It was only a matter of time before Don Shula expanded his playing field. The legendary Miami Dolphins coach — the winningest in National Football League history — has brought his Shula Burger concept to Fort Lauderdale.
While it has counter service like any fast-food operation, the new venue, which opened Oct. 17, is anything but typical when it comes to food, prices and service. The burgers, we’re told, are made with fresh, premium Black Angus beef, and Shula’s name is branded on the buns. If you’re eating in, craft beers are on tap, and wine is dispensed from a high-tech system to ensure you get a perfect pour.
We were hard-pressed to limit our choices: Should we take home a Wine Country Burger topped with goat cheese, roasted peppers and tomatoes or a Chorizo, packed with Spanish sausage, manchego cheese, charred onions and a smoked paprika ketchup? There’s also a tasty veggie burger on a multigrain bun and a Caesar salad.
The Shula steak sandwich is at the top of the price scale at $12.99, but you get a 7-ounce New York strip topped with Gruyère, grilled onions and herb mayo on a hoagie roll. For the indecisive, The Don combines a burger with a sliced hot dog, ketchup, mustard and American cheese. You can also create your own burger, with a long list of options.
Some of the best items aren’t big and beefy. We devoured crisp potato chips topped with ranch dressing, blue cheese and Applewood bacon; sliced fried pickles and sweet potato tater tots.
Started in Islamorada, Shula Burger plans to open a Kendall location Dec. 3, with more to come.
Shula Burger, Quay Shopping Center, 1515 SE 17th St., Fort Lauderdale; 954-278-3347, shulaburger.com; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday ; burgers $5.99-$7.99, other mains $6.70-$12.99, kids’ menu $4.99.