Billy Goat Tavern

Monday, December 15, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-BillyGoatTavern

Billy Goat Tavern – 2700 East Grand Avenue, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Burger:
Double Cheezborger
Serviettes:
1
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
5 minutes
Would we recommend:
Don’t expect much
Price:
$4.55 USD
Summary

This Chicago institution dates back to 1934 when a young Greek immigrant named William “Billy Goat” Sianis bought the Lincoln Tavern for $205. Yes, there was a goat, and it (and its descendants) became the mascots. If you’re a classic SNL fan then you’re probably familiar with the Olympia Restaurant skit. If you don’t know it then check it out later because it’s features half the Ghostbusters and Cheezborgers! You see, Bill Murray and John Belushi (also in the skit) used to spend a whole lot of time in Chicago, so it was only right for them to eat at the most famous burger joint in town; Billy Goat Tavern. They loved the place so much they wrote a skit with Don Novello about the very-particular order method and the new to USA wait staff. Don’t try and order fries, only “cheeps”. There’s no coke, only pepsi. You can see these signs still around today the place. If you’re a burger geek then your choices are simple: Single Cheezborger, Double Cheezborger, Triple Cheezborger and then the Homerun (x4 patties). They do other kinds of sandwiches and dogs but you’re really not there for them. These world-famous burgers have allowed them to open over 9 locations in the city and led me to their Navy Pier location where basically, a boardwalk meets Luna Park style attractions. My Double Cheezborger came on a freshly baked Kaiser bun with two “designed to be stacked” patties and double cheez. No fries, only cheeps.

Comments
“I first saw the skit when we first started the blog. Little did I know it was based on real life. Went down the pier expecting to see tourists all over this place, but as it turned out, they were everywhere but the Tavern. The burger, made right in front of you as you line up at the counter, was really just a fancy cheese burger. Super simplified but fancier. I didn’t believe that’s the same bun they were using back in the old days. But I do buy that those fatty patties and cheese are the same recipe. I was only passing through but I can see the appeal of this kind of burger when watching “da Bulls” and downing a whole lot of beer. It’s not the kind of meal you walk a million blocks to try and find (like I did) but it isn’t bad. It was a quick, really soft and cheesy experience. But I think the hype sort of ruined it for me. Next time I’d clear my schedule, order a jug and a Triple, and settle in.


The Grosvenor Hotel

Thursday, December 4, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-Grosvenor

The Grosvenor Hotel – 10 Brighton Rd, St Kilda East, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
The Grosvenor
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
8 minutes
Would we recommend:
Don’t expect much
Price:
$22
Summary

The Grosvenor is an establishment that runs all the way back to the late 1800s. It’s seen it’s fair share of locals, but it’s probably getting some attention from near and far these days ever since they remodelled in 2011, and since former owner of the famous Albert Park “The Point” took over. As much as owner Rabih Yanni may claim he wants a good simple pub, he’s doing things that go beyond the norm of a local watering hole. When you walk in you’re greeted with something that you’d be more used to seeing in a ritzy steakhouse like Rockpool – a display case of dry aged meats of different cuts. But then they go and offer a Parma night and Trivia night, which seem totally at home at a pub that’s connected to a Bottle Shop. It may be a little inconsistent but it’s a classy looking place that offers almost something for everyone. From their Steak nights to Trivia or a selection of burgers each going for $22. I strolled in one particular Sunday and ordered their namesake, The Grosvenor burger that came with a Dry Aged Angus beef patty, cheese, smokey bacon, lettuce, tomato, pickles all on a soft and sweet seeded bun.

