It was burgers that bonded Ron Terrell and Danny O’Connor. Terrell, a FOX 23 news anchor, met O’Connor, a musician, while covering O’Connor’s passion project at the Outsiders House Museum.
They soon became friends, grabbing burgers for lunch (and sometimes breakfast) and talking about baseball, music and food. Now the two have a series on fox23.com called "Burger Brothers." Follow the Burger Brothers on social media for updates on where they’re eating.
We caught up with Terrell between bites.
Tell us about Burger Brothers.
A few months back, I was doing a story on the Outsiders House, and having had a few burger lunches previously with Danny, he suggested we visit all of the local burger joints and document it. I thought that sounded like a great idea, went back and pitched it at work, they loved it, and Burger Brothers was born. The series will run on fox23.com. We’re starting out as a monthly series, but that could change. Our goal is to take the viewer on a journey through each restaurant and the history of each restaurant. We want to highlight what makes each place special. What differentiates each one from the others. It’s really an opportunity to relish how lucky we are to have places like this. We get to talk to the owners and enjoy some fantastic burgers.
What is it about hamburgers and Tulsa?
They seem to go together like peanut butter and jelly. It’s true. There are so many great burger spots in Tulsa and even the surrounding areas. Danny talks about it all the time ... you travel around the country and don’t see as many classic burger joints in other cities as you do here. And what’s great is, everyone has a different favorite spot. You could ask 10 people their favorite place, and you could get 10 different answers.
What’s your go-to burger joint?
Brownie’s has always been a go-to. The burgers, the root beer, the onion rings. What’s been so cool about this is that it’s gotten me out of my routine a little bit. We’ve shot a few of these, and I can honestly say I have and will visit all of these places again.
How do you order your burger?
My favorite way? No veggies. Sometimes onions. No mustard, mayo or ketchup. I know ... that seems weird. Generally, bacon cheeseburgers are my favorite. I will, on occasion, get something like barbecue sauce or blue cheese. I do love a burger with a fried egg. So my burger tastes range from basic to eccentric.
What’s your favorite drink with a burger?
Nothing beats a good root beer. A fountain Coke made in the right kind of machine also is good. If I’m feeling crazy, I’ll order a chocolate shake.
Many burger joints in Oklahoma have been around a long time. To what would you credit that longevity?
Just from observation, in the case of so many of these restaurants, they stayed within families for multiple generations, and are still in those families in some cases. The ones that are eventually sold are so well established that the new owners seem to understand that history and don’t want to mess with what has worked. And I think these places hold memories for so many people from childhood. They got burgers as a kid, and years, even decades, later, they remain special places, and they continue to frequent them with their own families.