The Metropolitan Club

October 27th, 2009 by Richard Chudy

It’s been way too long, friends. The burger crawl destroyed one of us, and we felt it was as good a time as any to take a little burger break. But we’re back now, so you can expect plenty of reviews in the coming weeks. Our list of places to check out is ever-growing, but The Metropolitan Club, with it’s $5 burger night on Mondays, seemed like a good place to get back into the swing of things, and save a little money at the same time. I’ll apologize in advance if this review seems a little incomplete, because it sort of is, but honestly I can only review what I eat, not what could have been, so here goes.

The Metropolitan Club is first and foremost, a steakhouse, but we were drawn here because of the $5 burgers that we thought were going to be out-of-this-world. They weren’t. The Natick location boasts several burger varieties, with international references and unique options. The Chestnut Hill location, as far as I can tell, lists one normal Kobe beef burger on the regular menu (and costs $18), and three of the most popular “mini” burgers on the bar menu, which is where you’ll find the $5 offerings on Monday nights only. Now they aren’t called “mini” burgers, merely they are 5 ounce beef burgers, but a normal burger in the main dining area is 10 ounces. 5 ounces, for all you math majors out there is more than a quarter pound, and we’ve had plenty of smallish burgers that were filling (Flat Patties for one) but these were anything but. French fries? A la carte, and $8, same for the onion strings. A great deal? Hardly.

I like the concept of global-inspired burgers, but what does Swiss cheese, onions, and mushrooms have to do with Manhattan? I’m a big proponent of simply prepared food executed well. And, if anything else, The Met executes, the burgers are tasty, and (mostly) cooked to order. It’s not easy cooking such a small burger to the proper temperature, but overall they do it right. The fries, both regular and sweet potato, are delicious and crispy and come with amazing mayo-based dips, one flavored with truffle and Parmesan, the other with horseradish, who needs ketchup? Anyone who has attempted to make crispy sweet potato fries knows how difficult a task that can be, but hats off to The Met for pulling it off. The onion strings are also delicious, but impossible to pick up and even harder to dip in any condiment. My one complaint is the size of the fries, which are more like the ends of a normal french fry, barely the size of my pinkie, maybe you have to eat in the main dining area to get the full size.

The burgers are tasty, but a bit under-seasoned, and totally dry. How can a burger be cooked a beautiful medium-rare, but still remain dry? The mushrooms and onions get totally lost, although the cheese and buns are a nice fit. As decent as everything is, I can’t help but wonder what the regular burgers taste like. Are they the same but bigger? Do you get bigger fries in the main dining area? Is the service better? For $5 you get a smallish but relatively tasty burger, but it’ll cost you more if you want fries, which places the price around $12 per person, which is no deal. Maybe not a bad option to meet friends after work, sample a few burgers, have a cocktail, but if you’re looking for a superb burger option, keep looking.

Overall Score: 81

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