Wednesday, May 20, 2009


So Burgerville is pretty much the most Portland-esque thing there is - other than that employee at Subway the other day who took fifteen minutes to make my sub and who kept talking to me about how he overdrew his bank account and how working at Subway doesn't give him enough time to focus on his music, while my sandwich sat there, begging for condiments. That, let me tell you, was also pretty Portland. Burgerville, fortunately, is very Portland in a much less annoying way. In simple terms, it's just a fast food chain based out of the Portland area, extending a little south from the metro area and a little north to southern Washington. They sell things most fast food chains sell - except almost all their food is local, from the beef to the cheese to the lettuce and tomatoes. They highlight fresh, seasonal food production. Earlier this year they were highlighting fresh rosemary and then basil; last month they highlighted spinach specials; this month, asparagus. Asparagus! Won't find that at McDonalds. Oh, and they offset 100% of their energy use by buying wind power. Oh, and they recycle their canola oil into biodiesel, and compost all of their food scraps. What.

The most important thing to know about Burgerville, though, is their seasonal milkshakes. Oh man do I love milkshakes. And oh man let me tell you about these. Right now, during most of late spring and summer, there are strawberry milkshakes, which I'm a big fan of. Classic, but delicious. Late summer, there are blackberry milkshakes. (Did you know Oregon is the country's largest producer of blackberries?) AND THEN. In fall. PUMPKIN MILKSHAKES which taste like pumpkin pie through a straw. Oh man oh man do we look forward to the day pumpkin milkshakes arrive. And then in winter, CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT MILKSHAKES (did you know Oregon is the country's largest producer of hazelnuts?) which I also have a big weakness for. And then there is a period of short, painful drought before strawberry kicks in again. These are the kind of milkshakes which are so thick they hurt your mouth muscles trying to suck them in through the straw, and if you finish a whole one you immediately have a rich-dairy-overload tummy ache, but it is SO WORTH IT.

Other things from Burgerville I like a lot: Their spicy black bean burger; the deluxe chicken sandwich. Only bad thing about Burgerville: to pay for all this awesomeness, the prices are a bit higher than most fast food chains. It's not surprising for Kathy and I to pay close to $20 when we are both getting full meals (including, of course, the milkshake). I know it's worth it, but sometimes when you are poor and also live five minutes away from Taco Bell, where you can get a meal for two for $5, well, it's hard to say no sometimes. But when we are feeling rich, or when I'm just having a milkshake craving I can't resist, it's Burgerville all the way, baby.


  1. Oh man, I love this place so much I want to send fan mail. I was way to excited to hear that they use free range eggs and when we saw that our milkshakes(mocha perk shake, oh my)cups lids and straws were compostable!?!? Even the kids were excited about that.

  2. damn you! i am so hungry right now and i already ate lunch! rory started a hard core diet a few weeks ago when he freaked out about the fact he will be 30 in a few weeks. and now, he is making me painfully aware of each and every calorie i put into my body. i could use to lose a little but it still sucks. lol. go have a milkshake for me!