Shady Glen

Review by: Michael Stern

“What’s good to eat?” we ask the uniformed waitress when she steps to our booth.

“You are at Shady Glen,” she responds like a schoolteacher addressing especially slow students. “At Shady Glen, you must have cheeseburgers!”

Amen to that good advice. Although this fine old Yankee cow-country dairy bar has a menu of sandwiches and hot breakfast and is justly famous for ice cream, its way with cheeseburgers puts it in a class by itself.

The meat is not extraordinary and the cheese is merely tasty, but assemble the two of them together on the Shady Glen grill and magic happens. Three or four slices of cheese are carefully placed in a mosaic that extends far beyond the edges of the burger as it cooks, so the cheese melts directly onto the surface of the grill, turning chewy and crisp. The hamburger with its soft cheese on top and its halo of textured cheese all around is hefted onto a bun to become one memorable sandwich!

A boat of condiments is brought to every table — relish, mustard, ketchup, raw onions — and tomatoes and lettuce are available if you want to be deluxe. Good slaw and French fries come on the side of a cheeseburger plate; and the great thing to drink is an old-fashioned milk shake, the first serving of which is carefully poured by your waitress from its tall silver beaker into a glass. Of course, she leaves the beaker on the table, from which you’ll pour a couple of refills.

All kinds of milk shakes are available, taking advantage of Shady Glen’s huge repertoire of ice cream flavors — from chocolate and vanilla to frozen pudding, grape-nuts, and Almond Joy. Fruit ice creams are made from fresh fruit from local and regional farms and available topped with a semi-sweet chocolate sauce that hardens as it hits the cold ice cream and turns into fudgy chunks. In addition to the regular list of flavors, Shady Glen has seasonal varieties, such as Christmas ice cream (with red and green cherries) and Thanksgiving ice cream (pumpkin-flavored).

What To Eat


Ice Cream


Shady Glen Recipes


What do you think of Shady Glen?

5 Responses to “Shady Glen”


February 11th, 2024

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ been going for 50 yrs & still coming!!!! Consistency is key!!! Don’t change a thing!!!!!


Pat Whitehill

September 6th, 2022

Question will your booths seat 5 adults?


Denice Jones

January 25th, 2011

This is the best cheeseburger we have ever eaten. My son in the Marine Corps, stationed in Cali. I have to overnight these cheeseburgers to him from time to time. When he comes home at Xmas-time Shady Glen is the first place he wants to visit. They should go nationwide! Happy they found the cheese again. Going in tonight to grab some.


David Panagrosso

July 19th, 2010

First off, let me say I like Shady Glen. I like the atmosphere. The service is very friendly and extremely efficient. The ice cream is excellent. The way they do fried cheese is also excellent.

But the burgers? They can’t stand alone. They need that cheese, otherwise this would be a sub-par burger. I’m sorry to say it, but the hamburger patty itself is about what you would expect from a McDonald’s Quarter Pounder. It’s a pre-shaped frozen beef patty. The cheese elevates the burger to something that should be tasted. If you’re not going for the cheese, don’t go there for the burgers.

Shady Glen could learn a lesson from some of the smaller fast food burger chains that are popping up – places like Jake’s and Five Guys. If Shady Glen were to start using fresh, hand-shaped, beef, like a good ground chuck in their burgers, they’d have a thing of absolute beauty. Until they do that, go for some fried cheese and some ice cream.

Also – Shady Glen is going through some shaky times with their cheese supplier, who changed the milk used to make the cheese. They’re trying to work out some kinks, to get back to a cheese that works for their technique, and they expect to have that shortly, sometime this summer. Stay tuned.


Pat Siegmund

April 3rd, 2008

I had my first Shady Glen cheeseburger recently and I have been salivating for another one ever since. I knew what I was in store for after I looked it up on the Internet, but no one can taste on the Internet; it was just delightful! Heart-healthy, no; but the best cheeseburger I have ever had, yes, and then, yes again.

The best way to order this is by the meal because the coleslaw is also very good; the french fries round out the dinner by deluxing it. The service is extremely prompt and we were lucky enough to have a seat right by the grill. We watched the cooks making the cheeseburgers right in front of us. I can’t wait to go back again, and soon.


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