In early April, I picked up dinner from the drive-thru window at Bistro49 Culinary Laboratory. They’re located at 250 French Bar Road in Jackson, which is north of Gold Country Center.

Before the pandemic, Bistro49 offered dine-in and carry-out services. Bistro49 adapted to the stay-at-home order by limiting their menu to two burgers, three sandwiches, three salads, the soup of the day (with or without salad), and three entrée dishes.

They also opened their back window as a drive thru. Cars (and SUVs) can fit easily underneath the awning attached to the back of the building.

My mother and I would order carry-out meals from Bistro49, anyway. We ate at Bistro49’s predecessor, Bistro Bella Cucina, and found the small, open dining area to be too loud for us.

Bistro49 requires that you call in your order, but they don’t take your credit or debit card information over the phone. You have to pay for your food at the drive thru window, which was a bit awkward as I had to punch in my debit card PIN on a machine through my open car window.

I ordered their bacon cheeseburger, which came with a side of steak fries. My mother ordered their keto-friendly garlic butter chicken.

My Meal

The half-pound beef patty was placed inside a fresh brioche bun. I appreciated seeing generous amounts of cheddar and gouda cheeses atop the patty. Two large tomato slices and large pieces of lettuce poked out from underneath the patty. The bacon was hiding.

As I bit into the burger, I could tell the meat was flavorful and there was a lot of thousand island dressing. Big chunks of lettuce, one tomato slice, and drips of thousand island fell out as I ate.

Only as I neared the center of the burger did I taste the texture of the bacon that sat between the cheese and the patty. The bacon slices were small but thick, and the taste was completely obscured by the beef and cheese.

The patty had a small amount of pink in the center. As I neared the end of the burger, I was happy to see that the patty covered nearly the entire circumference of the bun.

As I reached the center of the burger, I found that the buttery coating on the top half of the bun was peeling off and sticking to my fingers. The bottom of the bun was also starting to get soggy from all the produce and thousand island between the patty and the bun. I’m a fast eater, so I suspect I’d have a disintegrating bun on my hands if I ate more slowly.

The steak fries seemed to be the same as those you can buy at the Raley’s store not far from the restaurant. I could barely taste any salt on the fries, so you may want to add your own seasoning.

I tasted beef and thousand island for a few hours after the meal. The beef aftertaste gradually dissipated and left me with a thousand island aftertaste that stayed with me until I went to bed.

Mom’s Meal

If you follow the ketogenic diet, this dish may interest you. My mother ordered it because it seemed appetizing.

The garlic butter chicken dish was a large one that included chicken filets sauteed with herbs, bits of bacon, brussels sprouts, sun-dried tomato, and mushrooms sauteed with garlic. The food was coated in a garlic butter sauce.

The Bistro49 keto-friendly garlic chicken

My mother found the brussels sprouts hard to cut, but that’s to be expected. My mother was surprised to find the chicken filets were also hard to cut.

A strong aftertaste was a part of this meal, too. Unlike the bacon cheeseburger, my mother reported she still tasted the sauce the next morning.

The Verdict

The bacon cheeseburger is on par with top-of-the-line burgers that you find at various restaurants and gourmet burger chains like Red Robin. Thumbs up for the fresh brioche bun, veggies, beef patty, and cheese. Thumbs down for the bacon.

My mother said the best thing about her meal was the mushrooms. Thumbs down for everything else.

The overall price was a little over $29.

Want to Try Them?

Visit the Bistro49 website to get the latest menu and drive-thru hours. You can also order from their website or give them a call at 209-223-2213.

Amador Business Ticker food reviews are adventures in local dining with Editor Eric Butow and his mom.