Comments
“It was as if they said to themselves, “We have to put something expensive on the menu”, and went for this. It was OK at best. I don’t like a burger that’s fancy for the sake of it. It really doesn’t need to be that way. I walked in and there was meat hanging up like in a butcher, that made me think this place must be proud of their beef. So it led me to try the patty on its own and that was actually good! It was fatty, had a nice thick texture and had a touch of saltiness. I could tell there was some quality there, but they drowned it in plenty of unnecessary sauce. It’s a shame because this could be a decent burger if it were simplified.”
Grosvenor Hotel on Urbanspoon


Mr Scruff’s

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-MrScruff

Mr Scruff’s – 60 Smith St, Collingwood, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Double Beef Burger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
19 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$11
Summary

Imagine it’s past your bed time, it’s any day but Monday and you need good food and liquor. Smith Street Collingwood has an offering for you that is surprisingly unpretentious and non-conceptual. That is, unless their concept is to cater for locals with a whopping beer garden and nothing on the food menu over $11. There’s a few different rooms to park your bum but what’s common to them all is the street art all over the walls, which goes hand in hand with the street food inspired menu. If you’re not into burgers: A)why are you reading this?, and B) there’s souvlaki and tacos that can accompany your drink of choice. Whoever Mr Scruff it’s clear he wants visitors to have a boogie, burger and a beer all for a seriously good price; just check out some of their cocktail and jug specials! We went for their burger, normally $9 and added an extra beef patty – it came with Cheese, lettuce, Mr Scruff’s Special Sauce, pickles and onion on a seeded brioche-style bun.

Comments
“Seeing a burger in Melbourne under $10 is becoming a rare occurrence nowadays so we figured it must be pretty small; how wrong we were. Not that I’m complaining, but a single patty would more than suffice. The beef was super juicy with a nice crumble to it, which the creamy cheese managed to intertwine with perfectly. A really great crunch and sharp flavour was provided by the pickle and onion with the ‘Scruffs Special Sauce’ complimenting everything really well and, the Brioche bun did its best to hold on until the end. For the price, this has to be one of the best value burgers in Melbourne at the moment.”
“Walking into the place I really didn’t know what to expect. What looked like a trendy/hipster bar with no kitchen in site and food aroma in the air I thought maybe we were going for some pre-burger drinks. That was not the case. What I was greeted with was a great tasting, juicy patty with heaps of melted cheese, mayo and a lovely addition of pickles. The lettuce and all that green stuff was kept at a minimum. I felt compelled to add another pattie for an extra $2. Overall it was a great value burger, even if you wanted to go for a single pattie. Chips were more’ish.”
“We opted for the double. Why not right? For 11$ we figured it would’ve been on the smaller side. Wrong. It was so soft when I bit in. The cheese was ridiculous and the patty was pink and juicy. Damnit, every bite was really was good. There was a Big Macness that I liked but the pickles I think, didn’t need to be so fancy. Straight up Maccas pickles would’ve been just fine. The bun fell apart a bit but I could live with it on this occasion. Bonus points on the chips because they were dynamite.”
Mr Scruff's on Urbanspoon


Chur Burger

Monday, July 28, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-ChurrBurger

Chur Burger – 48 Albion Street,
Surry Hills, New South Wales, Australia
Burger:
Beef Burger
Serviettes:
1
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
7 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$10
Summary

If you’re unfamiliar with native New-Zealand-ish then “Chur” is just another made up word that you and your friends will argue about, end up on Google, then call your favourite NZ buddy to confirm. You see, Warren Turnbull, former fine dining chef, is a NZer and the only way he wanted to describe the mouth-watering burgers he was creating was “Chur!”. What us Aussie’smight call “Ripper”. After a fire in the original hole in the wall burger joint that was Chur Burger, he set up shop in Surry Hills in a larger space offering a larger selection of burgers, chips and “drank”. He has seen so much success for his burgers that there are now four Sydney locations and another opening up pretty soon in Brisbane. Collaborating with fellow countryman and designer, Scrap Wall, their Surry Hills location seats plenty, has a bit of a found/industrial art vibe to and is the kind of place you can spill a drink and noone will bat an eye. They do milkshakes, fries and a bunch of different burgers that cater for all walks of life. Cooked medium-rare, I went for the classic Beef Burger that came on a brioche bun with a beef patty, cheese, tomato jam, mustard mayo, pickle – simple.

