Hooters

Friday, October 3, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-Hooters
Hooters – 6922 Hollywood Blvd, Suite 109, Hollywood, California, USA
Burger:
Hooters Cheeseburger
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
10 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$12.08 USD
Summary

On April Fools Day 1983, six men sat in Clearwater, Florida, talking about a business prospect. They chose this day as a joke because they figured their idea was destined for failure. Decades on and many tight shorts later, Hooters is a booming enterprise. Half sports bar, half breastaurant, Hooters is still an all-American family friendly venue that has “good times on tap”. Making a name for themselves for their super smiley Hooters girls and spicy chicken wings has lead Hooters to open 430 locations all over the world all the way from Tokyo to Prague. At 11.30am along the Hollywood Walk of Fame, I looked forward to escaping the California sun and diving into a cold beer and juicy hamburger. Just like their waitresses, the burgers come in different shapes and sizes, but I opted for the classic Hooters Cheeseburger. In between a soft traditional burger bun was a medium cooked beef pattie, American cheese, onions, lettuce, tomato and ketchup and mustard left on the side to add as I pleased. I couldn’t decide between the Curly Fries or Tater Tots, so I just got both.

Comments
“Forget about the plunging neck lines and ass-cheek-revealing shorts. The experience at Hooters is delightful. If you’re in a terrible mood their staff will be sure to cheer you up in a jiffy. The Hooters girls’ positivity and bubbliness rubs off, and surprisingly not in a sleazy way. Floor staff aside, the food is the real reason for my visit. The Cheeseburger was pure Americana with its dripping cheese and super soft bite, but it wasn’t anything amazing. The patty was OK on its own, but when combined with the raw onions it made for a meaty, salty treat. I like that the burger didn’t come with sauce because these guys appreciate everyone likes something different squirted on their buns. They know that they’re not gourmet so they don’t try to be. I was recommended to try my burger cooked medium but should’ve gone medium-rare to get a bit more juice. Overall, a really lovely experience. Beers as big as your head, burgers and super friendly staff. What more could you want?”


Ripponlea Food and Wine

Tuesday, September 9, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-Ripponlea

Ripponlea Food and Wine – 5 Glen Eira Road,
Ripponlea, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Wagyu beef burger
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
17 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$24.90
Summary

Located opposite Ripponlea train station this little restaurant will charm the pants off you with its friendly staff, open kitchen and a comforting food menu, making you feel like you’re at your Mama’s house for dinner. There is something quite soothing about the how the heat from the kitchen enters the dining area with its white tiled walls and dark timber seating giving you a warm sense of familiarity. We went for the Wagyu beef burger that came with mustard, crispy bacon, tomato, cornichons, smoked cheddar with a side of fries and habanero mayo.

Comments
“I knew straight away I was going to turn this into a massive mess so to try and minimise the impact I decided to cut it in half. First thing that really stood out was the height and size of the patty, it had a really crumbly texture and plenty of herbs mixed through for flavour. Due to the size, it was cooked fairly well which left it fairly dry. Then, combined with the dry and flakey bun you really began to notice the lack of juice. The melted cheese and crispy bacon obviously helped the burger, however the thick chunks of tomato and pickle didn’t compliment at all.”
“From a place that had some great simple comforting food I had an expectation the burger would be OK and to a degree I think it was. The pattie was rustic and rissole-like with some great tasting characteristics and cooked to perfection. The bun though, didn’t keep its integrity throughout the meal. The mayo was really good with the chips. The one thing I didn’t like was the amount of greens – too much!”
Ripponlea Food & Wine on Urbanspoon


Big Mouth

Sunday, August 24, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-BigMouth

Big Mouth – 168 Acland St, St Kilda, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Big Mouth Burger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
15 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in area
Price:
$21
Summary

They probably read about it in Lonely Planet, but there’s good reason tourists flock to St Kilda all year round. They might deter some of the more “refined” Melbournians, but chances are most of us, at one point or another have taken a stroll down Acland St for a drink or bite to eat. Sitting at the top of the busy street is an Big Mouth. The Art Deco building has played very different roles since its opening in 1938: a second hand furniture store, a cabaret, a band room, reception centre, Russian ball room and a wax museum. But now, as it stands the bar/restaurant/nightclub caters for all kinds of folk, whether its for a big night or a big steak. We sat in one of their dining rooms and ordered the Big Mouth Burger that came with an Angus pattie, Monterey Jack, sweet pickles, pickled onion, chipotle aioli & fries.

