Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Charcoal Pit Still Satisfies
We journeyed to Delaware yesterday to enjoy the beautiful weather and engage in some tax-free shopping.
While we were there we stopped at the Charcoal Pit on Concord Pike (Route 202) in North Wilmington.
We often passed this retro drive-in eatery but we never stopped.
Yesterday we stopped and wow, are we glad we did.
Founded in 1956, the Charcoal Pit is not some recreated 1950s burger joint. Rather, it's the real deal. And little has changed at the Pit since it first opened its doors. Sure, there have been some updates and the sort of functional modernization you'd expect. But the concept is the same and, for the most part the surroundings, the food and the service embrace the approach that made this place a success from day one.
The Charcoal Pit's burgers have been chosen among the top 100 burgers in the whole nation and the Pit is one of only a few burger places in the entire region to achieve this distinction. As the name implies, all of the burgers are char broiled. The Pit boasts that charcoal broiling "just tastes better naturally" and indeed it does.
Burgers are available in four or eight ounce sizes. We ordered the eight ounce deluxe cheeseburger which came with all the trimmings: crisp Bermuda onion, lettuce, beefsteak tomato slice, pickles and just a bit of mayo. And of course we opted for American cheese. The patty is served not on a soft, flaky roll but on a larger, crisper kaiser roll. It's delicious! The fries and onion rings were good, too.
Just one caution: If you're ordering a burger well-done you may want to opt for medium-well as a char broiled burger well-done might be a bit dryer them you're accustomed to. These burgers will not be as juicy and/or sloppy as some others you might have enjoyed elsewhere.
Though there are several other Charcoal Pits in Delaware this is not to be confused with any burger chain. This is an old-fashioned roadside eatery with great food, friendly, personalized service, a distinctive atmosphere and great prices. The eight ounce deluxe is $5.49. The four ounce deluxe is $3.79. A chocolate sundae is $3.49 and an old-fashioned, hand dipped milk shake is $3.79. All kids meals (for children under 10) with fries are only $3.99. And kids clown sundaes are only 99 cents.
And the Pit also char broils steaks and features a full lunch and dinner menu.
You owe it to yourself to hop on down to the Charcoal Pit and enjoy a unique, fun dining experience. Hurry!