Harlem Shake does everything Johnny Rockets and Shake Shack do, but better. It’s an ideal burger, shake, and beer situation, with a little Caribbean flavor thrown into the mix. The owners all grew up in Harlem, do their best to hire from within the community, and donate part of their profits to tons local charities and initiatives, like Harlem Business Alliance, Harlem Children’s Zone, Harlem EatUp!, and so many more. They’re not cutting corners here either. They’re using the good stuff in terms of ingredients; Pat LaFrieda meats in their burgers and Blue Marble ice cream in their shakes.
The burgers here are certainly unique. Harlem Shake takes a thin, double patty route. Their jerk sauce is excellent, and can be taken advantage of in the form of a chicken sandwich, hot dog, or fries. And, as you would expect, the shakes are on point. They’ve also got solid beers on tap and serve Mexican Coke. Those little touches go a long way.
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Harlem Classic Burger with Cheese
A pair of thinly smashed custom blend sirloin patties lathered with American cheese, onions, pickles, and special sauce on a soft potato bun. These burgers have a meaty flavor, and remind us of an elevated, double-stacked from Wendy’s in the best of ways. You can freestyle on your burger too, adding anything from a loosie (extra patty), to fried pork rinds, to pickled cherry pepper-bacon relish. Also, both veggie and turkey burgers are available, which you can customize however you want, or swap out with the beef burgers on the menu.
Barbecue Onion Burger
This is the one to get. We thoroughly enjoyed this burger. Double patties with grilled onions pressed into the meat and topped with cheese, pickles, and homemade BBQ sauce. A very sloppy home run.
Jerk Chicken Sandwich
If you’re into a Jamaican-style jerk sauce, this is your move. The crispy sandwich comes on a soft potato bun with spicy Caribbean slaw & jerk mayo.
This one might've weighed us down for a couple of hours, and that’s something to celebrate. A deep-fried bacon-wrapped dog, with pickled cherry pepper-bacon relish, chipotle mayo, and onions. It’s one of the best things we tried here. Do it.
Classic Patty Melt
We haven’t tried anything from the melts/grilled cheese section, but it’s worth noting that all kinds of melted cheese sandwich options exist on the menu and our guess is they’re probably pretty damn good.
Milkshakes made with Brooklyn’s very special Blue Marble ice cream are right up our alley, and the namesake “Harlem” shake is particularly awesome. It’s a red velvet style concoction, but it’s not overly overwhelming in the red velvet flavor department. There’s just a hint of sweet velvet in the predominantly vanilla shake. So good.