44 Memories….Dance Class

iStock_000022805834XSmall.jpgAlong my trip down memory lane, I’ve realized that there are some things that I really miss. And one of those things is dancing. When you are the parent of a teen or tween, if you attempt to dance in front of them, they will cringe, cover their eyes and beg you to stop. And so, I’ve learned that some of the things I used to love to do without anyone criticizing me (singing and dancing) has been temporarily banned by my children. And to be completely honest, I am not happy about it.
While I’ve always managed to find an outlet for my singing (a solo car ride from Westchester to Manhattan works wonders), unfortunately, my dancing card hasn’t been punched in a very long time. That is, until this week.
As I was waiting to pick up my son from Hebrew school, I ran into another mom and the topic of exercise came up. While I lamented how much I hate going to the gym, she began to sing the praises of Jazzercise. Yes, Jazzercise — that same dance company that’s been in business since the 80’s. While I never did take a Jazzercise class during its heyday, I was pretty hooked on Hip Hop classes and really miss not having that as an option at my gym. I know people rave about Zumba, but between the class never being available at a time that works in my schedule and the fact that I’m not the biggest fan of Latin dancing (I am a bit of a klutz and can never master those steps), there’s just something about it that just doesn’t grab me.
But Jazzercise on the other hand? As my friend told me more about her class, I told her I was up for giving it a try. So two days later, I was in her car on the way to dance class. And I was psyched. When we arrived, we met a lovely woman who shared how she’s lost more than 28 pounds doing a combination of Jazzercise and Weight Watchers.
Next, I met the instructor, who was absolutely lovely and then I was introduced to another group of women and men who couldn’t have been nicer. At that moment, as the group welcomed me with open arms to their Jazzercise family, I felt like I finally found my people! Once the class started, I was totally able to keep up and managed to break a sweat without completely losing my breath and my patience. But the best part of all – the class was fun and I finally got to dance again!
Today, I gave Jazzercise in Manhattan a try while my daughter took a class at FIT and had the best time again. I even ran into an old colleague who I used to love working with and we caught up on lost time. I also met another super friendly woman who knew everyone in the class and even asked if I planned to come back next week. Of course, I told her I’d absolutely be back.
It’s only taken 15 years, but I am so happy to have finally found an exercise routine I absolutely love. What a concept. Hopefully it’ll help me shed some weight and get me back in top shape. There’s nothing like taking a trip down memory lane to make you realize that you should never cut the things you love out of your life…even if it embarrasses your kids.

