Angus Jack

Springdale burger shop plans to carry success to other cities

Posted: April 7, 2014 at 11:13 a.m.

Angus Jack is a locally owned fast-casual restaurant operated by Ian Cairns (pictured) and his wife Jean.
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Angus Jack is a locally owned fast-casual restaurant operated by Ian Cairns (pictured) and his wife Jean.

Celebrating their one-year anniversary on Tuesday, Angus Jack is a locally owned and operated restaurant that serves premium burgers made with fresh, hand-prepared ingredients and sides.

Operated by owners Ian and Jean Cairns, the fast-casual and family-friendly restaurant has a menu built around 100 percent Angus beef patties and fresh-cut French fries.

The Angus beef is fresh, never frozen, and cooked to order. Burgers range from the Snack Jack with a single patty for $3.49 to the triple-patty Lumber Jack for $7.49. Included in the price is a choice of six sauces -- mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup, honey mustard, barbecue sauce or AJ's Signature Sauce -- and five toppings -- tomato, leaf lettuce, pickles, onions or grilled onions.

"Jack It Up" toppings can be added for 99 cents each and include bacon, grilled mushrooms, fried pickles, onion strings, pico de gallo, grilled jalapenos, fresh jalapenos, Bleu cheese, a pineapple ring or a fried egg.

In addition to the familiar hamburger on a bun, the menu also offers a number of signature creations.

The Jose is two patties smothered with Monterey Jack cheese, pico de gallo and AJ's signature sauce cradled in a grilled tortilla. The Wee Jack are snack-sized sliders served on Hawaiian sweet rolls topped with cheese and grilled onions. A six-pack is priced at $7.99 and a 12-pack is $15.00.

Bright and savory flavor combinations are featured in additional menu offerings.

The Black Jack is a single-patty burger with blackening seasoning topped with Bleu cheese crumbles, grilled jalapenos, mayonnaise and a choice of fresh vegetables for $5.49.

The Haystack Jack is a single-patty burger with cheese, onion straws, barbecue sauce and a choice of fresh vegetables for $5.49.

The Cactus Jack is a double-patty burger with pepper jack cheese, fried pickles, mustard and a choice of fresh vegetables for $6.49.

Angus Jack also serves a four-cheese, deep-fried Ultimate Grilled Cheese for $3.99; a B.L.T. for $3.99; grilled or fried chicken sandwich for $5.49; and Fish and Chips for $9.99. The Jumpin' Jack presents grilled or fried chicken in a wrap with shredded asiago, lettuce tomato and a spicy Thai chili sauce for $5.49.

Another notable distinction between Angus Jack and other burger joints is their many gluten-free menu items and their careful preparation of these offerings.

"We have gone to great lengths to offer gluten-free items. There is special preparation that goes into these items. We have a separate bun toaster and separate fryer," Ian Cairns said.

Additionally, burger served on gluten-free buns are set on a designated paddle to ensure that no items are cross-contaminated.

"The gluten-free is a big, big hit," he said.

Certain side items that are naturally gluten-free, such as the French fries and the crinkle-cut sweet potato fries, are maintained and prepared in that fashion.

A treat for many with gluten intolerance is the gluten-free version of the grilled cheese sandwich, B.L.T. sandwich and grilled or fried chicken.

"We take a grilled chicken breast, and if they want it fried, we put it in rice flour and fry it in the gluten-free fryer," he said.

Options also include fried pickles, onion straws and the Jack Frost.

The Jack Frost is a signature slush drink with shaved ice that comes in a variety of flavors, including strawberry, lemonade, wildberry, mango, passion fruit and pina colada.

Angus Jack also offers hand-dipped shakes in 11 flavors, including Cappucino, banana and peach.

The flavors of the Jack Frost and the hand-dipped shakes can be mixed together for additional flavor combinations. Jean Cairns suggests strawberry-passionfruit or chocolate-pomegranate.

In addition to the menu items that are displayed behind the counter, there is also a secret menu that offers promotional dishes. This helps the restaurant test out the preparation and popularity of offerings before adding them to the official menu.

"If they pass our standards and people like them, we add it to the menu," Ian Cairns said.

The secret menu is currently offering a spicy chipotle black bean burger and a turkey burger.

The success of the original Angus Jack location in Springdale has encouraged the Cairns to prospect a second location in the Rogers or Bentonville area.

"We are currently looking for the right property and possibly the right business partner to help bring our concept to the masses. We are doing so well, we are ready to expand and within the next 30 days we should be able to offer franchising. Qualification information is on the website -- just click on the franchise tab," Ian Cairns said.

The website angusjack.com was recently updated and includes photographs of the food.

The "Promotions" tab on the website displays a $6 combo special.

"It's a single-patty burger, with or without American cheese, with a small fry and a medium drink for six bucks. It's a limited time offer. We are going to run it only for another couple of weeks, so get it while you can," Cairns said.

To celebrate their inaugural year, Angus Jack will have specials the weekend of April 11-12. More information can be found at facebook.com/angusjackburgers or at angusjack.com under the "Promotions" tab.

The restaurant is located at 2638 W. Sunset Avenue and is open 11-9 p.m. daily. Free Wi-Fi is available to dine-in customers.

NAN Dining Guide Cover on 04/11/2014

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