Comments
“I really didn’t enjoy this burger experience, it was hard work with some overbearing flavours and texture. First of all it’s an extremely dark restaurant, which isn’t helped when the burger is served on a long skinny plank of wood added to the challenge. The bun was a very crusty, dry kaiser roll, with very little give in it, creating a giant crumbly mess, which didn’t pair very well with the domineering sweet pickles and pickled onions. The beef patty, when eaten on its own was delicious and juicy, however with nothing to absorb and trap the flavour in, just ended up adding to the mess.”
“The patty was cooked OK however it did taste a bit garlicky for my liking, but with the ever so creamy combination of Jack cheese and mayo it quickly regained points in my book. Looking at all the other burgers my burger comrades ordered it seemed that the kitchen was having an inconsistent night. As much as I liked the bun I really could have done with less bread in my diet that day. Rather than including the greens in my burger and just saved them later for a fresher-upped for the palette.”
“On paper this was right up my alley. It came out deconstructed and I wasn’t sure what for: pure laziness or they wanted to add as much greenery as you like. I went for none of that. There were great hints of creaminess and plenty of crunch from the crusty kaiser. It was hard to tell where it was actually coming from but garlic was apparent all around this burger. It was great. Not over powering or anything, it just lingered around. The patty was soft and salty and the chipotle aoili rounded out each bite with some spice. The pickled onions also provided a nice tang and I’m glad weren’t of the Zuni variety for a change. I think I really liked this burger. I reckon 21 bucks was a smidge steep though (mainly because of lack of chips).”
Big Mouth on Urbanspoon


The Palace Hotel

Tuesday, April 8, 2014
TheBurgerAdventure-PalaceHotel

The Palace Hotel – 505 City Rd, South Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
Beef burger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
10 minutes
Would we recommend:
Don’t expect much
Price:
$20
Summary

The Palace Hotel has done what most places don’t: down-scaled the fancy. What was once a rather slow paced gastropub that catered to empty nesters with a a disposable income has now become a chilled out, pet friendly local. Proprietors Jess, Pratty and Dan welcome everyone down for a low-key night whenever you’re in the mood for a Draught and can’t be bothered cooking. There mascot and pet, Billy the Staffy can be seen running around getting up to mischief, but he’s only looking for a pat and isn’t one to say no to a dropped chip. Although less fancy than before, their menu still offers some on-trend dishes like pulled pork and buffalo wings but there is still the option of a traditional pie and classic parma. We went for the Beef burger that came on seeded bun with a beef patty, tomato, lettuce, cheese with a side of pickles and French fries.

