Over the past few years, various mass dining collectives have been taking the places of aged mall food courts, usually in Oklahoma City’s semi-fashionable downtown districts. However, in the particularly white-bread suburbs of Edmond, a group of upscale eateries has seemed to develop near the lonely train tracks, to great effect.
It’s called the Edmond Railyard, 23 W. 1st St., and inside are many places I deftly dream of someday trying, but, for this review, I focused primarily on Blue J’s Rockin’ Grill, a hamburger joint modeled after a moderately destitute Hard Rock Café, with rock, rap and country posters covering the walls, as well as a few guitars here and there; look upwards though and you’ll notice a drum kit painstakingly transformed into a lighting rig for the place, which, really, is kind of ingenious.
I placed my order as the cashier sang along to a 70s hit churning from the overhead speaker. This place seems fun, I thought as I took my cup of ice water and had a deep swig. My friend was off at another place—I think to find one of those famed seltzers with alcohol—as I sat under the illuminated drums, waiting for my food which, thankfully, came out relatively fast.
The Railyard has very spacious outdoor seating in a specifically gated area, but I only consider it spacious because the place was unsettlingly empty. We had our pick of any table in the place and selected the one near the garbage can that was topped with gently teetering pizza boxes that precariously begged to be toppled with the next strong breeze.
There were no appetizers to be had for this meal and that was okay, because Blue J’s vittles were packed with taste until they popped like a teenager’s pimply face. My friend ordered the Burnin’ Love Grilled Cheese Sandwich ($11.99), a temporally heated version of the melted monstrosity, made here with mozzarella, monetary jack and cheddar, as well as fresh jalapenos, all sealed deeply within.
As she took a bite of the sandwich, she was taken back a bit at just how spicy the thing was; I was quickly inspired to taste it for myself, happy to have the moving feeling of three cheeses lost in the heady toast, the hidden jalapenos, often long strands, attacking from behind with mocking precision, bringing slight tears to my tired eyes.
Taking another elongated gulp of cold water to cool my tongue, I started in on my sandwich, the Blue J Burger ($9.99) with a side of Slap Yo Mama Fries ($2.00). A thick slab of charred beef topped with bleu cheese crumbles, sauteed onions, smoked bacon and, as if invoking the wild spirit of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins himself, a little bit of “Voodoo Sauce” to stoke the reignited fires of my inner hell.
The tangible turn of flavors was the edible equivalent of two sultry sides of pure hot wax, each taste an anthemic sensation of flame and fury; the Slap Yo Mama Fries only increasing the deliberately delicious heat, giving me exactly what I wanted and needed, each bite dropping down to the dank cauldron of my iron tummy, pitchforked by the hungriest of devils.
Greasy sweats began to crown on my forehead as I breathed deeply in-between bites of this incredibly satisfying burger and fries duo. Almost finished, as I was enjoying the last few bites, I ultimately realized then and there that old rock and roll adage is, obviously, very true for my situation: it’s ultimately better to burn out than to fade away hungry. Cómpralo ya!