Tag Archives: burgers

Quick Dinner.

Due to an unfortunate case of cooking-related masochism, I tend to forget that not every meal requires hours of preparation and compilation. It took a recent experience to remind me of something that working parents have known for years: Weeknight dinners do not, in fact, need to be served at 10:00 p.m.

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After a particularly demanding day in the trenches, I was in the mood for something indulgent; I didn’t have the budget for anything fancy but wanted comfort food nonetheless. This burger, an umami*-rich combination of Italian sausage (I used half hot and half sweet, with great results), anchovy-spiked spinach, and sharp provolone cheese, couldn’t have been a better fit.

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A Dynamic Transformation.

When the folks at Dragonfly Neo-V announced late last year that they’d be changing their concept, I have to admit that I was overwhelmed by everything they claimed Till Dynamic Fare would become. They’d serve cask beers and wine on tap, but grown-up cocktails as well. Biodynamic burgers would live peacefully on the menu beside their celebrated classic vegan fare. And their target audience would grow immensely. No longer would they primarily serve vegans with extra pocket change; Till would become a place to bring your kids, your best friend, your grandmother.

The changes — dramatic and subtle — worked. I’d dined at the original restaurant twice in eleven years. (Don’t judge!) Now that Till’s in town, I’ve been twice in three months. And I can see myself going again, soon.

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Burger Wars.

What to say about New York’s seemingly endless fascination with finding the city’s best burger that hasn’t already been said? I haven’t contributed much to the discussion myself—I’m more of a dilettante than anything else—but I do keep up with it, maintaining a running list of contenders to try.

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Since I moved here eight-plus years ago, there’s been one spot on or near the top of almost every best-of I’ve read: Peter Luger. Located in Williamsburg, with the burger only offered at lunchtime, it’s not the easiest place to cross off the list. Or so I thought. The Carnivore and I had some midday free time on our hands last week and decided to put it to good use; we hopped on the B44 bus, and no more than 15 minutes later, we were walking into the restaurant.

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Writing on the Wall.

When I lived in Grandview, I’d always bypass the Starbucks a few blocks from my house to go to Columbus’ own Stauf’s a mile away. I chose Stauf’s because it was a place to people watch, but also because it was locally owned. Others must have done the same, because the Starbucks Building on 5th Avenue is no longer inhabited by Starbucks. My first time in the building was this past weekend. And, well, it’s had a bit of a transformation.

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Shea-ke Shack.

It’s tantamount to blasphemy for a food-obsessed New Yorker to admit this, but I’ve never eaten at the original Shake Shack in Madison Square Park. The lines have been monstrous every time I’ve stopped by, and after spending ten minutes or so in a barely moving queue, I’ve thrown in the towel and walked away. There was no way the burgers could be worth that kind of stress.

However. I’m willing to admit I might’ve been wrong.

My friend Nicole had an extra ticket to last Wednesday afternoon’s Mets game, and I couldn’t turn it down: I wasn’t working, it was a perfect day for baseball (warm sun, cool breeze, clear sky), and I’d been drooling over write-ups of the food options at the new stadium—technically named Citi Field, but never referred to as anything but Shea by most fans—for months now.

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We swung by the Shake Shack outpost at the bottom of the third inning and were back in our seats, burgers, fries, and beers in hand, by the top of the fifth. Given that it took some time to get back to the nosebleed section and that both teams were blazing through those innings, it really wasn’t a bad wait. And, after my first bite, I realized that it would’ve been time well-spent even at twice that long.

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