Comments
“The venue is barely recognisable from it’s previous existence and I can sense the current owners are trying to turn it back into a classic local pub. To the naked eye there was nothing fancy or experimental about the burger, with everything being your stock standard burger ingredients. That is, until you bit into the extremely thick, spicy, chilli flaked beef patty. It felt out of place and dwarfed all other flavours, and due to the size, had been cooked for a while leaving parts of it really dry. Highlight of the night was getting to meet and pat the local resident dog, Billy.”
“Visually this burger looked to have each of my boxes checked. The bun was fluffy, the melted cheese looked amazing on the pattie and the mustard with the pickle looked to keep everything balanced. Just like my disappointment on Christmas day when my parents decided to buy me encyclopedia Britannica instead of the Lego Police Station I wanted, that same level of disappointment came rushing back when biting into that pattie. Like my parents that year the chef chose to do something different from normal convention. In his case he tried to distinguish the burger by what I call “misusing beef” by making it super dense and sticking a whole heap of unnecessary ingredients like chilli and mustard seeds. And just like I told my parents back then, I repeated the words again to my fellow diners on this occasion, “Can we return it?”. Unfortunately in my case I had pretty much consumed half of the burger and would feel a bit awkward returning it at that point, but the pain and disappointment was there folks. I would like to try this burger again when (or if) the powers at be change their recipe, I think there is huge untapped potential here. Shoestring fries were awesome.”
“Now, at first glance this looked pretty good. It had everything I really like in a burger, down to the side of pickles and French fries. That first spicy bite raised my eyebrows and made me say “Wow”. I was not expecting any spice to it all. The patty was finely minced, it had little bit of fat and plenty of spice. It wasn’t the kind of spice that burnt though – far from it. It was just that it was the dominating flavour in the burger. It took over any, saltiness or beefy goodness that the patty had to offer. And for 20 bucks you’re getting screwed. This burger has so much potential here too. K.I.S.S.”
The Palace Hotel on Urbanspoon


Humburger

Friday, February 7, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-Humburger

Humburger – 789 Glenferrie Rd, Hawthorn, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
New York
Serviettes:
4
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
20 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$13
Summary

Located towards the northern end of the Glenferrie Rd shopping strip, Humburger recently opened with a contemporary, modern interior fit out featuring exposed white bricks, cow hide stools, neon lights and mirrors. With ample dining options including inside, outside and courtyard seating, it’s an ideal place to grab a bite to eat regardless of time or weather. With 5 different beef burgers, a chicken and a vegetarian on offer, there’s a burger to suit everyones taste. We went with the ‘New York’ burger with 2 beef patties, bacon, cheddar cheese, Emmental cheese, pickles, mayo and tomato sauce. You can wash it all down with either something alcoholic or a milk shake, and if you’re still not full by the end, the humballs are delicious for dessert.

Comments
“I’m surprised this didn’t fall over by the time it reached us, as it was delicately placed together with everything neatly piled high. What looked like something that would turn into an incredible mess, actually squashed down into something manageable, with plenty of juice squirting all over my strategically placed fries. The beef was a lot more tender than I expected and with 2 patties there was plenty of beefy flavour, with subtle hints of pickle and salty bacon coming through. The bun held up well for a while but had almost disappeared by the end.”
“Humburger feels a little more like more of a bar than a burger joint. Walking up to the counter the friendly staff look like hipster bartenders that will mix you a good drink, but surprisingly they are only interested in your burger order. The pattie was beautifully cooked and just crumbled in my mouth. The sweet bun was fresh and a delight to bite into. The other highlight was the exquisite bacon and the super runny cheese that reminded of the kind you’d get on a pizza. The burger was a little hard to manage but the payload is good, so persevere with the juice going down your hands and enjoy yourself.”
“This was a delicious start to 2014 for me. The first bite was initially soft and fluffy, but by the time I bit all the way in, I was chewing fresh crunchy pickles. The patties were cooked just a little bit pink and felt like the mince had been ground with a fine mincer – they were tightly bound, but it still worked for them. A nice sweeteness lingered during the meal; I can only imagine that the majority came from thee sauce and grilled onions. This is a very simple burger that’s really worth while. Best option in the area for sure.”
Humburger on Urbanspoon


Shake Shack, Dubai

Monday, December 23, 2013
The-Burger-Adventure_ShakeShackDubai

Shake Shack – West Food Court, Mall of the Emirates, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Burger:
Shack Burger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
8 minutes
Would we recommend:
Go Now!
Price:
25AED/$7.60 AUD
Summary

When you happen to visit one the most arid, terribly hot places in the world, the best place to hang is a mall where you can enjoy luxury shopping, skiing and one of the world’s most famous burgers. Opening in 2011, Shake Shack Dubai was the first of many of its international locations (now in Turkey, UK and Russia) and ever since day one they’ve always had queues. If you aren’t aware of Shake Shack’s infamy, you can read more from D’s NYC review here, but they’ve come a long way since starting out as a humble hot dog stand in NYC. I took my place in line, watched the workhorse that is the Shake Shack kitchen do their thing and eventually got to order the Shack Burger that came with a 100% Angus beef pattie (cooked medium), cheese, lettuce tomato and Shack Sauce all on a soft burger bun.

