1216 18th St., NW
Washington, DC 20036
Neighborhood: Dupont Circle, Downtown
Cuisines: American, Deli/Quick Bites
Sunday through Thursday 11 to 11, Friday and Saturday 11 to midnight.
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Nearby Metro Stops: Dupont Circle, Farragut North
Price Range: Inexpensive
Reservations: Not Needed
Burgers $4.75 to $8.75, shakes $5, concretes $4.25 to $6.50, hot dogs $4 to $5.40.
Special Features: Wheelchair Accessible, Kid Friendly
Among Big Apple imports to Washington, none has been more anticipated than Danny Meyer's tribute to a burger joint, which opened near DC's Dupont Circle in May; a kiosk also opened this summer at Nationals Park. Customers have been lining up since day one.
What's the big deal? The burgers are superb. The basics--thin patties made with meat ground in-house daily, a buttery potato bun, American cheese--don't seem revelatory, but they're much more than the sum of their parts. Add in the Shack Sauce, a mayo-based condiment with ketchup, mustard, spicy seasonings, and pickles, and you've got one of Washington's best burgers.
Desserts here are built around frozen custard, the Midwest's answer to soft-serve. It's blended into killer shakes and "concretes," a blend of custard and traditional ice-cream toppings such as hot fudge, bananas, and cookie dough. Warning: Even a small concrete is a lot for, say, a group of three.
Also good: Shack-cago Dog, a Vienna-beef hot dog done up Chicago style; chocolate and vanilla shakes; Majority Whip, a concrete with vanilla custard, shards of crispy crepe, and seasonal fruit such as vanilla-poached rhubarb.
Open daily for lunch and dinner.