Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

One of the things I love to do when travelling to other countries is going to McDonald’s and testing stuff that is not on the menu in our beloved Lebanon. It’s very interesting to see that McDonald’s, while being a global firm, with restaurants in 196 countries, still manages to listen to its consumer in each market and to regularly come up with new burgers.

For example, in France, where consumers are attached to the good quality of ingredients, they have a Charolais on the menu, a burger which patty originates from a very well known breed of cattle that is raised in Charolles, FR.

I went to McDonald’s yesterday in Paris and ordered two very interesting limited edition burgers they had on the menu: the McBaguette and the Red Chilli Pepper.

Let’s start with the McBaguette. If Hamburgers were french (pronounce ham-bour-gais), they would have tasted like this. First of all, throw away the fluffy buns you’re used to, and replace them with a crispy Pain Baguette. Second, get rid of the Cheddar Cheese, you’re in France and what you want in your Hamburger is Emmental, with plenty of holes. Finally, forget about that Barbecue Sauce, you shall have  Mustard sauce in your hamburger, with a sprinkle of pepper.

While the McBaguette emerges from a very interesting concept, its execution is really bad. There’s just too much bread and mustard, so you end up chewing your burger with a strong taste of mustard, and you can not even tell the presence of the meat. Since I like the concept and I have nothing else to do with my life, I’ll probably end up doing my own McBaguette in my kitchen, and I’ll post an article about it!

After that, I had the Red Chilli Pepper. This is probably the most spicy burger I’ve had at McDonald’s. It’s a regular quarter-pounder with cheese, with the exception of peppered buns and a very hot sauce mixed with raw onions. Way too hot in my opinion, but if any french folk is reading this blog (and I know there is), please give me your opinion!

Since the beginning of summer, I have been going all around Lebanon, and probably ate three good dozens of burgers. I went to Classic Burger Joint one or two times, had mini-burgers between two vodka lemons at Sporting, tasted Burger King’s California Whooper on my way back from the beach, paid a visit to St. Elmo’s on a lazy Sunday…There is no way I could remember all of the burgers I ate this summer but I’ll definitely remember the one I had last week, simply because it was the best I had in a very long time. I am not afraid to say it, this is probably the best burger you can get in Lebanon for the fairest price.

Garage 78 St. is a bar that opened very recently on the Alleyway street in Hamra. They have open draft beer for happy hour, good music, “we like you” discounts and three Burgers on their menu. We went there, ordered 3 Almaza and each of the Burgers: The Classic Cheese, The Southwest Cajun Ranch Burger and the Sloppy Joe.

The first one is the Sloppy Joe, a mixture of ground beef, tomato and probably onions served in a hamburger bun. It constituted a good appetizer, and was priced at 15000 LBP. Enough to fill you up before starting to drink like a picky in Hamra

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Then comes the second burger,a Classic Cheese. It is made of cheddar cheese, tomatoes, fresh lettuce and a divine amount of medium-rare cooked home grounded beef (yeah that’s a lot of adjectives). The recipe is extremely simple, but the meat is extraordinary (above every piece of meat that I have tasted in Lebanon, including brgr. Co), the ingredients are fresh, and, as a result, the burger is excellent!

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The Southwest Cajun Ranch Burger is even better: Take the Classic Cheese you just ate, and add to that bacon, jalapeños, Ranch Dressing and onion rings. Considering the quality of the ingredients, as well as the perfect ratio of bun to patty (good enough to hold everything together and low enough not to encroach on the meat’s taste) and of patty to toppings, this burger is probably one of the best I have had this summer. You want to know its price? 18000 LBP. Cheaper than all of the other places justifying their high price tags for high quality meat…(you know who am I talking about)

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So bottom line. GO to Garage 78 St., on happy hour, pay 14$ for open draft beer and order the Southwest Cajun Ranch Burger, you will thank me for that. Actually, writing this post made me so hungry that I’m going there at 6. Cheers amigos!

Hello Everyone! I hope all of you burgerheads had fun this summer. I personally started my holidays last week and looking forward to the last days of sunshine in Beirut! Anyway this is not a blog about my life so we’ll go straight to today’s subject! Hot Dog & Beyond

This is a new place that opened at Le Mall Dbayeh, right next to Classic Burger Joint (talk about competition ;)).
My visit to HD&B reminded me that there is a very thin line between a Diner and a Fast-Food restaurant. HD&B is standing right on that line. The place serves mainly Hot Dogs-they have more than a dozen on the menu- but also some hamburgers, all prepared right in front of you, from their open cuisine. The price of the burger ranges from 15000 LBP for a simple chicken burger to 18750 LBP for their signature burger, including french fries and a side-salad.

The three friends that were with me ordered Chicken Burgers, Mozarella Burger and Mexican Fajita Burger. Feeling adventurous, I went for the signature burger

 

 

 

 

 

Our overall opinion on these burgers was that the sauce was really good (especially the Aioli sauce I had in the HD&B Burger), the toppings were fresh, but the meat was definitely the outsider of our the combo. We could definitely tell it was frozen and not fresh, the patty is really thin, and, when I cut a bite to taste it alone, it simply was not good. Concerning the fries, we had diverse opinions concerning them…I personally enjoyed them.

Last but not least, we ordered some BBQ Sauce and this is what our waiter came with…Now trust me I know how is a cup of BBQ sauce supposed to look/taste like, this is cocktail sauce. We asked him if he were sure that it was BBQ sauce. He very confidently answered that yes, it was BBQ sauce but mixed with ketchup (because the HP BBQ sauce was “ktiir 7ar”). If you are wondering, no they do not have BBQ Burgers.

