Putting a bare foot forward in CrawfordsvilleNick Rogers | Tuesday, May 01, 2018
Everybody’s got their favorite weather app. Some even toss colorful words into the forecast that may miraculously match up to your feelings about this year’s meteorological maelstrom.
Mine uses a dirty word, too: “Blizzard.” For what feels like forever, I’ve seen “blizzard” in the extended forecast. Now, has it yet come to pass here this “spring”? No. But it has snowed far too often, and for far too long, for that word to not trip my trigger.
By the time you read this, I’m sure spring will have pulled things together, worked hard and applied itself. But staring down a possible 8 a.m. Monday “blizzard,” I tricked myself into feeling a warm-weather vibe on a non-vacation budget.
Just off Crawfordsville’s main drag, you’ll find the Barefoot Burger. Necessary health codes keep them from literally embracing the title. But its vibe is, so the song goes, a no-shirt, no-shoes, no-problems kind of thing – vibrant spring colors, a downstairs tiki bar (open until midnight and with specialty drinks) surfboards propped against the walls, and a rules-free approach on building your burger. (Choose one with 10 patties and finish it under house rules, and you can end up on the Wall of Fame. Opposite that wall are the restaurant’s many Best Burger awards.)
Pick your meat (including bison, chicken, turkey or veggie options), bun (with a gluten-free choice), cheese, condiments and run wild. Sriracha mayo with blackened pineapple and peanut butter? Sure. Fried egg, avocado and guacamole? They’ve got the napkins.
You can get other things at the Barefoot Burger, so in the interest of fairness, I started with their signature appetizer of seafood nachos – topped with shrimp, crab meat, lobster cream sauce and white queso. The lobster cream sauce added some good dimension and depth to the queso, even as the nachos could have used a bit more body from the shrimp and crab.
I always trust the chef’s choices at burger places, at least on the first try. So I tried an in-house, 5-ounce Angus creation on this visit – the Jamaican Burger, topped with melted Brie and bacon with jerk seasoning and brown sugar.
Each sandwich comes with a side of fries. Like weather apps, everyone has fry preferences. Hand-cut may not be your favorite, but the hot, hearty – and, at lunch, bottomless – way they’re served at Barefoot Burger might win you over. With crispy bacon and creamy Brie, the Jamaican Burger was a tasty mix of textures; I didn’t quite get the sweet-and-spicy mix suggested by the description, but it was still a solid, juicy choice.
The only real downside of my visit to the Barefoot Burger? That I still had to futz with my winter coat when I left. But (fingers crossed), you can go now and, as the sign at the front suggests, enjoy the freedom of flip-flops and a fine burger.
IF YOU GO
- The Barefoot Burger
- 127 S. Green St., Crawfordsville, IN
- 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sunday
- 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday-Thursday
- 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday-Saturday
- Tiki bar open until midnight each day
- Last modified: Friday, April 27, 2018