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Burger of the Week: Dantanna’s

Courtesy of Dantanna's

Courtesy of Dantanna's

Ladies and gentlemen: What we have here is not a sports bar but an “upscale sports restaurant.” At least, that’s what Dantanna’s proclaims on its Web site.

Indeed, this restaurant’s two locations — the Buckhead original next to the Westin hotel, and the downtown offshoot in the CNN Center — both seem like hybrid entities. In Buckhead (above), the bar front bar area has TVs, TVs, TVs galore and loads of bar stools. The back dining room features more discrete sports viewing, mahogany-stained wood, soft lighting and $24 fish specials.

photoBut I was here for the burger ($9).

Before proceeding any further, let me express my apologies for the quality of this photo, which was taken in that softly lit room with my iPhone. Even after adjustment, it still looks like a page I ripped out of a 1970’s edition of Ladies’ Home Journal.

But now let me give you the good news: this is a burger to search out.

Why? Well, for starters, it’s a burger to trust. Dantanna’s lets you know on the menu that the USDA Choice beef comes from Creekstone Farms — a natural beef producer that processes cattle raised without any growth hormones, antibiotics or growth-enhancing drugs. It voluntarily tests all the cattle for BCE, and claims to raise them humanely.

None of this would be worth the bun it sits on, unless the burger delivered in flavor. Indeed it does, with beefy flavor, running juices and that all-important char on the surface.

Other components:

  1. The bun: Not the most flavorful, but griddle crisped and sturdy enough to hold the burger in place. This is a burger one can actually eat with the hands — a plus in my book.
  2. The garnishes: Not so interesting. One overly large, sad lettuce leaf. A pickle and choice of acceptable fries or potato salad come on the side.
  3. The add-ons: Now we’re talking. The cheese selection extends to pepper jack (yay, pictured), blue (nice) and brie (hmm…). Other non-cheese options include griddled onions (tasty), jalapeños and a choice of portobello or button mushrooms, depending on your fungal preference.
Another bad picture!

Another bad picture!

It all adds up to a good, solid burger — the kind of burger that makes for a fine and reasonably inexpensive meal when you want to enjoy the ambiance of an upscale sports restaurant.

I give it three and a half flat-screen television sets.

27 comments Add your comment

Bison Burger Believer

March 18th, 2010
10:52 am

Why would anyone go to Dantanna’s at CNN Center for a so-called “burger” when TED’S MONTANA GRILL is only a block or so away?

Enjoy your diabetes, obesity, cancer and/or heart attacks, gullible patrons of Dantanna’s @ CNN Center.

This is an example of Darwinism at its finest.

East Lake Ira

March 18th, 2010
10:52 am

I’d try this but the fools at 790 AM always seem to be talking about hanging out there when I mistakenly tune in, I’m afraid I’d run into one of those a-holes so I won’t.

Chris

March 18th, 2010
11:57 am

The Dantanna’s burger is awesome. And the potato salad (one of the side options) is some of the best around. And don’t worry, Ira. The 790 A-holes mostly hang out at the Buckhead location.

Foodgeek

March 18th, 2010
12:02 pm

I agree with your assessment of Dantanna’s burger. I’ve only had it once, but it was properly cooked, juicy and delicious. The service at the Buckhead location was very good, too.

I ate a bison burger at Ted’s this past Sunday and regretted it. I had wanted to let my husband try Ted’s for the first time, even though I’ve had mixed experiences there. He ordered his burger medium and I ordered mine medium-rare. His came out very well done and mine was just a shade under well. With bison, because it has less fat, it makes a bigger difference if you overcook it. I tried to send it back, but my server was overwhelmed by that time and she didn’t come back to the table, so I was stuck eating overcooked food.

So bison prevents obesity, diabetes, cancer and heart attacks? Who’da thunk?

Paul A

March 18th, 2010
12:09 pm

Nah…. Five Guys slams everybody. The best fries I’ve ever had. Great service. Fast. I wouldn’t waste my time or my money to go anywhere else.

