Retro RVA hits its full stride with Boulevard Burger & Brew. Red and white tile and roofing; round, chromed bar stools (don't forget to twirl!); and a huge neon sign make anyone of a certain age sigh nostalgically.
We arrived on a warmish Winter day late in the afternoon as it was opening (it's now open for lunch except on Sundays). Already the place was packed. The myriad bar stools were all taken, and we snagged the last high-topped table. Once we were seated, couples and families waited outside for a bit.
What makes this joint different from the drive-ins and burger places of yore (at least in the South) is the addition of alcohol. Beer and wine were available on tap and the cocktails offered the mundane to the neon Weird Science served in a chemistry beaker. The draft red wine was drinkable and very reasonable at happy hour.
The food offerings are basic: burgers, fries, onion rings, chicken sandwiches and fingers, a couple of salads for good measure. The meat from the burgers is sourced from Creekstone Farms, and it is Black Angus and non-GMO. BB&B offers a number of topping variations and, if you want to strike out on your own, they have "Just a Burger" and a list of additions to please any burger palate.
The Kelly's Classic was served with American cheese, mayo, lettuce, tomato, and onion. The inside bun edges were seared and met expectations. The burger was accompanied by a little cup of pickled veggies. A nice tangy touch.
Of course a side had to be ordered as well and I am a sucker for beer battered onion rings. And yes, they were good.
After a burger and onion rings it's usually time to stroll out of an establishment and digest the meal. But no. BB&B had adult milkshakes. So we made folks waiting for a table wait just a bit longer and indulged in a Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Milkshake. Salted caramel whiskey, creme de cacao, and soft serve in a salted rim with a caramel garnish. Whoa! So good and so very, very filling.Next time if we want a milkshake, we will go easy on the other food.
It's nice to have a burger joint on Boulevard. It makes for a bright, colorful spot in Scott's Addition that caters to a variety of folks. May the neon sign remain bright for many years.