Snuffy's Malt Shop: quinessential burgers & shakes

By Jenny Ledig

Although a Twin City chain, Snuffy’s Malt Shop, feels like a unique mom-and-pop burger and shake joint that is a completely American institution. It’s a pretty simple place; you seat yourself, order a burger, melt, or hot dog and a shake or some other ice cream based drink. The walls are covered in whimsical murals featuring animals eating diner fare and bunnies reppin’ local schools including dear old Macalester. The menu is pretty limited; there’s basically only variations of sandwiches like burgers, grilled cheese, and fried fish. However, as someone who is suspicious of places that attempt to offer too wide of a menu, (I’m looking at you, Cheesecake Factory!) I respect places that know their strengths and stick to them. The ice cream part of the menu outshines the solid food section. There are lots of combinations of malts, sundaes, floats, and phosphates. I am always a big fan of fudge flavored malts and Snuffy’s did not disappoint. There are two sizes, full for $4.35, or half for $3.35. If you can come to a consensus on a flavor, I’d recommend sharing with a friend since it’s a much better deal. I ordered the bacon cheeseburger, which was good, but upon first glance, the bacon looked a little unappetizing. The strips of bacon too closely resembled the microwaveable breakfast meat I have occasionally zapped. However, the burger tasted much better than it looked. All the burgers can come with single or double patties; I opted for the single and left satisfied especially since I ordered some sides to split. Eleanor Trenary, ’13 and I couldn’t choose between the onion rings or fries, so we decided to just go crazy and order single orders of both. It was a good choice as even after trying both, I don’t know if I could settle on just one. The greasy-but-not-too-greasy sides really hit the spot. A grilled cheese was calling Eleanor’s name, and she had a few options to choose from ranging from the classic to with tomato and bacon to Snuffy’s signature grilled cheese. In keeping with the spirit of the dinner, Eleanor opted for the grandest of the grilled cheeses, Snuffy’s, which came with swiss and cheddar cheeses, tomato and onion. While Snuffy’s isn’t very vegetarian friendly, this could be a good, filling option. I felt like I had stepped into small town America and as Eleanor so aptly put it, “I feel like Joe the Plumber should be at the table next to us.” The burgers are good, the grilled cheese golden delicious, and the shakes the perfect consistency. On a nice Spring day, a bike ride to Snuffy’s would be a great excursion, and a burger and malt would be the perfect treat. 244 Cleveland Ave S St Paul, MN 55105 Monday-Saturday: 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Sunday: 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.