6 Steps to Finding the Right College Fit

Written by Diana Simeon, Your Teen Magazine
Deciding where to apply to college can feel stressful and confusing. With so many great options, how can students find the right one?
1. Getting Started
Martha O’Connell, Executive Director of Colleges That Change Lives, says, “Students should begin their search by examining themselves and their reasons for going to college.” O’Connell suggests students honestly assess themselves to determine what their strengths, weaknesses and abilities are and what kind of learning community they want to be a part of.
Aaron Greene, founder of College Liftoff, says there are four main criteria that students need to examine when assessing a college: academic reputation, career development reputation, financial considerations and whether the school is a good fit.
Greene cautions students not to let one component overshadow the other three. “Sometimes students fall immediately in love with a school, and the fit is good.
But, if it does not meet a student’s financial needs, it is probably not the right choice.”
2. Evaluating Schools
Students and parents should approach a college search the same way they would approach buying a home.
Greene says, “Students need to do their research and not be afraid to ask tough questions, such as ‘What kind of internships are offered?’ and ‘What are the job placement statistics?’ Don’t rely on a school’s reputation alone. A school may offer many majors but only really excel in some of them.”
The school’s location, size and student life are also important factors to consider.
3. Keeping Options Open
College admissions can seem random, and sometimes, even an ideal candidate for a particular school will not get accepted.
Maureen Tillman, psychotherapist and founder of College with Confidence, advises parents, “Never talk about one school as perfect during this process. Look at each school your child is applying to and explore all the positives (as well as negatives), helping them to see that there is not just one school for them.”
4. Visiting Colleges
College visits are a key part of determining whether a school is a good match. School-sponsored tours are good, but only as a starting point.
“Don’t be afraid to go off the beaten path and walk around on your own, unsupervised and unchaperoned. It’s important to take the time to get a feel for the campus and its culture or personality,” says Robin Mamet, co-author of College Admission: From Application to Acceptance, Step by Step.
Keep an open mind on college visits. Ally Weissenberg, a high school senior, initially thought she wanted to attend a very big university. But on her tour, the school felt impersonal, and she felt lost. She discussed her feelings with her counselor, who suggested a smaller school.
“When I visited Tulane University, I liked the smaller size,” Weissenberg says. “The students looked happy, and the campus seemed friendly and welcoming. Walking around, I could picture myself being friends with the students I saw.”
5. Keeping the Rankings in Check
Many students and parents feel pressured to pick a school based on prestige and rankings. Rebecca Bergman, a high school senior, says, “College rankings definitely played a role in my decision making. I applied early decision to an Ivy League school because I felt I should reach a little higher. But, that school was more of a city school and not what I really wanted. Luckily, I was not accepted and will be attending my true first choice school in the fall.”
Bergman’s feelings are not uncommon. O’Connell, says, “We live in a brand-name society. Many parents want to ride around town with a certain college bumper sticker. But, choosing a college because of where it ranks on a list does not take into account who you are and who you want to become.”
6. Making it Work
“I wish that students would approach the college search with a greater appreciation for the long view of education,” O’Connell says. “It is not about the race to the end, but instead what you learn from each step in the journey to get there.”
Regardless of what school a student winds up attending, it is up to them to make their college experience the best it can be. Tillman says, “As with all things in life, in the end, it is what you make of the opportunity.”
To read the entire article and check out more great articles for parents raising teens, visit Your Teen Magazine.

Who Knew Roku?

Roku-3-with-Headphones.jpgIf you’ve been reading my blog for awhile now, you’ve probably figured out two things about me. I’m always dieting and I’m a couch potato. Which means even though I truly want to be fit and thin, it’s pretty hard to do when your ultimate goal at the end of the night is to curl up on the couch with your husband and kids so you can watch a movie that everyone will love (or maybe my daughter and I will love). And that brings me dear readers, to Roku.
Recently, I was asked if I’d be interested in giving Roku 3 a try. If you’ve never heard of Roku, then you don’t know what you’re missing. Roku is a video streaming device that enables you to choose the movies and TV shows that you want to see when you want to see them. And trust me, while I am a cable subscriber and we frequently hit channel 500 to find a movie we can play on demand, the selection pales in comparison to the offerings you can get on Roku. Over 150,000 titles are available at any given time. Which means in most instances, any movie that you have loved in your life (“Steel Magnolias,” “Sleepless in Seattle,” “St. Elmo’s Fire”…yes I am trapped in the 80’s and 90’s) can potentially all be found on Roku.
But wait, there’s more. Now I feel like a game show host. Not only are there movies, TV shows and sporting events to be watched, there’s also games too like Angry Birds Space, Downhill Bowling, Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune and Suduko. And, if you are a stalker obsessed with your friend’s Facebook photos and videos, you can see them right through your Roku too. Here’s the best part — a Roku 3 box is $99 and it gives you access to over 1000 channels. Can anyone say Couch Potato Heaven??? While Roku doesn’t charge a monthly fee for their services, you can choose from a host of services like Redbox Instant from Verizon where you can instantly stream great movies 24/7…although I wouldn’t recommend watching that much television unless you land a job where you’re paid to watch and write about the shows and movies you love all the time.
So how do you get your hands on a Roku 3 box? Simple – just visit their website for additional details. Just as the leaves are changing and that all too familiar fall chill is in the air, get ready to grab that cozy blanket, curl up on the couch and watch what you want all the time!
Disclosure: I was given a Roku 3 to try out for this review. However, all opinions (especially my love of classic 80’s and 90’s movies) are strictly my own.


