Burton’s Grill is basically a culinary oasis, a paradise destination in the DC Suburbs for anyone who has any type of dietary restrictions and isn’t trying to make the trek into the city. The restaurant is sort of a newbie in the restaurant scene, but you would never know by dining there. My meal was seamless, and it appears that Burton’s is already a well-oiled machine. Once the patio opens in the coming weeks, this place will be packed to the brim for weeks on end, so I’m glad I was able to dine at Burton’s prior to the crowds…
After helpful suggestions from the very polite and energetic staff, I started my meal with a Moscow Mule. Served in the traditional copper mug with a very classy Burton’s insignia, this cocktail was just what I needed. The Gosling’s ginger beer was flavorful but not too sweet, and the drink as a whole was delightful and refreshing. This beverage was great, however, my friend ordered the Huckleberry Mint Lemonade, which totally blew me away. Made with Stoli blueberi, huckleberry syrup, fresh lemon, muddled mint, and fresh blueberries, this drink not only looked gorgeous, but tasted wonderful too.
When it came to food, I had a difficult time ordering because so many of the menu items are gluten-free and I couldn’t decide! After speaking with the manager about the gluten situation, he informed me that the restaurant as a whole uses gluten-free flour for nearly everything. This was insane yet brilliant to me. I was in shock. I kept asking about specific items that are battered and fried in most places, but his answer was consistent. Since there is no glutinous flour in the kitchen, the level of cross contamination is nearly zilch. They guarantee this by having essentially an entire wing of the kitchen solely devoted to safe preparation. Burton’s also plates every single one of their gluten free items on a square dish, so even the servers can identify the difference between a GF and a regular dish.
After learning this about Burton’s, I felt entirely comfortable. It felt like home to me, and I hadn’t even eaten anything yet! After a few internally tense moments trying to decide what to order, I settled on the Firecracker Shrimp, Maxx Burger, Mediterranean Risotto, and Salmon Romesco. Funny story: I asked the server if the risotto could be made without dairy just for the hell of it, already accepting defeat since I knew risotto was usually loaded with cream and cheese, but to my surprise, he said they could make it entirely without dairy. “That can’t be so!” I said, as I asked him to double check with the kitchen. Being a good sport, he went back and checked with the chef, only to return and assure me once again the risotto could be prepared entirely dairy-free. I felt like a jerk, but I was just in utter shock that the staff and kitchen were so accommodating.
The lovely servers coursed my meal out for me, which meant I received the Firecracker Shrimp first. These delectable shrimp were served with a sweet chili sriracha sauce and served atop coleslaw. Man, did these pack a punch. The flavor was so unique and satisfying that my brain made a mental note. Literally, I was editing the photos the next day and I took one look at the shrimp and immediately had to walk to the refrigerator and eat the leftovers that I was so grateful to have taken home. I look at a lot of photos of food constantly, but this is the first time I literally had to get up and take a bite of what was in the photo.
Next came the main dishes, which included the Maxx Burger, Risotto and Salmon. The Maxx Burger was utterly divine. This burger was served with all the fixin’s, including gluten free onion rings, pickles, lettuce, and a special sauce atop a beautiful, fluffy gluten-free bun. I also must talk about the French fries served alongside this monster, because they were severely addicting. I had absolutely no self-control when it came to this dish. I painstakingly split the burger in half with my friend as a courtesy, but on the inside, I really wanted it all.
Now we’ll get into the risotto I made such a fuss about. This stuff was addicting. Full of artichoke hearts, roasted tomatoes, spinach, and basil, this stuff was so incredibly creamy and delicious, despite the fact that it was entirely gluten-and dairy-free. I tried to coax a different manager into spilling their secrets, but I didn’t get very far. Damn.
The Salmon Romesco also did not disappoint. A note for those who can’t consume dairy like me – the rice is cooked with butter and the romesco sauce also contains dairy, but I gladly picked around to eat the extremely flavorful and tender salmon and broccoli. I also should note that this dish was beautifully plated.
While I was too full to peruse the dessert menu, there are definitely a good amount of options for us gluten-free folk. If there was one thing I learned about my experience at Burton’s, it’s that they will do anything and everything they can to make sure your meal is the highlight of your day, week, or even year. Gotta love a restaurant who cares so deeply about good service as well as great food.