Droid

March 18th, 2010
12:13 pm

Get a Droid, or any Android phone and toss you iPhone.

The Big Maru

March 18th, 2010
12:47 pm

John -

I hope you’re serious about this being “Burger of the Week”, meaning that you’ll do this again every week. With all of the recommendations for “best burger” coming in over the last few weeks, it looks like you have a subject to write about for quite a while.

Mark

March 18th, 2010
12:54 pm

FoodGeek – “I had wanted to let my husband try Ted’s ” Do you also tell him when and where to take a crap ? I hate women who try to own a man…..grow one, if you want to rule one.

The Big Maru

March 18th, 2010
12:55 pm

John -

On a slightly different note, the burger in the picture looks pretty bloody, meaning it’s probably not cooked to the USDA-recommended temperature. While I can understand why you are so concerned about the meat’s pedigree and all of the bad things that it might have been subjected to, it seems the 2 most common illnesses associated with hamburgers are salmonella and E coli. Unless I am mistaken, these are introduced (or spread) at the time of processing and are killed by cooking the meat to a high enough temperature, and have little to do with hormones, antibiotics, feed, etc.

Comments?

sugarfoot

March 18th, 2010
1:36 pm

Dantanna’s is much better than I expected. (Of course, it replaced the lousy Jocks and Jills at CNN Center). I agree-their potato salad is awesome. I’ll try the burger next time!

Mrspewey

March 18th, 2010
1:37 pm

Hey John,
Have you tried the burger at Gordan Biersch? It is amazing and the fries with garlic are to die for.

bill lumberg

March 18th, 2010
1:42 pm

i knew a guy who said he would eat hamurger raw

Carrie Neal Walden

March 18th, 2010
2:19 pm

Glad you liked Dantanna’s burger (especially since it was one of the ones I “recommended”!) – but that pic isn’t of the Buckhead location! There’s no pillar in the middle of the bar and the stools are different – not to be too nitpicky, but……

Art

March 18th, 2010
7:53 pm

John, first off, I really appreciate your iPhone pic’s because they are real and give me an honest assessment of the food rather than some glossy, air-brushed version… Secondly, why is your site attracting so many people who obviously suffer from ADD? LOL! No offense intended people but FOCUS… FOCUS!!!!!

5thGenATL

March 18th, 2010
9:25 pm

When can we get a review of The Downwind?

AJ

March 19th, 2010
8:02 am

Maru – Salmonella is not an issue with burgers. E.Coli is. And you’re correct about that. The issue with burgers vs steak is that E.Coli lives on the part of the meat exposed to the outside. With a steak, you cook the outside and can have a nice red inside and be generally safe. But with a burger, what was once on the outside, goes on the inside and vice versa. While the chances of disease are lessened with higher quality meats, the risk is still there. It’s a fact that many people forget. If you wouldn’t eat a pink burger at a low end place, you shouldn’t eat it at a high end place either. Just my 2 cents.

Jadzia & Maru

March 19th, 2010
4:48 pm

AJ & Maru – The principal reason our beef gets tainted with E.Coli is due to fecal matter being on the cow/steer. The principal reason our cattle get antibiotics is because they are confined to feedlots in unsanitary and unhealthy conditions. They are basically living in poop. Not to mention inhumane conditions.
In order for a rancher to maintain healthy stock and not use antibiotics they can not keep them in feedlot conditions. If they did the animals would get sick, and since they aren’t using antiobiotics, they would lose the animal = lose lots of money.
So the first step in eating rare hamburger is to find out if the meat is antibiotic free.
The second step is how much you trust the restaurant to have investigated their source and its reputation.
The third is if they grind the meat themselves. If they do, that means that the ground meat was not exposed to to potential problems at some meat processing plant.
For myself, I love a medium rare hamburger and so I always ask if they grind it themselves on site. If they do, I generally don’t bother with step 1 or 2. If they don’t grind it themselves, regardless of whether it is organic, antibiotic free, etc I then don’t order it at all.
Hope this helps everyone enjoy a juicy burger!