Written by Role Mommy Contributor, Eric Ruhalter

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What’s your kid going to be for Halloween this year? I’m not saying. Because it’s going to change at least 4 more times before it’s final. So I’m just ignoring them for another week. Then they have to TRULY commit, I make them swear with a spit handshake, to a costume that they agree to sport for this annum’s Halloween festivities.
And I’ll make it! With my own two hands, I’ll make that costume. Whatever it is they want to be. And I’ll make it out of things I find around the house. And duct tape. Lots and lots of duct tape.
Last year my daughter wanted to be Barbie. She wanted to look juuuust like the doll she had. A pristine, beautiful, perfectly appointed, blonde Barbie with high cheek bones and sparkly eyes. So I duct taped the doll to her face. Barbie! Wassup!?
My son? He wanted to be a pencil. That was easy. Hold pencil touching nose and forehead. Duct tape. BAM! Pencil!
This year my oldest son is 14. He kind of knows my game. (Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me 14 times shame on me.) He told me he didn’t want me to bother investing my valuable time in any costume fabrication for him. He just wants to wear one of those full body stockings – The suit that covers you head to toe in one solid color. You can buy them online for 24.99. But I did it at home for just 3 rolls of duct tape. BOOYEAH!!
Yeah. Halloween’s a whoppin’ fun time. Come visit us. We’ve got top shelf candy! Though I may throw some old batteries in your bag too. I don’t know how else to get rid of them! But do stop by! Leaky candy bags and torn costumes repaired while you wait. Duct tape!*
(*Please note: No duct tape was actually applied to any children. This fictitious account is low-brow allegory intended to depict some of the inherent mild frustrations affiliated with the annual pagan ritual of Halloween.)
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Eric Ruhalter lives in Morristown, NJ with his wife and 3 kids. Eric is the author of the parenting humor book: “Phrazzlers: Funny New Words to Describe the Wild World of Parenting.” See funny videos and slideshows at www.Phrazzlers.com

Losing Patience

photo (34).JPGIt’s Tuesday and that means I’m in a ranting state of mind. Not that I have much to complain about but this week, one thing does stand out. You see, about two weeks ago, I woke up to find that my eyelid was surprisingly dry. No matter what ointment I tried to apply to it, it just wouldn’t heal. And while any sane individual would make an appointment at the dermatologist, I just continued to self medicate.
First I used some fancy Chanel sample for eyes that burned my eyelid upon application and pretty much did nothing.
Next, I used Cetaphil moisturizer but again, no luck.
I also spread some Aquaphor, a Vitamin E stick and more eye cream on it and that’s when my scaly eyelid revolted. This past Saturday, while my husband and I returned from a Bar Mitzvah service, he glanced over at me and gave me this weird look.
“What happened to your eye?”
You know something is wrong when your husband gets alarmed looking at your face. And so, I pulled down the visor, flipped open the mirror and I looked like Woogie from “Something About Mary.” Okay – maybe not that bad but for anyone who saw the classic comedy, Woogie’s eye starts getting puffy and red with boils on it after he is reunited with Mary — the girl he stalked after she broke up with him in high school. But I digress.
As I kept rubbing my eye (not a good thing to do when it’s already in bad shape), we got back to my house and I showed my mom my eye and she became concerned. And trust me, if my mom gets concerned about me, then something is wrong because she’s usually not an alarmist. As I spent the day trying out another batch of ointments on my eye, my family convinced me to go to a walk in clinic if it didn’t get better.
But I didn’t.
Instead, I called the dermatologist the next day and found out she couldn’t fit me in until October 28. And it’s only October 8! So I did the next best thing. Tried to diagnose myself on Web MD and when it came back that I probably have eczema or an allergic reaction, I decided I could handle a little dryness and spare myself a clinic visit. I did take the site’s advice and attempted to put hydrocortisone on my eye and while it did seem to heal pretty quickly, it also burned when I applied it, so I decided to discontinue use before my eyelid started to shrivel up.
So I am back to using Aquaphor and you know what? It seems to be working. Hopefully, this dry eyelid patch will go away on its own because honestly, I am losing patience for doctors.

