As if part-human-part-restaurant-building-robot Ford Fry doesn’t have enough to do, he’s now working with Shake Shack to create a one-day burger special, available next month on Saturday, September 19. In a brief phone interview, Fry said that the New York-based chain reached out to him, and that he’s been working on the burger for the last two months. Although he couldn’t disclose too many details, he did mention working with Shake Shack’s meat grinder. “When it’s a double patty that’s cooked all the way, I want to see the texture of the meat and to have a crispness, like that fried beef crunch,” he said. “That’s the goal.”
The burger behemoth has a history of collaborating with local talent. The current Atlanta menu features a vanilla custard concrete blended with pecan pie from H&F Bread Co., as well as a campfire s’mores concrete using dark chocolate from Cacao Atlanta Chocolate Co. And earlier this week, the Buckhead outpost commissioned and hung a painting from local SCAD student Jean-Pierre Villafañe.
“Chef Fry is one of Atlanta’s most celebrated culinary hometown heroes with a flair for soulful, downright delicious cooking, and we’re honored to team up with him to bring this incredible burger to our Buckhead Shack,” Shake Shack said in a statement.
Considering the number of new projects that Fry is currently juggling (the newly-opened Marcel; his Houston restaurant, State of Grace; a spinoff of the Optimist in Inman Quarter; a third outpost of his twin Tex Mex joints The El Felix and Superica; and a bar in the Four Seasons Atlanta), he admits that his schedule is a bit more than packed. “Everything is landing about the same time, but it’s good for me. This is going to either teach me to slow down or just how to handle it. “