Brothers Matt and Tom Shaw started Hoodburger in 2015, often cooking in alleyways and behind bars and nightclubs. Tiger Bao in Northbridge followed after the duo grew tired of pop-up life and wanted to try something different. After several aborted attempts to find a home for Hoodburger, Tiger Bao has now been permanently replaced by its predecessor.
The brothers say the store’s branding and menu are a "love letter" to fast-food chains of the ’80s and ’90s, but with a strong emphasis on quality. Prior to opening they operated a regular “test kitchen”, alerting customers-in-the-know about new recipes via social media.
The core menu features 10 burgers, including the tribute Big Mack and Ribwich creations that proved a hit in the test kitchen. The spicy cheeseburger includes a Carolina Reaper ketchup, and imported ingredients such as Chicago-style “sport peppers” and McClure’s pickles from Detroit are available to add on.
Breakfast is a significant addition to Hoodburger’s offering; the menu is inspired by familiar (Mc)muffins. Imported American soft drinks, and shakes and sundaes made from malted milk soft serve cater for the sweeter tooth.
The test kitchen is still open too, if only to keep things fun for the brothers, .