Shake Shack, the very popular burger chain originally from New York, opened its first San Diego location this past weekend inside UTC mall.
Shake Shack is one of many restaurants and shops in the newly renovated and expanded UTC mall and it is one of the openings I was most looking forward to, having previously eaten their burgers and fries.
The restaurant had their grand opening this past Friday and we went on Saturday. I knew it would be crowded, so we arrived about 30 minutes before opening and luckily the line wasn’t too long yet. As it got closer to their 11 AM opening time, the line definitely grew quite long and I think the wait time was around one hour when we left.
They opened their doors promptly at 11AM and we were met with a cheerful staff. After placing our order, we selected our table and waited for our buzzer to light up to get our food.
Pictured here: Shack Stack, Double ShackBurger, Hot Chick’n, Bacon Cheese Fries, Fries, Pie Oh My Concrete and S’more Peanut Butter Please Concrete.
Cheeseburger topped with lettuce, tomato, ShackSauce. The burger patties here are made with 100% all-natural Angus beef. The meat is very tender and flavorful and when combined with all the other ingredients, they work in perfect harmony to create a very tasty burger that doesn’t taste quite like any other burger I’ve had.
My favorite though, is the Shack Stack, which combines the best of both worlds. It’s the ShackBurger with the addition of their vegetarian ’Shroom Burger patty (a breaded and fried portobello mushroom stuffed with melted muenster and cheddar cheeses).
I know the photo doesn’t look like much, but once you bite in, the crispy breading of that mushroom patty breaks open and you’ll find melted cheese and a juicy portobello mushroom.
The Hot Chick’n is a new items, a spicy spin on their chicken sandwich. The crispy chicken breast is dusted with cayenne pepper and served with pickles and slaw.
We weren’t as impressed with this item. It tasted fine, but not memorable and I didn’t think the chicken was spicy enough.
I’ve never really enjoyed crinkle-cut fries until I had them at Shake Shack. These fries are crispy with just the right amount of potato. I have been craving these fries for nearly a year and I was so happy to eat them again.
Bacon Cheese Fries
In addition to regular crinkle cut fries, you can get them with cheese or with bacon and cheese. I actually preferred the plain ones as the cheese fries didn’t stay crispy as long, but I can see this being a popular option.
Shake Shack is also known for their concretes, a frozen custard blended with mix-ins customized for each location. The San Diego ones features desserts from Betty Pie’s Whole and Elizabethan Desserts.
Pie Oh My
Vanilla custard mixed with a slice of seasonal pie from Betty’s Pie Whole (pumpkin right now).
S’more Peanut Butter, Please
Vanilla custard, peanut butter sauce and a peanut butter s’more bar from Elizabethan Desserts.
Our custards melted a little quicker than I expected, so I didn’t enjoy them as much as I usually do.
Overall, we had an enjoyable time at Shake Shack. I was so happy after I bit into my burger and I immediately wanted another one. While their burgers are on the pricier side for a fast-casual experience, they use premium ingredients and the burgers taste unique and enjoyable and I’m so glad they are finally in San Diego (another location is set to open in Mission Valley soon too). If you visit, I also recommend you set aside some time to check out the newly renovated UTC. They have a new parking structure and many new stores and restaurants coming soon.
Shake Shack (located near the new Nordstrom)
4309 La Jolla Village Dr Ste 2350, San Diego, CA 92122