MIA: Mom is Away

Written by Role Mommy contributor, Danielle Feigenbaum
A few months ago I received a wedding invitation from a close family friend. The wedding was going to be in Florida. I am a big fan of the destination wedding, but with two kids and financial restraints, it’s not always easy to swing it. I really wanted to go. I wanted to spend time with my parents, celebrate with a friend who is like a brother to me, but most of all – I wanted to get AWAY.
I love my kids and my husband and blah blah, but let’s be real… we ALL need a mom-time-out in order to keep our sanity and recharge our batteries. It used to be taboo to be honest about wanting to get the hell out of dodge (I still don’t think my mom gets it – she would never have left us or my dad for any period of time). First, I spoke to my husband about it… he was all for me going, totally supportive, he rocks! Next I found reasonable flights and used points to fly from NY to Miami. I booked my room at the hotel where the wedding was going to take place since they had a good wedding rate. I organized play dates and help with the kids Friday after school and then my hubby was on duty for the weekend. Have I mentioned that my husband rocks? I was all set.
At the kid’s school pick up last week, when I told my mom friends I was going to Miami for a wedding, by MYSELF, they couldn’t believe it. I’m pretty sure any of them would have traded places with me.
So last Friday I went to the airport and breezed through security (it’s just so much easier without the kids and all the stuff!) Boarded the plane, took a deep breath, sat back and relaxed. It was an amazing feeling. You all know how the story goes… from morning till night you are on a schedule… getting kids up, lunches packed, off to school, cleaning up, work, errands, endless array of after school activities, carpools, play dates, homework, cook dinner, laundry… I’m tired. I’m not looking for sympathy here, I understand that this is life and I love my life – but arriving at the gorgeous Viceroy Hotel in Miami, I was happy to escape my life for a couple of days.
IMG_20131004_163936.jpg I loved the hotel, my room was amazing (I think the bathroom was bigger than my bedroom at home) and the pool was fantastic. I had nobody to look after but myself and it was lovely. I spent time just lying on the bed watching mindless television, had a blast at the beach BBQ rehearsal dinner (yes, I will have a margarita, thank you). On Saturday I was able to have a leisurely lunch with my college roommate who lives in Florida and I haven’t seen in almost four years. Then it was a tough afternoon relaxing by the pool. Getting ready for the wedding slowly without anyone pulling on me or calling out “mom mom mom mom” was also a treat! The wedding was a blast and I was so happy I was able to make the trip down to celebrate with my old friend and get a little R & R in at the same time.
Of course Monday morning came too fast and life went back to normal, but I was ready to take on whatever came my way. I highly recommend you take a parent-time-out when you can. If you can escape for a day or a weekend by yourself, with some friends or your spouse, do it. You will love every minute and appreciate the quiet, but you will also be so excited to get home to your little rug rats and squeeze them tight.

Take Back the Kitchen: Alma’s Fennel Potato Soup

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We may try to do our best to eat vegetables in season but what happens when we run out of interesting ideas? That’s what google is for! I had a bunch of fennel from my CSA (Community Supported Agriculture ) Box and when I looked on line for interesting recipes, I found a fennel soup that incorporated a bunch of other vegetables I had in the house. I took short cuts for the broth and voila! Enjoy this Fall soup that will be sure to please (I ate it for three days straight for lunch).
Roasted Fennel Potato Soup:

