Notorious Burgers in Scottsdale: Happy Hour Report Card
The Spot: Notorious Burgers
Heather Hoch Notorious Burgers creatively pairs shots and mini-cocktails with their happy hour offerings.
8777 North Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale
The Hours: Happy Hour is offered daily from 3 until 7 p.m.
Along with sister restaurant Cuttlefish, Notorious Burgers is a recent addition to the Scottsdale dining scene, having been open only four months. There seems to be a partially hashed-out speakeasy vibe, thus the Notorious in the name, but overall, the dark wood bar, booths, and tables just seem standard. Instead, the bar area, which has a reddish glow due to underlighting emanating from the bar, feels more like a sports bar with a bootlegging veneer. There's nothing really wrong with the ambiance at Notorious, it just feels inauthentic.
Heather Hoch A "Tijuana dog" is like a Sonoran dog, but with fried jalapeños and an optional shot of Patron.
Here's where things get interesting at Notorious. Rather than slapping discounts on menu items (as most places do for happy hour), Notorious offers a completely unique menu to happy hour. To top it off, each item comes with a suggested discounted shot pairing. Sure, it's weird, but it is a refreshing change from the happy hour norm. Starting with a combo of beer-battered cheese curds and a Jameson pickleback for a total of $10, we were reasonably pleased with both the squeaky fried cheese curds, the three dipping sauces, and the accompanying shot.
The B.I.G. sliders ($8), modeled after the on-menu burger of the same name and paired with a Maker's Mark cocktail for $4 more, had a fantastically sharp and tangy cave-aged cheddar, and the bun was soft and lightly sweet. However, the menu promised applewood-smoked bacon on the sliders, but ours arrived without it. Never promise bacon that you can't deliver. In a final attempt to get a bacon fix, we tried the Tijuana dog, essentially a $7 Sonoran dog with fried jalapeños and chipotle mayo. The bacon-cradled but not -wrapped dog was a gut bomb, especially when paired with the $3 shot of Patron.