Carrie Neal Walden

March 19th, 2010
5:12 pm

@Art- I had the same thought- I think a lot of people didn’t read JK’s original posts about what he was looking for/trying to do in this particular/specific burger *quest* – hence the comments about 5 Guys, etc. I had to bite my tongue and not respond!

Bill W.

March 20th, 2010
8:57 am

Thanks Art and Carrie. People, if you want to criticize radio station personalities, Apple products women who want to take their man to eat burgers or people who eat fatty beef, go somewhere where someone cares. This is the place for criticizing things like Five Guys’ burned-up, boot-heel burgers or Ted’s strangely-grey, over-cooked bison burgers.

Steve

March 21st, 2010
1:15 pm

Good review, I think Dantanna’s makes a great, well cooked burger. Nice that its so reasonably priced too compared to the rest of their menu. Went to watch some march madness there Thursday and they had a great special where you pick the games being played that day and for every one you get right, they give you $5 in house cash!

Also went to Muss and Turners last night and had the burger…which blew me away (I’d say it’s up there with the best in Atlanta)! Riverview Farms Grass-fed Beef , roasted poblano pepper, cheddar, onions, and house made cilantro mayo on a challah bun…AMAZING. The fries here are also top notch and a must have as a side. John, if you haven’t already, give this burger a try.

Foodgeek

March 21st, 2010
9:21 pm

Well, I don’t think the comment about my husband is fair, because I certainly don’t tell him what to do. I guess I just worded that badly. I should have said, “I had wanted to see what my husband thought of Ted’s, after trying them (because I get bad product more often than not when I’ve been.)”

But my husband arrived housebroken, so, no, I don’t have to tell him where to poop.

Why is Ted’s meat so gray? I’ve noticed it pretty much every time I’ve been and gotten a burger, or even a steak. Odd.

The Big Maru

March 21st, 2010
10:31 pm

@Foodgeek, which Ted’s did you go to? I’ve eaten at 2 locations, primarily the one in Decatur, and I’ve never had a problem with them over-cooking my burger.

@Jadzia, regardless of how sanitary the conditions are where the cow was raised, there is always the danger of contamination, because the bacteria lives in the intestines and it’s very easy to spread it when the cow is butchered. So unless you are 100% confident in the entire process, the last line of defense is cooking the meat to the right temperature (BTW, I like mine just a little bloody too, understanding that there’s some risk involved).

Mike

March 22nd, 2010
6:56 am

You have to drive out to Suwanee to get the best burger at Crossroads Grille! Try the Vinnie burger.

Msquared

March 22nd, 2010
9:59 pm

I thought you would be able to blog about Tiennamen Square in China before you could blog about 5 Guys on Kessler’s website. We are trying to find the best burger in Atlanta, folks.

Like to eat

March 24th, 2010
7:58 am

I make the best burger at home.. really, not that hard to do. ( and without grease)This is yet another chain that sells grease in Atlanta, something that is not hard to find.

Taco Mac, Five Guys, more grease on every corner. Atlanta thinks if you have grease and a big screen, it is a restaurant. Not a hard group to entertain.
Now I see why there are so many obese people in this city, many of which we end up paying for since alot of them work for the govt or city and we pay their healthcare, that is why it is the business of all when celebs try and tout such unhealthy eating habits, not because we want to control what you eat, but please review healthy eating places because I am tired of flipping the inflated bill for healthcare for Atlanta workers. Kasim has done nothing to fix the inflated pension issue, so the more grease you review and tout, the more they eat and we pay

If you must have a burger, go to Craft, grass fed, much less grease if properly grilled without grease and greasy fries, but better if you review a vegeterian place

Sheila

March 25th, 2010
12:35 pm

@Like to eat: do you grind your own meat for the burger? just curious.

[...] of fat than beef. I much preferred the flavor of the Creekstone Farms beef I sampled last week at Dantanna’s. The usual boldness of the cooking at Rosebud didn’t translate into burger love. I give it [...]