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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Burger joint of the week: Mojo's #1

Some sailors have a girl in every port. I have a burger in every neighborhood, and years ago my MacArthur Drive burger was the burger served up at Andy’s Drive-In. Well, times have changed and so has the name, but there are still great burgers to be found at that old location -- now home to MoJo’s #1.

Yes, there is a MoJo’s #2, in Rose City. Both of them serve up soft serve ice cream, burgers and fries, and both are dependable for smashburgers served up on toasted buns with lots of melted cheese.

I ran over to MoJo’s #1 for lunch the other day. The weather was perfect and I wanted to eat on a patio. What I didn’t know was that the little dairy shack has expanded and now has a tiny indoor seating area -- that you have to go through to get to the patio.

I placed my order up front, waited for my number to be called and took my bag-o-burger with me to a nice comfortable seat at the end of the patio where I could watch the line of cars pull up and pull out as the lunch rush ebbed on. When I took my seat there were seven cars parked nose-in along the front perimeter. Windows were down, radios were on and the scent of hot meat on a griddle permeated the air.

The bag felt heavier than I had anticipated; I’d gone for a #1 special, the Jumbo Double Cheeseburger with French Fries and a Drink for $5.99 advertised on the front of the building. I figured since it was a dollar more than the regular double cheeseburger that I’d be getting my money’s worth. Still, I guess I wasn’t thinking how heavy that bag might be for the price.

The fries were on top -- yes, pre-cut fries, but salt-dipped fries that were extraordinarily crispy on the outside and mellow on the inside, addictive sturdy fries that could be appetite busters. It took all my self-control not to eat them as I photographed them alongside the burger and the cup of Hunt’s ketchup that went along with them.

And that burger... a heavy burger. I would estimate ⅔ lb. of beef between those seedless, toasted buns, wrapped tight the old-fashioned way with wax paper. The default for the burger was a butter-sweated bun, a nice toasting, a slick of mayo, a smattering of iceberg lettuce and white onion pieces under a round of tomato. No pickles here, a small surprise.

The twin third-of-a-pound patties were likely pre-formed but of a top quality beef that didn’t need much seasoning. What little it had, it had undoubtably picked up from the griddle itself, with a bare background taste of long-charred cheese and a crusting that belied a little salt in its makeup. Speaking of cheese, it was American, and the melted-on slices glued the patties and bun together delightfully.

This burger was of the juicy/greasy quality you’d expect from a good drive-in, and required every bit of that wax paper to keep the wetness from rolling down one’s arms. Moreso, napkins were required (and provided in-bag) for sopping up the runaway juices that formed just about everywhere.

An enjoyable, unfinishable by the normal person burger, once the fries were added in. I walked away from the rest of my fries and the burger remnants guiltily. They were good, but I was unwilling to injure myself to consume it all.

You’ll find Mojo’s #1 at 3801 MacArthur Drive in North Little Rock -- and Mojo’s #2 in Rose City. I will have to go back for a banana split someday. (501) 753-4445.
Markham Street Grill & Pub Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato /a>


  1. Great serving which is very generous that is priced very pocket friendly. Try their small goods sandwiches that are bite sized.

  2. Andrew E. “Andy” Nahlen of Conway, formerly of North Little Rock, passed away April 3, 2012, at the age of 91.

    He was born Dec. 22, 1920, in Conway, to the late Joseph Nahlen and Christine Rumker Nahlen.

    He attended St. Joseph Catholic School and was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Conway.

    He was the proprietor of Andy’s Dairy Freez in North Little Rock for more than 40 years, where he was known by many only as “Andy”. Andy’s Dairy Freez was famous for its friendly service and great food, especially foot long hot dogs featuring chili made by Andy according to his personal recipe.

    He was a veteran of the Air Force and served in the Pacific Theatre in World War II. He was a Staff Sergeant awarded several commendations, including the Distinguished Flying Cross.

    He will be greatly missed by daughters, Tonya Nahlen of Conway and Dana Nahlen (Nate Deuel) of Dallas, Texas. His grandchildren are Jenny Fletcher (Ben) of Little Rock, Katherine Ham of Conway, Nickie Starkey (Tom) of San Angelo, Texas, Bobbie Jo Lyons (Fred Acklin) of Conway, Nathaniel “Len” Deuel and Drake Andrew Deuel of Dallas, Texas. He also enjoyed the love of four great-grandchildren.

    Mr. Nahlen was preceded in death by brothers, Joseph and Clarence Nahlen; and sister, Theresa Nahlen, all of Conway.

    He is survived by Sister Josita Nahlen, RSM of Fort Smith, and Tony Nahlen, Gertrude Siebenmorgen, Anna Marie Gunderman and TJ Nahlen, all of Conway; and numerous other family members and friends.

    Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, April 9, with the Rosary service at 7 p.m. at Roller McNutt Funeral Home in Conway, 327-7727.

    A Mass of Resurrection to celebrate his life will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday, April 10, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Conway, with entombment following in St. Joseph Mausoleum.

    Memorials may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital at


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