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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Burgers, American
Counter service

Sun–Thu 11:00am–9:00pm
Fri–Sat 11:00am–10:00pm

Features Kid-friendly, live music, outdoor dining, veg-friendly, Wi-Fi
Bar Beer, wine
Credit cards Visa, MC


South Lamar
2901 S. Lamar Blvd.
Austin, TX
(512) 707-8704

5620 Burnet Rd.
Austin, TX
(512) 524-1212
Phil’s Ice House
Delicious sweet-bunned burgers right next to delicious sweet ice cream

What’s not to love, between the kid-friendly playgrounds, the fun neon signs, and photobooths? Oh yeah, and the killer burgers? You can choose from a menu of neighborhood-named burgers, or build your own from a sizeable but pretty conventional range of ingredients, also with veggie and chicken patty options. Sweet potato fries tend to outshine the bland regular fries; there’s no upcharge to substitute, so go for it.

The overall success of a Phil’s burger owes largely to the bun, which reminds us of a fluffy Hawaiian bread. Its sweetness contrasts the other flavors, giving depth and definition to grilled onions, cheddar or blue cheese, and chipotle or barbecue sauce. Patties are juicy, beefy, and charred to inspire a primitive lust in even the most delicate soul. The few non-burger options are also good, including a butterflied-and-grilled foot-long hot dog bathed in chili that’s a far cry from the cheap goo you find elsewhere. The mini sampler is a great way to try a few different versions, but to really capture the burger’s greatness, we recommend multiple, full-sized visits.

In addition to sodas and beer (Live Oak on tap), there are a few glasses of cursory Texas wine. Shakes are made with Amy’s Mexican Vanilla, chocolate, and fresh strawberries, but they’re underwhelming compared to the ice cream next door. Save the calories for the “crush’ns.”

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