On a recent trip to Lubbock, I wasn't very enthusiastic when my friend suggested we have lunch at a new burger joint called Blue Sky Texas. I figured a burger is a burger; however, I quickly changed my tune when we went inside and I saw the menu. One of the featured items is a green chile cheeseburger. You can also get green chile-cheese fries and chile sticks (fried chiles). Yum. My taste buds were ready. These are menu items you don't find at most burger places. I went for the green chile cheeseburger, and my friend ordered something called Blue Sky "steak" and fries (two ground-chuck patties stuffed with grilled onions and jalpeÃ±os and topped with queso).
While we were waiting for our food, we took in the large mural of a biplane making loop-de-loops over a High Plains landscape, a scene that dominated one wall and underscored the restaurant's regional roots--the only other location (the original) is in Amarillo. The High Plains produces a lot of chiles, which is probably one reason they figure so prominently in the Blue Sky menu. That, and the area's proximity to New Mexico, where green chile dishes are common.
The green chile cheeseburger was delicious, even if it was stuffed so full of juicy chiles that I had to eat it with a fork. My friend found her "steak" and fries less satisfying--too many jalapeÃ±os and not enough queso--but we both liked the hand-battered onion rings we'd ordered on the side. Kudos to Blue Sky (the Lubbock location turns a year old this month), a burger joint with a menu that relates to its surroundings. Regional food is almost always a good bet. Call 806/355-8100 (Amarillo) or 806/368-7591 (Lubbock); www.blueskytexas.com.