I’ve been meaning to get over to Rex 1516 for quite some time so I hopped in around the tail end of happy hour on a Friday night where, from 5-7 PM, they have some little bar bites for around $5. I decided to get a little cheese plate to start because cheese is delicious (duh!), but we all know I was really here to try their burger. The burger on their dinner menu has actually changed a bit since they opened; it’s currently in its 2nd incarnation – the previous version had onion marmalade, bacon, and blue cheese – and actually, as of tomorrow (March 22nd), their Spring menu launches and will feature an all-new burger topped with pimento cheese, red onion, bibb lettuce, bacon and the option to add a fried egg. (Oh great, now I have to come back and try another burger!? Kidding!)
The burger as it stands right now is an 8oz house grind, topped with pepper jack cheese, bread & butter pickles, bibb lettuce, beefsteak tomato, red onion and is tucked under a shiny brioche bun. I ordered it medium and it was cooked perfectly. The burger had a great flavor thanks to the pepper jack and was nice and juicy. I’d had a couple of burger misses lately, but this really hit the spot (And apparently I woofed it down so fast that I shocked the bartender!) My only complaint was the bread and butter pickles; they were tasty and fit in with the Southern theme of the restaurant, but I just didn’t care for them on my burger.
I also hung out for a while and had several cocktails. The atmosphere in the restaurant is very relaxed and cozy, with a nice bar and they were playing old movies on a big screen TV on the wall. The bartender, Sweet Lou, was really knowledgeable and made me a couple of fun, off-menu drinks which I really enjoyed, one of which was a Dutch Blood & Sand, made with fresh squeezed Blood Orange juice! (Top right corner in the photo below)
Clockwise from top left: Sage Advice, Dutch Blood & Sand, Rye & Amaro digestif cocktail, and Pan’s Elemental.
So if you’re in the area, swing on by Rex1516, grab a burger and keep Sweet Lou company!
Burger rating: “B+”