The Experience: Elmira Township houses a population of just 1,598 people and just one restaurant – the Railside Bar & Grill. Railside is a popular snowmobiler destination in the winter season, and the slogan states that “You owe it to yourself to stop by, have a beer, enjoy a great meal, and make some new friends.” That certainly evokes a certain down-home feel one might expect from such a small community. For as long as I can remember, every time I drove past the marquee always had something about a “Potato Burger,” and I was finally able to align the stars right to make it to this establishment.
Burger Ordered: Elmira Potato Burger
The Taste: I admit that I was very excited to try this burger. It’s a mixture of ground beef and shredded potatoes, seasonings, and cheddar, served either grilled with cheddar and horsey sauce or crispy beer-battered and deep fried, on a pretzel roll. I opted for the grilled version, with an eye to come back on another visit for the deep fried variation. I’m a big fan of pretzel rolls, and that’s not all this burger did right. Because of the special beef and potato mix, they were not able to cook to any specifications, which had me a little worried. All fears were quickly dashed when I took my first bite, and realized that they know what they’re doing with this burger. The amount of potatoes in the mixture is just enough to feel and taste different without feeling gimmicky, and the horsey sauce added a really nice bite. The homemade fries on the side were also a real treat.
The Verdict: Railside Bar & Grill offers up a couple of other unique burgers (such as a Reuben Burger and a “Train Wreck” – chili, onion rings, jalapenos, and pepper jack cheese) that make it a bit of a rarity in my area. The Elmira Potato Burger was quite excellent, and one I heartily recommend.
Railside Bar & Grill is located at 8805 Michigan 32 in Elmira, Michigan