Located off of Leestown Road in the Meadowthorpe Shopping Center next to Pop’s Resale, the exterior of the cafe looks more like a place for inexpensive grub rather than a place that serves some of the best burgers in town. Thankfully, both are true at Meadowthorpe.
I’ve eaten here a few times, and I’ve found out that Meadowthorpe’s burgers are quite possibly the best in Lexington. Shamrock’s Bar and Grille recently expanded their menu, however I’ve found their burgers have been dry and overdone, even when you order it medium rare. Meadowthorpe doesn’t ask how you want your burger done, which is disappointing because I personally don’t want to eat a burnt hockey puck covered in condiments. I’m not sure what’s worse between the two: ordering something and not getting it or not even getting the option. However, Meadowthorpe’s well done burgers are still surprisingly juicy.
Ordering just a regular hamburger is a waste at Meadowthorpe. They offer a wide variety of toppings for your sandwich, including A1 steak sauce, Heinz 57, hot sauce, bbq sauce, bleu cheese, eggs, plus much more.
I’ve talked to a few people in town that claim the place was actually better under their old management – Meadowthorpe reopened under new management back in July of 2010 – but unfortunately I didn’t experience their take on the hamburger. Yet I’m satisfied whenever I order a burger under the new management, so whatever.
Last Sunday (July 10th), I visited Meadowthorpe for the second time in two weeks. During that span when I was away, they redid their menu; half the items previously available are nowhere to be found. However I’m a little hesitant to say it’s a total loss. Many of the old items may have been ordered infrequently, so by cutting the menu in half and eliminating some ingredients it can help the restaurant cut back on expenses. Why order something from a distributor, just so it sits in a freezer or walk-in and takes up space or spoils? If only one person eats the plate, it’s not worth the costs. Still on its trimmed down menu are the local favorites: “The Spalding”(above), “Jo Daddy”, and “Black & Blue”.
“The Spalding” consists of bacon, cheese, egg and a burger on a cooked Spalding doughnut. It’s just as delicious and quick to harden your arteries as it sounds. I believe the secret ingredient may be crack, since this thing is so addictive I can’t recommend eating it even once; you’ll definitely be hooked immediately.
The “Joe Daddy” burger is the Colossus of Lexington: two and a half pounds of burger, four strips of bacon, American cheese, fried eggs, mayo, lettuce, tomato and onion. It’s a sight to behold. I had a photo of it, but I’m a gigantic idiot and deleted it. It’s not only huge, it’s unbelievably delectable. Unlike a lot of places (looking at you, Giacomo’s) Meadowthorpe uses shredded lettuce, which is a lot easier to eat since I don’t have to worry about the entire leaf falling out when I take a bite.
On this last visit, I ordered the “Black & Blue” burger: bleu cheese crumbles, seasoned beef patty, lettuce, tomato, and A1 sauce. A lot of places offer this burger on their menu, so I’m not going to go overboard with my description.
Notice anything missing? I ordered fries with my burger. Fries seem to be always running low at Meadowthorpe. I’ll gladly wait for a fresh batch, however each time I’ve been to Meadowthorpe I’ve had to wait for them to make more fries. It wouldn’t be as big a deal if I didn’t receive the fries right as I’m about to finish the burger. At that point I might as well have walked up and canceled my fry order. Maybe it’s just bad timing on our part: On the last visit we came in around fifteen minutes til closing, while our other trips have been around three in the afternoon. Perhaps they were just finishing up early, or were in the middle of a rush. I’ve stated before that I don’t mind a wait, but every time?
There’s a sticker shock on that monster burger of yours, but in a good way. The “Jo Daddy” burger, the one that’s about six inches tall and in all probability you won’t finish in one try, costs $6.50. That’s without fries or drink, but that’s three pounds of food for less than the price of a lousy meal at Wendy’s. Most sandwiches are in the $5.50-6.75 price range, but you’re getting a big meal for your money.
Meadowthorpe Cafe isn’t perfect, but Meadowthorpe Cafe’s burgers are pretty close to it. Hopefully you’ve had the chance to try one, but if you haven’t yet…then what are you waiting for?
(Note: There is no website for Meadowthorpe Cafe. Directions are available on Urbanspoon or Google)