 


So the bottom line about Hot Dog & Beyond…Well they should not have gone beyond 😉

Review: Sea Way’ Okaibe

Posted: August 23, 2012 in Reviews

Last Monday was a National Holiday in Lebanon. Free as birds, me and my friend decided to take our bicycles for some well needed exercise (when you eat so many burgers, you somewhat need to find a balance…). We rode along the sea road, and all the way to a small fishermen village called Okaibe, a few kilometers before Jbeil, where we rested at a wonderful place called “Seaway” and where I also ate a “Beach Burger” (After 25km under the sun, I could authorize myself…)

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So first of all, the beach. We felt in love with the place. The sea is very clean, the music is top (Rolling Stones, The Doors…), and the entrance fee is only 10000 LBP. A very Batroun-like beach that is yet closer to Beirut.
Now after 25km on a bike, what can be more rewarding than a good Hamburger. For 6500 LBP, they offer the Beach Burger. It is very Lebanese (i.e. full of coleslaw) and was cooked right in front of me. I added a slice of cheddar, requested some tomatoes and voila. My Burger on the beach, with a bottle of Almaza, we’ve got a winning combo over here. Even though the meat was frozen, and the burger had nothing spectacular, the atmosphere and my hunger state made it a great experience. Will definitely come back

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It can happen sometimes that we have something very special to celebrate that we want our lunch to fit the occasion. Having recently graduated, I found this event to be a good excuse for having a little gourmet burger. I have been hearing recently about a 240g (8 oz.) meat patty being flipped at Cro Magnon, Zaytuna Bay’s renown steakhouse. They offer this burger only for lunch, and it is part of a three-courses menu, served for 67500 LBP.

The Burger served at Cro Magnon is called the black burger: 240g of black angus meat, stuffed with emmental and cheddar. Add to this wild greens, trap all of the above between two brown mutli-grain buns and you’ve got Cro Magnon’s noble burger: the black burger

 

I ordered the black burger to my preference, medium rare. After a good 20 minutes of waiting, comes an impressively huge burger, along with golden french fries, ketchup and mustard sauce. The meat’s savor, disseminating over the lower bun, could not do anything but captivate our taste buds. I also enjoyed the hot peppery flavor that was  coming out of the burger. However, it was not specified on the menu, and if one doesn’t like hot flavors, he will definitely be disappointed by this burger.

The bottom line is that Cro Magnon’s black burger is definitely a great burger, for any of your special occasion, may it be a selfish pleasure, a celebration or a business lunch. Considering the fact that the price includes a starter and a dessert, it is not that expensive. In a better world, the black burger would include a greater choice of additional toppings, such as grilled onions, sauteed mushrooms or another kind of cheese…

Cro Magnon’s Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/cromagnonsteakhouse

BRGR Co. has been on the list of Burgers I wanted to review on this blog for a long time. However, I was very busy in the past months and did not have the time to grab a bite of their Black Angus burger. Well, as the saying goes, “Good things come to those who wait”, I received an email from the BRGR Co. team inviting me to come for lunch.

The restaurant’s menu is prepared by Chef Hussein Hadid. They offer 3 sizes of Beef patties (4, 6 and 8 oz.) and the burger is served with fries and extra toppings you can choose to add or not to your burger. On the other hand, brgr co. also serves special burgers on a punctual basis, but the menu remains very classic, focusing mainly on the quality of the ingredients.

As they told me at BRGR Co., they have “no freezer, except for the ice-cream”. Indeed, the ingredients all seem very fresh and I enjoyed every bite of my burger. The bun was soft on the outside and just a bit toasted on the inside, the beef was cooked exactly to my request (Yes, you can choose how would you like your beef to be cooked). However, for BRGR Co. to become a perfect burger (if there is such thing as a perfect burger…), I would like to add more toppings, such as jalopeños, or sauteed mushrooms to go with the swiss cheese.

The Bottom line is that BRGR Co. is a burger of top quality (for those saying it is expensive, well you  definitely get what you pay for), but remains however a bit sober. If you are reading this, Chef Hadid, I think we would alel love something a bit more risky in the future, keep us updated!

I would like to thank Amy for the invitation to Brgr Co. Hope you have a nice time readi this review!

Our friends at Viral Juice also made a finger lickin’ good video clip for BRGR. Co

Viral Juice

For your information, BRGR Co. is located on Abdel Wahab street in Achrafieh and this is their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/brgrco

In’n’Out Burger, adulated by many people as the Holy Grail of all fast-food burgers…It is time for The Burger Tribune to write about this!

In’n’Out Burger opened its first branch in 1984 and rapidly expanded all across California, counting today nearly 300 restaurants across the West Coast. The secret behind In’n’Out popularity among burger enthusiasts: staying true to your values. Born Californian, the company stayed under family-management for more than thirty years, is using fresh beef patties each day and proposes a very simple menu to his clients:

I had the chance to grab a double-double during my stay in San Francisco In January 2012. I ordered it with a Dr. Pepper and, while the french fries were a bit undercooked, the burger was definitely a winner. Fresh, simple yet very tasty, made with quality ingredients. That’s what you would expect from a traditional fast-food, no fancy sauces, no extravagant buns or toppings, just a fresh burger that will satisfy your hunger, and that’s what you get at In’n’Out.

In addition to the very rudimentary menu displayed in each of In’n’Out’s branch, the restaurant also proposes a “secret menu”  that is becoming these days less and less secret. Some of the most popular items are even displayed on the company’s website under the section “our not-so-secret menu” . For example, if you order your burger “animal style”, you will get extra grilled onions, mustard sauce on the patty and pickles, same if you order your fries “animal style”.
If you ask for a “protein style” , it will be wrapped in a lettuce leaf insted of the paper pictured here.

Ask for a 3×3, and you will get 3 beef patties and 3 slices of cheddar…

There are approximately 20 secret items at In’n’Out burger, you can find them all here, what’s your favorite?