B Street (CLOSED)

March 7th, 2013 by Richard Chudy

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Right in the thick of Newton Center lies B Street, a quasi-upscale restaurant serving lunch and dinner during the week and brunch on the weekends. I’ve been a longtime nemesis of brunch, mostly because I’m a grump, and also because I’m supposed to pay how much for a pile of pancakes? But many restaurants are now serving my beloved burger on brunch menus, which is just enough enticement to get me out of my sweatpants and into the car on a Sunday morning. Startlingly priced at $16.50, the ‘Burger Benedict’ is a 10 oz. burger with bacon, lettuce, tomato, a fried egg and an Old Bay hollandaise. The side of roasted potatoes is also hit with Old Bay, and the burger and potato combination at least sounds appealing on paper. The goal with this burger is clearly a spin on the classic eggs benedict, right down to the English Muffin bun. A 10 oz. burger is probably larger than anyone needs, especially for brunch and the B Street burger was impressive in stature, the poor English Muffin bun barely stood a chance. Russell House Tavern is the only other example I can think of that uses an English Muffin as a burger bun, and does so very successfully. Unfortunately for B Street, the burger is far too thick and heavy; it does nothing short of crushing and eventually disintegrating the poor attempt of a bun. After cutting into the burger, I am pleased to see a gorgeous medium rare center, a skill easy to overlook especially with a burger of this size. But the beef is very, very bland and is low on the juiciness scale. Could be a lack of salt, but more likely it’s a lean burger with not much to it. The bacon is limited and only offers pools of grease, although the hollandaise is pleasant and a bright aspect of the meal. My fried egg is just runny, which I like, but the plate ends up looking like a massacre of broken pieces of beef, chunks of English Muffin and a river of hollandaise and bacon grease. It’s not exactly well crafted or well executed, and structurally it’s sort of a disaster. The roasted potatoes are very scarce, ironic that they skimped on potatoes but over-did it with the amount of beef. They are very under-seasoned and I can’t detect the Old Bay whatsoever.

Messy burgers can be great, but generally speaking not a lot of thought is being put into the construction of the burger, a critical mistake. Ultimately the B Street burger is a miss because of bland beef and potatoes, a very high price tag especially considering it’s in the ‘burbs, and an English Muffin bun that could be the worst choice possible here. I hate to admit it, but a brioche bun in this situation would have been a far better choice.

Overall Score: 68

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