With a name like MooBurger, it’s not a surprise that this place is a magnet for pipsqueaks and the adults wheeling them around. Sure, you can get a grown-up burger (say, a bison patty with mushrooms, caramelized onions, arugula and blue cheese, $14) and dine here amongst adults once all the neighborhood kids are tucked into their beds, but if you’re among those pushing a stroller, this upscale burger joint may grant you the hottest date you’ve had since said stroller came into your possession. Exhibit A: When we appeared in the doorway with our baby-on-wheels, a strapping young gentleman dashed over and gallantly lifted the front end of our stroller up a step or two into the restaurant. The gesture was so chivalrous, I couldn’t help but feel a little weak in the knees.
Exhibit B: Rustic wood paneling, exposed beams overhead, soft lighting and modern banquette seating aren’t the kind of things you normally find in an openly kid-friendly restaurant (such as the supermarket-bright Five Guys down the street, where parents can help themselves to a ketchup-streaked stack of plastic high chairs). At 6pm on a Wednesday evening, most of Moo Burger’s tables were full and there were children at each of them, all as well behaved as tiny adults. (My own one-year-old was double-fisting and occasionally gagging himself with fries, which was the rudest behavior I observed.)
Exhibit C: You haven’t seen a menu this overwhelming since you read The Very Hungry Caterpillar (which I read this morning, approximately seventeen times in a row). We’re talking five big multi-ingredient salads, six dressed-up hot dogs, fourteen topping-oriented burgers (with seven patties to choose from: bison, lamb, beef, turkey, chicken, salmon and mushroom), seven types of cheese (including house-pulled mozzarella), ten sides (all sold separately: $4 pickle fries, $4 zucchini fries, $6 fried mac ‘n’ cheese and more) and six types of milkshakes (made with Blue Marble ice cream, $7), not to mention an array of draft beers and soft drinks. The basic beef burgers are good and juicy ($9), as are the turkey club burgers ($11), which get a kick of flavor from applewood-smoked bacon and cranberry mayo. The fresh-tasting salmon burger ($13), topped with house-cured salmon, could’ve benefitted from a little more mustard crème fraiche and a little less bun, but the unexpected favorite was the buffalo chicken burger ($13) piled with carrots, celery and blue cheese. If you like variety, you could dine here for weeks and never eat the same meal twice, and if you’re kid-adverse, you can always get your food to go.