Archive for July, 2010

Common Ground

July 27th, 2010 by Richard Chudy

Wow, so many things I hate about burgers all rolled up into one package at Common Ground in Allston, yet they still manage to pull off a nearly fantastic burger. Brioche, un-melted cheese, and char-grilled all manage to sneak their way onto the menu and into the burger and I’m still won over. Brioche is almost always a huge offense for me, but it’s worked at least once before (Eastern Standard) and it works here. Clearly an Iggy’s, topped with black pepper, it’s almost the perfect complement to the beefy grilled burger, still a few remaining bites of bread to be considered well thought out, but a good match overall. Brioche is usually a failure because a: too much bread for not enough meat, b: too rich and airy when it needs to be just the opposite, or c: all of the above. The bun at Common Ground isn’t perfect, it’s not my ideal, but the size of the patty needs a large bun or those juices wouldn’t stand a chance. And this one is juicy, not overly-so, but juicy, it’s cooked much more on the rare side than anything, spots of raw really, but I like that, it’s seasoned well, bursting with saltiness and charred flavor from start to finish. continue reading »

b.good

July 21st, 2010 by Richard Chudy

I applaud b.good in many respects, using impeccably fresh, local sources is important, the passion is in their story, it’s all over the walls of the restaurant, and I truly believe they feel they are making a difference in the food community. I just wasn’t sure how the burgers would taste though, can a “healthier burger” taste good? Well, no, at least not this one. It’s not bad, and I’m not even sure it’s that healthy, just a smaller portion. It certainly tastes like a regular old burger, just a leaner cut, with zero flavor and hence zero seasonings. continue reading »

Lee’s Burger Place

July 20th, 2010 by Richard Chudy

The artist formerly known as Flippin’ Burgers is now Lee’s Burger Place, or at least has been for a little less than a year. I still have yet to learn the correct information regarding the ownership, is it the same as before, partly different or a complete overhaul? At first glance it appears to be more or less the same place, with a few new items on the menu (namely subs) but a familiar West-Coast style burger. The focus is still burgers, done simply and prepared quickly, I was in and out in under twenty-five minutes, call it fast-food if you will (I will) and realize that with an interior so small, it has to be fast-food. I loved Flippin’ Burgers, it was beefy, the perfect size, affordable and downright delicious. Lee’s is almost identical in every way, except for two major flaws, the beef and the fries. continue reading »

The Druid

July 15th, 2010 by Richard Chudy

The Druid should have been the one, a charming, small Irish pub with a cult following with an even better burger. But I’m not sure they even know the difference between meatloaf and a burger, just because beef is formed into a patty and slapped between a bun doesn’t mean you can call it a burger. No, season it with anything besides salt and pepper, in this case ginger and what tasted like stale dry herbs, then we’re talking meatloaf. All we’re missing is a ketchup glaze and some mashed potatoes to finish it all off. And I was hungry too, joking at the table before we ate, I declared I was so hungry I was bound to give a favorable review. Not so fast, as some amateur mistakes, burger purism aside, really stood out. The first major offense was the un-melted cheese, so tired of this, it’s very lazy and shows no effort.¬† I’d almost be more okay with raw, but when you borderline attempt to melt cheese, where it’s plasticky and a textural nightmare, it’s a major fail. A cold bun, which was too big anyway, adds to my grievances. continue reading »

Just Curious

July 7th, 2010 by Richard Chudy

Is there such a thing as a butcher that meets the following criteria:

-is not as asshole

-is affordable

-has good quality meat

-is cooperative and willing to make custom blends/orders?

Based on past experiences, I’d say no, please tell me otherwise.

Highland Kitchen

July 2nd, 2010 by Richard Chudy

I was grumpy last night, not for any particular reason, more of a looking to complain about something kind of a night. But those who know me, well, it was pretty much business as usual, no surprises here. My dining companions feared that I hated the burger before I even tried it, but just to prove them wrong, I loved it. Let’s be clear, I loved the burger, but nothing else on that plate was enjoyable. Highland Kitchen, slightly out my comfort zone in Somerville, has a very similar vibe to Trina’s Starlite Lounge, another Somerville establishment. Both are eerily identical in terms of style, substance, and ambiance, attracting local hipsters and bitter chefs from Watertown. I was turned off by poor customer service over the phone, (no reservations for parties less than six?) a twenty-minute wait on a Thursday night, and a menu that just couldn’t seem to make up it’s mind. (are you Southern or not? I don’t get it) Honestly, I couldn’t wait to dislike the food, because it would have been oh-so-fun to review, but that burger was just too damn good. continue reading »