Monday, December 27, 2010

It's an airport, I know

Classic Hamburger with Cheese
Originally uploaded by jaceman4
It kind of sucks that when you walk into an airport hungry you know two things if you don't have food on you. It won't really taste that good and you'll pay twice what you'd normally pay for a non-microwave iteration of whatever you're getting. So I can't say I'm entirely surprised that I didn't really like Oak Street Beach Cafe in the Chicago-Midway airport.

Meat was microwaved piece of meh, bun was a typical sesame seed item, lettuce was old, condiments was a bunch of little Heinz packets, cheese was nicely melted, but suspiciously like a Kraft Single, fries were okay, liked the pickle spear, and I'm done. It's an airport, it's airport food, obviously I'm not recommending anyone go out of their way to Midway for this place.

Rating of the Burger:
Meat: C
Bun: B-
Fixings: C+
Condiments: C
Sides: B
Price: $6.50-$11
Overall Rating: C-
Recommended burger: Classic Hamburger

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Entirely unoriginal

Pepper Jack Burger
Originally uploaded by jaceman4
The menu just calls it a cheeseburger, and I know, I know, it's an airport. I was stuck in Chicago-Midway due to a delay in my flight, otherwise, I would never have come to Miller's Pub. Of course that and the fact that I was too lazy to venture down to the food court which I had been to before, but I forgot. That's okay though, because I have to say that the choices weren't entirely great either, so it's okay.

Okay, it's an airport, let's not get our hopes up. I can't really say that the burger patty was super fresh, I'm not entirely convinced that it wasn't microwaved. Overall though, it was beefy, I'm sure it would've been good if it were fresh, but it wasn't. Fixings were run of the mill, cheese was cheese, bun was a typical sesame bun. The burger itself didn't have any condiments, but the table had a cayenne hot sauce and a BBQ sauce named after the restaurant itself. They weren't anything spectacular, to be honest. The hot sauce was watery and the BBQ sauce was a little too sweet.

The fries were fries, no knock on that, no kudos for anything either.

Rating of the Burger:
Meat: C-
Bun: B-
Fixings: B
Condiments: C-
Sides: B
Price: $9.50
Overall Rating: C-
Recommended Burger: N/A

Monday, December 20, 2010

Been there, done that...

Deluxe Burger
Originally uploaded by jaceman4
For as long as I could remember, this place was a pretty shabby teriyaki joint that no one really frequented. I only knew this because I used to do a lot of shopping at the Safeway across the street. Lo and behold, now a fancy new sign is above the door and the interior looks completely revamped (for Safeway too), and here we now have Thunder Burger and Teriyaki. When you walk in, the board menu looks to be something of a knock-off of University Teriyaki and the menu options look to be something of a knock off of Orange King. With nothing better to go off of, I opted to order the deluxe burger combo.

Not really sure what exactly makes this burger deluxe other than its name, but overall it wasn't a bad burger. Meat had a nice full beefy flavor and a nice char to it. The bun is your typical sesame bun, the house sauce your typical sweet Thousand Island/relish based sauce, it was so nondescript that I honestly can't remember much about it, the fixings your typical shredded iceberg, and the cheese your typical sliced cheese. You really can't get much more straightforward than that. That works for it.

The fries were your bulk order frozen fries that were subsequently dropped into a deep fryer. The last five words of the previous sentence alone typically make anything good. Overall, not a bad place to grab a bite when you're in the area and hungry, but it's also pretty plain, so not somewhere you'd go out of your way for.

Rating of the Burger:
Meat: B+
Bun: B-
Fixings: B-
Condiments: C+
Sides: B
Price: $4.50-$8
Overall Rating: C+
Recommended Burger: Teriyaki Burger

Thursday, December 9, 2010

You've got to be kidding me...

Mushroom Burger
Originally uploaded by jaceman4
I kind of already had a hunch when I came here that I wouldn't be rating this place very highly. It's not that their food is bad, it's just that you're paying WAY too much for what you're really getting. It's more the price than the quality that really kills Kidd Valley's rating. It's funny, because it has all of these awards (none since 2000), like Evening Magazine best non-franchise burger... which leads me to believe that Evening Magazine knows absolutely nothing about burgers or that Seattle burgers were hurting in 2000, unless the quality of the Kidd Valley burger has dropped drastically, and I mean drastically in the last 10 years, which I suppose is entirely possible.

