Sunday, March 04, 2007

One Damn Fine Burger

This Juicy Burger Would Make Whimpy Proud

Greetings Foodies!

Your able epicurean is away this week on a west coast food tour (yes, Chez Panisse and French Laundry reviews to come)… but I wanted to pass along this review to tide you over!

Is NYC’s tastiest burger in the armpit of midtown?

It just may be.

Last week, I made my first visit to Burgers and Cupcakes, the silly idea of a restaurant on 9th Avenue, between 35th and 36th.

It was crowded at lunch, but I managed to find a table and grab a menu. The seating is simple… find a table, tell the lady what you want,… and she brings it.

The place is smallish as you might expect… and seating is somewhat cramped. Minor details when hunting for a good burger.

The menu is simple and straightforward. Pick a burger…. beef, turkey, chicken, vegetable, mushroom, salmon, tuna, lamb, venison or ostrich (by the way, if you order anything other than beef or turkey, you may be in the wrong restaurant). Choices abound.

The burgers plain are 7.95…. not cheap. Toppings like every cheese under the sun, or grilled onions, mushrooms, peppers, chili… you get the picture… are a buck extra. So, load it up, and it’s gonna run you 10, 11 bucks. This is New York, remember?

The good news?

They are worth it. Size wise, this isn’t a huge burger… think medium, old fashion soda fountain size. Not a Fuddruckers burger, but not tiny either. The meat patty itself is thick, but sits on a fairly normal size bun, not unlike the kind you might pick up at the grocery for a burger you would make at home.

The buns themselves are not toasted or grilled, because they are super fresh and soft.

The burgers and moist and juicy… grilled to order on a flat griddle. Coupled with fresh toppings, a soft bun and a layer of grease on the bottom (this is the real flavor is it not?) you get one damn fine hamburger.

Fries here make me happy, as they are taken seriously. The fresh cut potatoes are twice fried (once an hour ago, and again when you order them) making them crispy delicious. They do offer chop meat chili cheese fries, but as I am already asking for a heart attack of major proportions, so I thought I’d prolong my triple bypass another week or so.

The cupcakes are good, but nothing to write home about. They are nearly 2-bite cupcakes, making them mini-cupcakes in my book. Tasty, but not as nearly impressive as the burgers. Basic flavors include vanilla and devils food… but move past these for the chocolate peanut butter marshmallow, chocolate raspberry truffle or lemon meringue.

Final take?

Worth the trip for a nostalgic, yummy burger. If you are in the neighborhood, certainly worth the effort. It’s a familiar taste… one that either your grandmother or local drugstore may have first introduced you to.

Lucky for us, grandma has a joint on 9th Ave.

Burgers and Cupcakes
458th 9 Ave
NY, NY 10018
(212) 643-1200