Stone Werks Big Rock Grill
San Antonio, TX
I’m giving up burgers.
Yep. You read that right. I’m swearing off burgers.
I know. That’s like the Pope giving up Catholicism.
Or Venezuela giving up socialism.
Or Hillary giving up politics.
Things that just do not, cannot, will not, ever happen.
But after choking down one of the worst burgers I’ve ever eaten in my life at Stone Werks in San Antonio, Texas…
Finished with hamburger, at least in restaurants.
Why is it impossible for restaurants to properly cook a patty of ground beef?
I know, I know. Because some bloodsucking lawyer will sue the restaurant unless every microscopic trace of bacteria hasn’t been incinerated to death.
But if you insist on incinerating my meat into a hockey puck of Texas sun-scorched cow dung, why don’t you just take it off the menu?
Just stick to things that are supposed to be incinerated, like chicken fried steak.
Don’t charge me twelve bucks for a burger and then ruin it. You’ll just tick me off.
What especially ticked me off is I asked for it “medium.” You know, the way God intended a burger to be. A little char on the outside, pink on the inside, and plenty of juicy goodness to drip on all sides.
But almost no restaurant in our safe space America today serves burgers like that anymore.
It’s gotten so that I purposely order my burger rare, just in the hopes I can avoid getting rock hard cow flesh on a bun. And even that doesn’t always work.
But here I am, deep in the heart of cattle country and I make the mistake thinking this place might know how to cook beef.
My “medium” bacon and smoked Gouda burger was nothing but a hard patty of grey meat. Even the bacon was overcooked.
There is a fine line between the savory smoky flavor of good bacon and the bitter taste of burnt bacon.
The obnoxious flavor of burnt bacon completely overpowered the smoked Gouda. I’ll take their word that it was even on my burger.
Tasteless cheese. Burnt bacon. Dry, overcooked beef.
This burger desperately needed some condiment salvation.
Unfortunately, none was provided. Except a ramekin of cocktail sauce.
Yeah, the bartender accidentally gave me cocktail sauce instead of ketchup for my fries. And then proceeded to run off and disappear for 15 minutes.
I’m glad I didn’t dump it on my burger. Of course, that might have been an improvement.
The fries were a tedious bore, even after the waiter reappeared and gave me ketchup.
Okay. So far we have crappy, over-priced, over-cooked food. Lousy fries. And inattentive service.
Not a great way to earn a top rating.
The only good thing about Stone Werks was the beer selection.
The place had a pretty decent range of tap handles from both national and Texas craft breweries.
The Lone Star State is not known for good beer, but being a good American, I knew I should try the local brews.
First was Wild Hare, a pale ale by Shiner—that little brewery in South Texas more famous for the bland Shiner Bock.
Unfortunately, Wild Hare is pretty bland too, confirming my theory that good breweries make good beers across the board, or vice versa.
Not that I want to slander Shiner Brewery.
I’ve done the brewery tour several times. It’s fun. Their beers are a nice alternative to the ubiquitous Coors Light.
But, the fact is, Shiner just doesn’t make very flavorful beers.
Next I tried the locally brewed Ranger O.P.A., which stands for Oatmeal Pale Ale.
Now that’s something different.
I’ve tried oatmeal stouts. But never an oatmeal pale ale.
This one was smooth and creamy with sort of a fruity, yet bready aftertaste that pushed the hops to the background.
Not really a fan.
I guess I’m giving up on Oatmeal Pale Ales too.
I’ve never left a bar so depressed.
Is my backyard really the only place in America I can trust getting a good juicy burger? If I want my burgers done right, do I really have to do it myself?
How am I going to survive a burgerless life on the road?
As I drove out of Stone Werks suburban hell parking lot and made my way to the San Antonio Airport, I contemplated what a tragic experience this had been.
Sure, I’ve reviewed some pretty bad meals before, but this was different. The road ahead will never be the same.
Stone Werks, you ruined my life!
Rating: Would Clean My Grill with Free Shirt.