Plan B Burger Bar, Because there Should Have Been a Plan A

I have wanted to try Plan B Burger Bar for quite some time. One thing you can count on, if a restaurant’s name includes the word “burger,” the Food Dudes are so there.
I first tried Plan B’s burgers at Mohegan Sun’s WineFest in early 2012 at their slider station and was very impressed. I knew Plan B had a Milford location but never made the trip because I heard it was consistently packed so I was thrilled when a Stamford location was in the works. Once opened, the Stamford location was also crowded so I gave it a few months before I finally decided to dine there.
Now, it’s no secret, me and the other two Food Dudes love burgers, and probably eat them way too much, if there is such a thing. So why was I disappointed in Plan B? 
At least this funny piece of relationship advice was cool.
The Good
 Plan B has a worthy craft beer selection plus seasonals and your server or bartender will happily let you sample anything on the draft board. I tried the creamy, Breckinridge Vanilla Porter. Once I sampled it, I was all in. The vanilla flavor came through without seeming like I was sipping on a root beer and with an under 5% ABV, it was light and I found myself wanting more. Plan B’s beer choices don’t stop at the tap. They also have an enormous bottle variety and those of the canned variety too.
If the hard stuff is what you crave, Plan B is known for their big time bourbon list. You can get a nip, three fingers, or even a flight of some high quality bourbons. Even though I’m not a bourbon aficionado, Plan B could be a great place to start my education. 
The creamy Breckinridge Vanilla Porter

Portabella fries!
Another goodie here is their appetizers/small plates list. I saw a bunch of things I wanted to try like the mini hot dogs, sliders, and mini beef wellingtons, but decided on the portabella fries. These breaded and deep fried ‘shrooms came with two dipping sauces, horseradish ranch and a wonderfully spicy chipotle aioli. I would certainly go back just to make my way around this section of the menu.
The Average
If a place uses the word “burger” in its name, shouldn’t the burgers be seriously off-the-charts ridiculously good?
When I ordered Plan B’s Pretzel Burger (free-range beef, pickles, cheddar, spicy mustard, on a pretzel roll) I was expecting great things. Oh, was I ever disappointed. 
A disappointing burger experience 😦
The server will ask on some burgers, “Pink or brown?” My “pink” burger came back juicy, but brown. I was hungry so I ate it anyway but my patty came out deformed and falling apart to the point where I had to use a fork to pick up the pieces. By the way, a little more seasoning (salt and pepper) is very important when cooking burgers.
This burger’s only redeeming qualities were the pretzel roll and the fries as a side.
The Ugly
Let’s talk about the service, you know, like waiting 15-20 minutes for our waitress to see if we wanted a drink, maybe take our order. And what about the overcooked burger? Oh, wait, I already told you about the sloppy mess that thing was.
Oh yeah, there are a few more issues like the clumsiness and that’s leaving out all the dropped silverware I saw. It was like watching a really bad running back take a handoff.  But I counted three times where a busser or a member of the wait staff tried to enter the kitchen and the plates and person were jarred up, resulting in a heap of broken dishes. Yeah, everyone stares, it makes noise, blah, blah, blah, but I felt bad and embarrassed for the employees. The one door leads to two doors, one to enter the kitchen, the other to exit. TWO SETS OF TWO DOORS might be beneficial in a busy restaurant that is part of the Stamford Town Center.
And the bar area…I didn’t mind the bar itself, in fact, I could easily hang out there and knock back a bunch of good beer. My problem was the tables near the bar. I don’t have a problem with noise, nor do I mind sitting by the bar but could the tables have been any closer? We actually asked our host to switch our table because people just having drinks were too close for comfort. Even still, people were right up in our grill and one bumped up against my guest. I mean, do you want some of my fries? I don’t want to eat and have to ask you to move because I have to get up or ask you to slide over because I need elbow space. A bit more of a buffer zone between tables and the bar might be a nice touch.
I can’t believe I’m saying this but I would go back because I never let one bad experience tell the whole tale. There are some things I’d still like to try, more beer of course, and especially the sliders with the onion rings. The sliders cruised by me a few times and they looked better than my burger!
Maybe I won’t visit Plan B anytime soon, but at some point I know I’ll be back. Do they care? I’m really not sure.
Plan B Burger Bar
230 Tresser Blvd. (Stamford Town Center)
Stamford, CT 06901
(203) 964-8353

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