One very large bulb of fennel, chopped, including stems (fronds can go in the stock if you like)
3 large carrots, ends trimmed off and discarded, thinly sliced into quarter sized pieces
6 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
one quart (8 cups) chicken broth or vegetable broth if you like
olive oil for drizzling
1/2-1 tsp onion powder or more
1 tsp salt, more to taste
pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 450 degrees
While the oven is heating, start steaming the peeled, chopped potatoes until tender, about 20 minutes or so on the stove top (test with a fork for doneness) and set aside to cool
Next, take a large baking sheet, cover with parchment paper and lay out all the chopped fennel and carrots on it
Drizzle the fennel and carrots with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and roast for about 20 minutes until tender
Remove from the oven and set aside
Now, in a large pot, heat up the broth with the washed fronds of the fennel and when it starts to bubble, add in all the roasted and steamed vegetables and let simmer for about 15-20 minutes
With a hand blender or a food processor, puree the soup until creamy
Serve hot with some crusty bread. Yum!
For more great recipes, visit http://takebackthekitchen.com/

Flashback Friday…44 Memories: Why I Hate Jogging

iStock_000020459006Small.jpgI hate jogging.
There I said it. Despite the fact that I know that jogging can thin out your butt and your thighs within a matter of days, it’s one of those sports (is jogging a sport?) that I’ve always dreaded. And I think the reason why I hate it so much is because of my fourth grade gym teacher.
Here’s the sad thing. I don’t even remember his name anymore. But I remember exactly what he looked like — he was short with wiry black and gray hair, black rimmed glasses and he wore sweat suits to school every day. He was actually a really funny gym teacher and made many of us laugh while we played dodge ball or attempted to climb ropes. But it was jogging that pretty much put me over the edge.
At the time, I was pretty chubby. In fact, that was the year that the boys started to tease me. A kid named Keith (yes, I remember his name) and his friend Larry (yes, I’ll never forget him too), decided it was funny to start calling me Stubby Beth. And that name pierced through my heart like a dagger. At the time, I didn’t think about how gym class could help me shed pounds — it was just another reminder that when we all slipped on our shorts and t-shirts, the boys had their chance to tease me. And tease me, they did.
But let’s get back to my gym teacher. Every day when we’d start class, he’d line all of us up and then make us jog around the gym. While we jogged, he’d make us recite this poem:
Jog, jog, jog
Mr. Frog
Move your hands, move your feet,
Not too fast, not too slow
Jog, jog, jog
Mr. Frog
Whenever I’d come rounding a corner and my gym teacher saw me, he made fun of my technique. Here was one of my favorite lines:
“You look like you’re milking a cow.”
And yes, while I did in fact look like I was milking a cow, there were never any words of encouragement from our sarcastic gym teacher. Just insults and jokes that he thought would encourage us to run faster, keep our arms in place and get through class without passing out.
I somehow made it through that class but when all was said and done, I wound up hating jogging and all that it stood for.
I hated that I was winded every time I jogged one lap around the gym.
I hated that my gym teacher made fun of me whenever I passed him by.
I hate the fact that after 30 years and change, I still remember that stupid poem but can’t remember my teacher’s name.
And I hate the fact that I still remember the names of the kids who teased me and made me feel fat.
Which brings me to today. Today I started jogging again. Yes – jogging. I actually jogged for three songs on my iPhone. Approximately 12 minutes of jogging before I wanted to pass out or throw up.
I know jogging is hard. But I know that if I can keep with it, my thighs will thin down again. But that’s the key – keeping with it. I know no one will ever call me Stubby Beth again and no mean gym teacher is going to critique my running skills but every time I pick up my pace on the treadmill, I am instantly transported to that gym with that teacher and those boys.
And that dear readers is why I hate jogging. But despite my ill will toward running, I will keep trying. For the sake of my thighs and the sake of my butt – I will run like the wind and hopefully this time around, no one will think I’m milking a cow.

