Food Review: Burgers and Shamrock Shakes


Dog Lane Café in Storrs Center provides a relaxed atmosphere while serving up coffee sandwiches and other foods, such as the “Dog House burger.” (Photo courtesy of Dog Lane Café)

Mouthwatering burger makes Dog Lane Café special

Here’s something that may catch your eye: the best burger at UConn isn’t found at Mooyah or Geno’s or the True Blue Tavern, although each restaurant has its own great burgers. And it is definitely not in the school dining halls where the “blended burger” has become a mainstay. No, the best burger at UConn is actually found at Dog Lane Café in Storrs Center, and it’s called the Dog House burger.

The best way I can describe the Dog House burger is that it was truly a perfect mesh of flavor and texture in all the right proportions. Topped with cheddar cheese, Applewood smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato and caramelized onions, the Dog House burger goes for a price of $12.00 including tax, since Dog Lane Café incorporates tax into each price on their menu. On the side, you can get spicy ketchup sauce along with a pickle and a bag of Deep River chips.

To cost that much, a burger has to be pretty darn good, and this burger was on a whole other level. Everything about it was perfect. It was cooked splendidly and kept all the burger’s juice and flavor while adding the just the right amount of crisp for the texture. The bacon was perfectly crispy as well, enhancing the burger with that smoky flavor. The Dog House burger also had the right amount of lettuce and tomato, which was extremely refreshing. Some places put far too much on their burgers, which can overpower the taste of the beef, while others don’t put enough.

The best part of the Dog House burger, however, was unquestionably the caramelized onions. I can’t say enough about the kind of flavor that those caramelized onions added to this burger. They managed to bring out all the right sensations that you should taste when having a burger. It was as close to perfect as I’ve tasted in a burger in a long, long time. And yes, this is without a doubt a five-star review.

I also got Dog Lane’s strawberry-banana smoothie with chia seeds, honey and yogurt which goes for $5.50. The smoothie had a good consistency and wasn’t too thick as some smoothies can be, nor was it too liquidy. It also tasted great and had a good blend of strawberry and banana rather than leaning more towards the flavor of one of the two fruits. I would say it compares in size to a Freshens medium smoothie, but tastes much better for an extra dollar, which I think is worth it. I give the strawberry-banana smoothie 3.5 out of five stars.

Shamrock Shakes are back at McDonald’s

(Jonathan Kearns/Creative Commons Flickr)

The once-a-year, limited time offer at McDonald’s is back. Yes, the Shamrock Shake that so many people crave every March is here again and is offered in multiple flavors including the original minty Shamrock Shake, the chocolate Shamrock Shake, the chocolate chip frappe Shamrock Shake and the mocha Shamrock Shake. All are topped with whipped cream, green sprinkles and a cherry.

I personally had never tried the Shamrock Shake for myself until this past Sunday. I know, it’s hard to believe after all these years. When I finally decided to get one, I wanted the chocolate chip frappe version, but going through the drive-thru they accidentally gave me the chocolate Shamrock Shake instead. Not the best start to my first Shamrock Shake experience. Nevertheless, I still tried it out and honestly, I wasn’t that impressed.

I’m a big fan of that mint chocolate flavor that you get with Thin Mints, York peppermint patties and mint chocolate chip ice cream. So with all the rave reviews I had heard prior to drinking the Shamrock Shake, I had expected it would be something incredible like that. While it wasn’t horrible by any means, the chocolate Shamrock Shake wasn’t great either. I’d recommend getting it, because it’s a yearly thing and only $2.50 for a small so why not? But it’s definitely not worth raving about, so I’ll give it 2.5 out of five stars.

Chris Hanna is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at He tweets @realchrishanna.

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