Since opening its doors in 2011, The Downtown Hall of Fame, located on East Street in Hutto, has expanded its space three times to include larger dining areas, a billiards room and a live entertainment space.
Now, a recent expansion of the restaurant’s kitchen completed over the summer will allow Judy and Sean Smith, owners of The Downtown Hall of Fame, to focus their menu on one of their original passions: burgers.
“Our goal was to be a burger place/bar,” Sean said.
The restaurant added a hood vent and expanded the kitchen to double its size. The expansion and additions now allow the Smiths to cook with a grill and a fryer.
“We wanted to give people some more of [what]they like—like fried food, hamburgers and french fries,” Sean said.
The Downtown Hall of Fame constructs all of its burgers from scratch, hand-pressing each one of its patties. Sean has the ground beef delivered to the restaurant from O’Brien Meats, a local butcher based out of Taylor.
The Smiths launched their burger menu in summer 2018 with four staple burgers. The restaurant began offering more burger options in early February following the success of the new menu.
“We went from having this huge menu to just focusing on [burgers],” Judy said.
Sean has crafted a green chile burger using chiles from San Antonio, New Mexico—the purported home of the original green chile burger.
The restaurant has also begun selling a barbecue burger loaded with barbecue sauce, cheese, two hand-battered onion rings and house-smoked brisket. For the first time at the restaurant, Sean is running a barbecue pit and smoking meats for the menu.
“That’s what we take pride in. We try to just start from scratch and create our own thing, so I thought it would be cool to do that with brisket,” Sean said.
In all, the kitchen expansion has allowed the restaurant to begin serving more than a dozen new items, but the Smiths say they quickly revised their menu to reflect what they always wanted their restaurant to be.
“Burgers have definitely had a huge impact on our business and in such a short period of time,” Sean said. “We’re eager to see what the future holds.”
The Downtown Hall of Fame
205 East St., Hutto
Hours: Sun.-Wed. 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Thu.-Fri. 11 a.m.-midnight; Sat. 11 a.m.-1 a.m.; kitchen closes at 10 p.m. nightly