Comments
“I’ll admit it. I’m one of those contrarians that hates hype. And, from the countless emails we’ve received, there was plenty of hype about Chur. I was in Sydney on a tight schedule and I knew I had to make my way round to see what all the fuss was about. Their brioche bun wasn’t overly sweet (which is a nice change) but I would’ve preferred something a little softer. As I bit in to the patty I noticed it was nice and fatty, but with bits of gristle in it I started to fall less in love with it. Having read that they served medium rare as a standard I was let down by the grey pattie that had been left on the grill a little too long. Halfway down something happened. The burger changed. This was the delicious pink I was looking for. It stepped up so quickly. Why was it so uneven though? If you’re a regular here you’ll know that I’m keen as mustard for mayonnaise in a burger, but this was overkill. I feel like Chur Burger started out as this delicious burger joint where tender love and care were put into making every single burger a work of art. Now with the popularity and expansion I imagine it’s harder to control the quality (as we’ve seen in other Melbourne burger joints). The framework of an stand-out burger is still there. It was just missing the key ingredient: love (single tear).”
Chur Burger on Urbanspoon


Le Bon Ton

Tuesday, June 3, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-LeBonTon

Le Bon Ton – 51 Gipps St, Collingwood, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Grilled Wagyu Cheeseburger
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
8 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$16
Summary

‘Le Bon Ton’ derives its name from a common toast heard in the local roadside bars, oyster houses, crab shacks and BBQ joints of the Louisiana countryside. Inside the former Glasshouse Hotel you’ll find plenty of exposed brick, ornate ceilings adorned with chandeliers and some very heavy timber tables. As you’d expect from a Southern cocktail menu it features traditional ingredients like sweat tea, peaches, fresh mint and a range of Absinthe. The kitchen, headed up by two American brothers gets serious with dishes and cooking techniques drawn from multiple regions of the American South like oysters, pit smoked meats, crab cakes, fried chicken, burgers and pies for dessert. We ordered the Grilled Wagyu Cheeseburger that came with a 150g Wagyu patty, crispy bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion, ketchup and mayo.

Comments
“The crispy piece of bacon popping out the glistening bun like a turtles head was the first thing that caught my eye. Then and there I could already tell it was going to be great. The beef patty, although nicely charred, was super soft and crumbly and paired really well with the creamy cheese. The bun had been lightly toasted on one side, giving it enough of a barrier to not be completely dissolved by the juices. The only crunchy texture came from the bacon and lettuce, and to top it all off my favourite sauce combo of ketchup and mayo made for a memorable burger.”
“It’s one of those burgers that keeps you coming back for more. Simple in flavour and presentation this burger ticked all my boxes. The beautifully delicate patty was sweet and smokey that was perfectly balanced by condiments. The sweet bun held the right amount of moisture from the patty and sauce and was easy to handle. To top things off the fries were awesome! On a side note the menu was full of some southern gems like brisket and American style pies. Definitely going back!”
“What a burger! Just like all the exceptional burgers I’ve had before this, the patty was the highlight. It was fatty, soft and salty. Their smokey (a touch spicy) sauce was divine. A delightful brioche bun topped off one of my new favourites in town.”
Le Bon Ton on Urbanspoon


The Botanical

Tuesday, March 11, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-Botanical

The Botanical – 169 Domain Rd, South Yarra,
Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Cheeseburger & French Fries
Serviettes:
1
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
5 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$13
Summary

The Botanical, or simply ‘The Bot’ as it’s commonly referred to by the locals, is a Melbourne institution located opposite the Botanical Gardens. The Botanical truly is a multi-faceted venue offering a formal dining room, informal wine store and cafe, a less formal bar and lounge, a courtyard and options for private events. The rear bar has its own menu available 7 nights a week, ideally suited to match your drink of choice, with live music on Wednesday and Sunday nights. Being an almost perfect balmy summer night, we grabbed a seat in the olive-tree lined courtyard, grabbed a beer and ordered the Cheeseburger & French Fries with lettuce, tomato, pickle and tomato chutney.

