You can hear the excitement in Chef Bobby Rosenberger’s voice as he goes over the dishes available at his new pop up restaurant SHRMPBRGR. (Yes, that is the correct spelling.)
The menu boasts the titular SHRMPBRGR, a shrimp patty with salsa, iceberg lettuce and other toppings, served on a bun. And there’s Shrimp Moco Loco, served over pineapple rice with tomato gravy and a sunny-side up egg. There’s a West Coast Roast, also served over pineapple rice with salsa and bok choy. For dessert, SHRMPBRGR serves Ice Pops, with proceeds from sales contributed to the fight against global warming.
To try these eclectic taste treats, don’t wait too long to visit 215 N. Summit St., sharing space with Balance Grille near Jefferson Ave.. “I’m going to be there indefinitely, but it won’t last more than 20 weeks,” Rosenberger said.
From Detroit to Toledo
SHRMPBRGR is a response to COVID-related slow down in the restaurant business; a passion project for Rosenberger whose full-time gig is as the Executive Chef at the Detroit Club in Michigan. “Because (The Detroit Club) is a hotel, we haven’t reopened yet. They’ve been taking this time to do some renovations. I was bored throughout the pandemic, so I decided I’d find a way to cook,” he said.
Rosenberger was put in touch with Prakash Karamchandani, owner of Balance Pan-Asian Grille. The pair agreed to let Rosenberger open his temporary restaurant at Balance’s downtown location on N Summit St.
“We liked each other’s ideas, and we talked a little bit about it and we thought we could make something happen. It kind of snowballed on me, to be honest— it’s bigger than I thought it was going to be. But I think we can pull it off, and we’re excited about it,” Rosenberger said.
Rosenberger, despite being only 28, has already worked in the food industry for 15 years, starting as a dishwasher for a Coney Island location at the age of 13.
“I started cooking about a year or two later. I did that for some time, then left to work in a factory for a little while, and realized I missed (the buzz of the kitchen). So I came back with a job cooking in a steakhouse, and just worked my way up in the industry from there.”
Working on SHRMPBRGR has re-energized Rosenberger. “This is my first project that is going to be a business that’s my own. I love to cook, I love to be creative and design menus. So this project is going to be really important, because it’s the first time I get the chance to see if I have the chops to make it by myself.”
SHRMPBRGR is open Thursdays through Sundays but Rosenberger would be happy to expand the days. And if it proves really popular, well…who knows? “I like to not get ahead of myself, because I have a tendency to do that and get a little overoptimistic. But if this proves to be successful, and the people of Toledo like it, I would be entirely open to opening a brick and mortar location in Toledo.”
Noon-3pm and 5-8pm, Thursday through Sunday
215 N Summit St.