Comments
“Not having eaten Shake Shack in NYC, I was glad I was at least going to have a crack at its first international location. But, when hype is involved, I’m usually the first to get a little suspicious. I mean how good could this be? That first, soft and meaty bite was enough to tell me everything I needed to know. The pattie was oh so right: a little bit charred on the outside and so soft on the in. It’s got a certain beefy saltiness with a smidge of pepper that I don’t believe I’ve ever tasted before. Whether it’s their cows or meat blends I don’t know, but this and their Shack Sauce is (just one) reason why people love it. The next thing I noticed is that these guys don’t cut their bun all the way through. How damn smart! A cure for the inevitable burger slide. The lettuce and tomato balanced out the heavier beef quite nicely… And the bun reminded of something White Castle does with their sliders: super soft. Originally these guys started out by slinging dogs and you can see the influence in their burgers. For me the bun is basically a hot dog bun but in burger format. Give it time and I have a feeling these guys are going to take over McDonalds as the most recognised burger chain in the world. Tremendous.”


Dude Food Man

Thursday, December 19, 2013
The-Burger-Adventure_DudeFoodMan

Dude Food Man – Various Locations, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Burger:
The Dude Burger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
7 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$14
Summary

You can hardly say you’ve done it all in Melbourne until you’ve eaten from one our many food trucks. As much as some councils have tried to put the kibosh on where and when they can operate, the community has welcomed them with open arms. Relative newcomer to the scene is the Dude Food Man, who not only serves burgers but delves into other comfort foods between buns like a pulled pork slider and a Korean BBQ Beef sub. To say owner Johnny has his work cut out for him when it comes to competing for attention next to the acclaimed Mr Burger and Beatbox Kitchen is an understatement. But, with over 10 years training at places like Café Di Stasio and The Point Albert Park, sourcing only the best local ingredients, it’s no surprise The Dude Food Man has so many sell outs. On a sunny Sunday afternoon we found a spare patch of dirt at Ruckers Hill (check here for up to date locations) and ordered their signature Dude Burger that came on a brioche bun with a Wagyu pattie, lettuce, cheese, tomato, caramelised onions, pickles and aioli.

Comments
“Breaking down the cardboard box around this burger revealed an almost ideal 1:1 ratio between the size of the patty and bun. The patty was cooked perfectly, with a lovely coarse mix remaining pink on the inside, yet with the help of the crust and gooey yellow cheese completely hugging it, it managed to retain all the juice and flavour without dissolving the bun or dripping down your arm. Funnily enough, the stand out ingredient for me was the not too sour pickles that added just enough bite that enhanced the overall experience.”
“As far as food trucks go, this burger does not disappoint. The pattie was juicy, on the right side of pink, covered in cheese and had a healthy serve of mustard and pickle. The bun was great, but a bit susceptible to breaking-up while still eating. The triple cooked hand cut chips were good and super moist in the middle. The only problem I see with Dude Food is not with the burger, but with being memorable. Melbournians are spoilt for choice and the food truck business has become a very competitive category, therefore the only solution to this would be to create a more signature product on offer.”
“I eat a lot of burgers, but there’s this weird feeling that you get every now and then, when something is so damn good that you can’t help but thank a higher power. Another indication that I liked it was that it was almost all gone in under a minute. There was a lot of sweetness and saltiness in every bite, most likely from the mustard, pickle and aioli combo, but the cheese I didn’t really notice. Overall for me though, the pattie was the star, just the way it should be.”
Dude Food Man on Urbanspoon