Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Veselka – 144 2nd Ave, East Village, New York, NY, USA
South Western Burger (Bison Burger)r
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
10 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
$13.25 USD

Ever been wandering around Manhattan’s East Village at 3am craving Ukrainian food? Sure you have. With a long history and cased in 50 years of tradition, Veselka offers a dining experience that may have you waiting in line. Lucky for you they’re open 24/7, so you’ll never need to be in a rush to eat. Along with their traditional Ukrainian dishes like Pierogi and Bigos, you’ll find a selection of burgers. I opted for something a little different and went for the South Western Burger, otherwise known as the Veselka Bison Burger. Between two toasted pieces of Sesame seeded bun was the Bison meat pattie, Pepper Jack Cheese, lettuce, tomato, Chipotle Mayonnaise and a choice of either french fries or sweet potato fries. This is all accompanied by a nice and juicy pickle.

“First off, Veselka was recommended to me by the lovely Robyn from A Hamburger Today. I had walked past it earlier during my travels and thought of it as more of an quirky little restaurant with a few regulars and the odd foot traffic stopping in for a bite. Boy was I wrong. When I mentioned this place to a few Australian friends living in NYC, they told me how this place had been recommended to them by practically everyone they met when they first arrived. So its fair to say Veselka has quite the reputation amongst New Yorkers. Having Polish heritage and growing up on Pierogi and Bigos, I’m naturally a little bit blazé when it comes to Eastern European dining. But when I heard they were offering up a Bison burger, I got excited.
I ordered my burger medium-rare (sadly they cooked it medium) and with a side of sweet potato fries. When it came out, the lettuce, tomato and pickle were on the side and allowed you to build your own burger (a nice touch considering we’re always complaining about too much lettuce in burgers). After the dipping of a few fantastic sweet potato chips, the side of Chipotle Mayonnaise immediately met the insides of my burger. The Bison meat was lean yet juicy, but the flavour was too basic for my liking. It could have done with more seasoning. Adding a nice bite was the Pepper Jack; it was melted beautifully all over the pattie and bottom half of the bun. Overall, my first experience with Bison was good, but it just doesn’t melt in your mouth the way top-notch beef does. Next time I get back to NYC I’ll definitely be stopping by to try their Cheeseburger. I might even go at 3am.”

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