Clarke's Standard - Nostalgic Burgers 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.