Burger Nostalgia at Clarke's Standard in Midtown

Clarke's Standard makes burgers to wax nostalgic about

Cue the Shake Shack comparisons in 3, 2, 1.

Now that Clarke's Standard, the Midtown East debut of a new burger chain from P.J. Clarke's, has arrived, we will spare you the Venn diagrams and lay it out simply: Clarke's Standard is a burger slinger that can stand on its own merits.

No monstrous burgers these, the perky Angus burger ($7.50) is slapped with American cheese, tomato and butter lettuce, then swaddled in a cute cardboard holder frilled with picnic-table-esque red-and-white paper.

The Green Chilies Cheeseburger ($7.85) is not face-meltingly hot; instead, the charred peppers, garlic aioli and mustard lend gentle verve.

Plumper than their name suggests, shoestring fries ($3) were serviceable for dunking in Sir Kensington's Gourmet Scooping Ketchup, but we abandoned ours for the golden-hued tater tots ($4). Showered in parsley and an abundance of Parmesan, each bite sets off a gratifying cheese flurry.

And to finish, do not resist the nostalgia-inducing Little Clarke's ice cream cups. Limited-edition flavors include sweet cream packed with hunks of cinnamon doughnuts, complete with a tiny wooden-paddle spoon.

The volley has been launched, Shake Shack.