It's a pretty Burger King-esque affair, the meat was well done, they have this nifty rotating flame broiler thingy in the kitchen (kind of like those rack bagel toaster or pizza baker things). The bun was a typical Franz's sesame bun, the fixings were, well, not the best you can get, but relatively okay if you compare to a fast food joint, to me it's pretty hard to screw up sauteed mushrooms, condiments were, the typical, though on a mushroom burger you don't really expect much, so I couldn't really taste a whole lot.

The sides were good, the fries were very fresh, but also, unsalted, and thereby, tasted like a lot of potato, and that gets old pretty fast. All in all, not a bad place to go if you're in a rush, they do have better sides like garlic fries, sweet potato fries, and fried mushrooms, but they also cost extra.

Rating of the burger:
Meat: B-
Bun: B-
Fixings: C
Condiments: D
Sides: B
Price: $9-$12
Overall Rating: C-
Recommended Burger: Bacon Cheeseburger

Monday, December 6, 2010

Plain and simple

Blazing Burger
Originally uploaded by jaceman4
I honestly would never have known this place existed save for the fact that I opted to pick up my online Sears order in store this weekend. Driving into the plaza, I saw a little A-sign that told me that gourmet burgers and wraps can be had at this little place called Shake 'n Go, which honestly to me sounded kind of gimmicky simply because the name of the establishment sounded more like a smoothie stand than a burger joint. Walking in, it's interesting, because you see guitars and saxophones mounted on the walls with giant pictures of Jimi Hendrix, Elvis Preistley, and B.B. King and the like on the wall. Overall though, it's really clean and they have a really wide variety of burgers (over 25 I think).

The meat quality was a good, full beefy flavor. The fixings were normal for the most part, though each different type of burger has some kind of special fixing, mine was the Blazing Burger which had sauteed mushrooms and onions. The bun was, a bun, nothing to really report there. The condiment was their "house sauce" which was a semi-sweet tomato-mayo type of deal, think Big Mac sauce replica, run-of-the-mill but good. What made the burger enjoyable though, was that it was simply no-frills and well prepared. It was a straight-forward affair, what you got was what was on the menu. Sometimes, that's all you really need.

The fries, like the burgers were the simple no-nonsense fries that you come to expect from these local joints. You can't really not like it. Great spot if you're ever in the area to stop by for a bite, a little pricier than your fast-food chains, but it's pretty worth it.

Rating of the Burger:
Meat: B+
Bun: B-
Fixings: B+
Condiments: B+
Sides: B+
Price: $7-$10
Overall rating: B+
Recommended burger: There are like 25 of them, so as of now, I can't really say

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's no longer 2006

Obviously, I'm amazing at telling time. So I was meeting up with a friend and he recommended this place, so very imaginatively named Sport Restaurant and Bar. He told me that the burgers here were supposed to be pretty good, so I figured, hey, why not, let's give it a go. It's a pretty posh location, I think it's located in the same complex as one of the local television studios. Parking was a bit annoying, but we got street parking nearby. The monorail makes driving around there a little crazy.

Anyways, it's a pretty typical sports bar kind of atmosphere, TVs in every booth playing some station of sports, but you want to hear about the burger right? Well at the top of their burger listing was their kobe burger, which is served "on a toasted La Panzanella brioche bun with roasted onion spread, tomato and lettuce". The kobe beef was good. Really good. Unfortunately, their definition of medium was "still kind of bleeding" which I don't mind, but that got stuff all over the bun, which got a little soggy. I like the brioche bun though, it worked well. The lettuce and tomatoes were, well, lettuce and tomatoes, I really can't say a whole lot, pretty fresh. I didn't taste a whole lot of the onion spread, the beefy-juiciness of the burger kind overpowered it a lot, but all in all, it hinted suspiciously similar to a honey-mustard.

The fries were shoe string fries, but well done, they had some kind of herb seasoning. We also ordered the ale-battered onion rings as an appetizer, pretty good. It's not a bad place to go if you're in the area, while it might have been novel, the kobe burger is hardly original anymore, overall it's pretty much just a normal burger with really good ingredients, which isn't a bad thing. Worth a try, a little on the pricey side though.

Rating of the Burger:
Meat: A
Bun: B+
Fixings: B-
Condiments: B
Sides: A-
Price: $10-$20
Overall Rating: B+
Recommended Burger: The Kobe Burger