgers and most sides are served together in the baskets now and they now have reusable drink cups you can take home with you. Much improved!
But even if they don’t change anything, I’ll still return to Home Run Sliders. This is quality food served at reasonable prices in a nice, fun environment. Have you been? If so, let us know what you think in the comments below.