Comments
“This is my absolute favourite quiet pocket of Melbourne. I was glad to visit here in normal clothes as opposed to walking past huffing, puffing and sweating after running the Tan. Anyway, the burger came out fairly quickly, neatly presented with a heavy mug of fries, and as you’d expect with the price, wasn’t very big, but everything was in proportion. The chutney on both sides of the bun added a sweetness to each bite, which blended well with the juicy patty and salty pickles. This burger is ideal to accompany an afternoon of drinking, and will just hit the spot without leaving you bloated.”
“The stand-out for me was the great value you get for $13, which is a perfect lunch option for those carnivores that don’t want to settle for a salad. This burger is compact with a fresh crusty bun that’s very easy to palm and holds a nice thick juicy pattie surrounded by melted cheese and a double layer of home made sauce. For those sweet and tangy flavours the tomato and pickle have done their job and the cos lettuce keeps everything fresh and honest. Overall it’s a very simple burger at minimum cost that includes a bowl of awesome shoestring fries.”
“I was a little underwhelmed when the burger arrived. It was on the small side and came out just a little too quickly. I didn’t think there’d be much to it. However, it was decent. The meat was juicy and sweet, but I wanted it to be meatier/beefier. Maybe it was just the fact that the lightly spiced tomato ketchup took over most of the flavours. The bun was actually my favourite thing about the burger: a crusty Kaiser almost. I liked this burger but I wasn’t in love. These guys could charge close to $20 for this and people would pay it. Props for not being greedy.”
The Botanical on Urbanspoon


Warburger

Wednesday, November 6, 2013
The-Burger-Adventure_Warburger_Poland

Warburger – Cr Puławska & Dąbrowskiego, Mokotów, Warsaw, Poland
Burger:
Cheeseburger
Serviettes:
4
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
10 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
19PLN/$6.45 AUD
Summary

Whenever you’re in a new country it’s always recommended to go and eat where the locals eat. Thanks to the burger craze hitting Poland over the last couple of years, at Warburger you’ll be right at home tucking into a hamburger side-by-side with genuine Polaks. The guys behind the burger wheeling kiosk were looking to provide locals with a decent alternative to the swamp of kebab shops across Poland. For owners Adam and Bartek, it was important to show the good-folk of Poland that a hamburger wasnt just a measley piece of minced meat between some bread. So they went about sourcing all local produce, baking their own buns and branching out into different styles of burgers including a range of gourmet twists on the classics, as well as a venison burger. The venue itself only has space for a handful of people, but on a warm day you won’t have a worry in the world because it’s surrounded by park benches and shady trees. Unlucky for me it was a rainy summer’s day so I sat under cover waiting for my Cheeseburger that came out on a buttermilk bun, with a 100% Polish beef pattie, Mimolette cheese, tomato, lettuce and red onion. Purely because I could, as I walked out I helped myself to one of their free apples available to the customers.

Comments
“Seeing the kiosk popping up out of a grassy, little reserve gave the whole establishment a kind of early day Shake Shack vibe. Locals told me that this place was pretty popular and the wait time might be over 40 minutes. However, lucky for me, with Polish holidays in full swing and rain coming in sideways I only waited 35 – and not because it was particularly busy. Once I got my burger and bit in I got a surprise; there was nothing fantastic about it! The pattie was nicely salted but I really only tasted any beefiness when I tried it on its own. The buttermilk bun was on the sweet side but still a nice change from brioche. Overall it was decent feed but if were to go back I’d be trying their seasonal or more experimental burgers.”