10 Things Every Girl in Her 20s Should Own

Hello everyone, Role Mommy intern here! My time at Role Mommy is sadly coming to an end, as I enter the real world on Monday and start my first full-time job at Macy’s (oh my god!). I’m slightly terrified but also really excited to start this new chapter in my life.
Upon my departure, here’s my final post for Role Mommy: 10 Things Every Girl in Her 20s Should Own. I know most of you reading this probably feel this doesn’t apply to you, but I promise that you can pass this information down to your daughters one day or use it as a gift buying guide for any 20-something you may know this holiday season!
10) External Hard Drive
This one really applies to almost everyone, but especially as a 21 year old, I would be screwed if my computer crashed. I’ve been lucky not to have this happen yet (my Mac Book Pro is going 5 years strong), but just in case, I’ve invested in an external hard drive. I back it up maybe once a month, but it’s reassuring to know that I won’t lose my entire music collection, my resume, and every picture I took in college if my computer decides to give up on life one day.
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9) A Nice Black Suit
It’s always better to be overdressed for a job or grad school interview than to be underdressed. I know suits can be expensive, so I suggest shopping at an outlet store to find a great deal! Also, you don’t have to buy the pieces together. I purchased a black blazer from the Ann Taylor outlet and a pair of nice black dress pants from Banana Republic, which definitely helped with the cost. Not only will these pieces come in handy for an interview, they’re also great staple pieces to mix and match with other tops and bottoms once you finally land the job!
8) Dry Shampoo
I went to the University of Miami, so to deal with the humidity, I started getting keratin treatments on my hair to avoid becoming a frizzy mess. The treatment was great, but the downside was my hair started to get greasy. We all been told not to wash our hair everyday, but I didn’t know what to do in between washes. When I came home one year for winter break, my stylist finally suggested using dry shampoo and it has been a life saver!! I use Suave’s product, which costs less than $3 and smells great. Not only does it take the grease away but it gives my hair an extra lift on days where I’m feeling a little bit lazy and don’t want to spend the time styling it.
7) Store Credit Card
I recently tried to apply for a credit card from my bank so I could start building credit now and be in a good place in a few years when I want to buy a house or an apartment. The bank rejected me because I had no credit which brought me to a conundrum…how do I build credit if no one will give me a credit card because I have no credit? So I decided to sign up for a Macy’s credit card (I swear I’m not plugging my new employer- I actually got the credit card way before I scored my interview!). I buy a small purchase every month and pay it off in full. Now I know it’s really easy to get carried away, but if you’re fiscally responsible a store credit card to your favorite department store is a great place to start! Plus they’ll send you awesome discounts and coupons.
6) A Go-To Neutral Lip Gloss
I used to hate lip gloss. I always thought it was sticky and heavy and too shiny. Then one day, I found the best neutral lip gloss from Mac called “Deelight” and I am now obsessed! Not only does it feel great on my lips, it literally goes with anything! No matter what outfit I’m wearing or how I decided to do the rest of my makeup, “Deelight” always looks good. Obviously, my color may not be your color, but a good neutral lip gloss is the perfect way to add a little glam into every occasion without stressing over your makeup routine.
5) A White T-Shirt
This is pretty obvious, but a white t-shirt is an essential staple to any woman’s wardrobe. Pair it with your favorite cardigan for a comfier look or a pair of colorful skinny jeans or heels for when you’re going out. I bought my favorite white tee while I was in Europe this summer at a store called Vero Moda (I thought I was buying from a cool European brand but apparently they have stores in Europe and Asia too…whomp whomp). The fabric is such a soft jersey material and the fit is loose enough to be comfortable but tight enough to still feel feminine. The best part, it only cost 8 Euro (about $11)!
4) Statement Necklace
Statement necklaces are totally on trend right now, and are a great way to jazz up your outfit and stand out! For some reason, I’m always wearing black, so I love wearing big necklaces to bring in a pop of color (they’re also great to wear with your white t-shirt!) There’s also no need to spend a lot of money on statement necklaces…I’ve gotten a ton of great pieces from Forever 21 and H&M!
3) E-Reader
Whether it’s a Kindle, an iPad, or a Nook, an E-reader is an essential for any 20-something! They’re lightweight, easy to carry, and great for airplanes, commuting to work, and just reading on your own time. Even if you’re not big on books, most apps can be downloaded onto an E-reader, so you can also you to read magazines, watch movies, and play games on them. I love my Kindle Fire…it was the perfect college graduation present!
2) Perfume Rollerball
Rollerballs are a must have! You can easily throw them in your purse or travel with them in a carry-on when you travel. Plus, they’re cheaper than the full bottle alternative, so instead of investing in one perfume, you can switch your daily scent and buy a few different rollerballs. I bought a rollerball of Flowerbomb by Viktor and Rolf for $29, instead of $80 for the smallest bottle, and I love using it to switch things up from my normal Marc Jacobs routine.
1) At Least One DVD Collection of Your Favorite TV Show
Lastly, it is essential for every girl in her 20s to own a season of a good television show. There’s nothing better than spending a day relaxing on your couch watching a TV marathon. Although I haven’t watched the newer episodes, popping in the DVDs for the first three seasons of Grey’s Anatomy will automatically make for a good day. I also can’t tell you how many times I’ve rewatched the third season of How I Met Your Mother, or borrowed a disc from my roommate’s Sex and The City box collection. We all need a break once in a while, and owning a TV DVD collection is the key to the perfect lazy day!

My Smashing Time at Smashburger!

My family and I have been huge fans of Smashburger since they first opened their doors in Westchester a little over a year ago, so I was more than excited when I got invited to a private SmashBurger tasting at their newest location in White Plains! smashburger-logo.jpg
Smashburger is the nation’s fastest growing better burger concept. The secret to their success is the “smash,” starting with 100% fresh, never frozen Angus Beef that is literally smashed on a 400 degree flat grill to sear in the the juicy flavor. To further the “better burger” experience, the delicious hamburgers are served on toasted artisan buns and topped with a selection of the freshest produce, real cheeses, and highest-quality condiments.
smashburger.jpgWe got to try 7 burgers from their tasting menu, including the Classic Smash, the Truffle Mushroom Swiss Burger, the Spicy Veggie Black Bean, and the Avocado Chicken Club. They also had a delicious regional burger, an exclusive recipe that represents the unique flavors of New York. The New Yorker burger had cheddar cheese, garlic grilled onions, spinach, tomato, and peppercorn garlic aioli all on a brioche bun and it was absolutely delicious!!! The Smashburger representative also told us about the regional Brooklyn burger with grilled pastrami, aged Swiss, pickles, onion and yellow mustard on a pretzel bun. As a native Brooklynite, I begged them to have this available in Westchester! But if not, I guess I’m going to have to make a road trip out to Brooklyn soon to try it…my mouth is watering just thinking about it!
The burgers weren’t the only delicious thing on the menu. The SmashFries, which are tossed with rosemary, olive oil, and garlic were heavenly. I seriously could not stop eating them. Their salads also looked amazing and came in a massive bowl that could probably feed three people, although to be honest, I was too full from the burgers and the SmashFries to try them. But I did manage to save room for their milkshakes. The Oreo milkshake was very good, but the Peanut Butter and Jelly, a strawberry milkshake with nutterbutters, was AMAZING and easily the highlight of the tasting!!milkshakes.jpeg
Although the quality of their burgers are unparalleled, SmashBurger’s customer service really stands out in my book. The majority of the time when I go to a fast food restaurant, the staff look like they’d rather be doing anything else in the world but taking my order, but SmashBurger’s staff is friendly, polite, and fast on their feet. There was almost a 1:1 ratio of staff to customers which definitely contributed to my positive experience at the tasting, but the customer service has been exceptional every time I’ve gone to a Smashburger even when it wasn’t for an exclusive event. I can’t say that about any other fast food restaurant!
If you haven’t gone already, I would definitely recommend taking the family out for a meal at Smashburger as soon as possible! Check out their website for more information about their menu and to find a location near you.