Tag Archives: burger porn

The Ainsworth

My wife paid a little under $50 for a Gilt City flash deal that got us two drinks each, an app to share, two entrees and a side to share at The Ainsworth. Pretty great deal if you ask me.

We started with these crab tacos. These are $21 regular price, so I thought that was a bit high considering that these are small and the plate comes with four pieces. Do these look like they’re worth $5.25 each (before tax and tip)? I don’t think so.

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They were tasty – good crunch on the shell, though I wasn’t sure if the crab meat was actual lump crab or some kind of crab substitute. Either way, I wouldn’t pay that kind of money for them.

For a nominal upcharge ($12), I went with the 20oz bone-in, 28-day dry-aged rib eye.

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This was spectacular. The aged flavor really popped for just a 28-day stint in the aging box. I could taste the nutty and funky qualities with ease. While it was grilled instead of seared, didn’t have much of a spinalis (fat cap), and there was a bit of hard gristle in the meat, the cook temperature was a perfect medium rare and the flavor in the eye was excellent. 8/10.

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As you can see, the steak was topped with some crispy fried shallots. Nice touch!

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At $42, this is a great deal, especially considering that the flavors of this thing can easily rival some of the best steakhouses in town. I guess it was just a bummer that I got a cut with little fat cap and a few bites of gristle.

My wife went with the famous mac and cheese burger.

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That’s a fried mac and cheese patty on the bottom, a cheeseburger patty on top of that, and then mac and cheese on top of the burger.

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While that is all totally unnecessary and probably only done for Instagram fodder, it was indeed a fun item to eat. Here’s a little animated image for you to ogle:

It didn’t taste that special to me, but it sure did make for some handsome photos.

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French fries came with that burger, as if there wasn’t enough to fill you up with the burger itself.

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These could use some work. Some were a little bit un-crisped and heavy, but otherwise decent.

On the side, we shared the asparagus with a fried egg on top. Both the asparagus and the egg were cooked perfectly and had good flavor. Look – it was either this or more fries, so give me a break.

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THE AINSWORTH
122 W 26th St
New York, NY 10001

New York Burger Co.

This place slings a decent fast food style burger, but the bacon was rubbery on both my and my wife’s burgers, and the fries were soggy and dense. Stick to the basics here and you should be fine. Don’t waste money on the extras. And it’s still not on the level with places like Smashburger, Shake Shack or Lucky’s Famous.

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The good thing is that my wife paid about $10 for $30 worth of food and drink here through a flash deal. So all in, this was not too bad.

NEW YORK BURGER CO
678 Ave of the Americas
New York, NY 10010

L&L Drive Inn

This was a kiosk at the Cannery Mall food court in Maui, Hawaii.

L&L Hawaiian BBQ is a fast food type restaurant that has locations all over the place. There even used to be a location down by NYC’s South Street Seaport, but that has since closed. Anyway, this place has a take on the ramen burger, called the saimin burger, which I tried as burger #3 of the trip.

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It was dry as fuck and hot as fuck, but it was a fun item to try. No cheese, just lettuce and a soy-BBQ type sauce drizzles on. I’d pass on this item unless you really need to try it.

Pete’s Tavern

Pete’s is the oldest continuously operating establishment in NYC. It opened in 1864 and has not closed or switched locations since.

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What’s cool here is that the old cashier’s cage is still right there at the end of the bar. It used to be that the cashier would sit in the cage with the money/register to be protected from being robbed.

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They even have this funny old sign for how to live on $15 a week:

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The bartender Phil was awesome too; really friendly guy, easy to talk with, outgoing and generally just made the place a great spot to hang out. I hadn’t ever been in here before (shame on me), but he suggested coming back around Christmas time when the lights are up at the bar. Definitely. Thanks Phil!

Anyway we saw this burger on the menu and figured it had to be tried for our second burger of the night:

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It turned out to be a bit of a let down. The meat was excellent, as to be expected, but there was not enough cheese. Also the tomato was sliced too thick – almost as thick as the burger patty. The waffle fries were done perfectly though.

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A friend of mine met up with me and my buddy here while we were eating before he met with some broad for a date. He was hungry too, so he ordered the regular burger and we all shared:

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This was much better eating: definitely better than the huntsman burger.  Although my buddy was a little cranked about a pricing discrepancy (bar menu on the wall that he ordered from did not match the printed menu that he was charged from), and the burger was cooked a little under how he wanted it (I would have been fine with that temp – look at it – it looks perfect!), it was indeed a good burger. I think I would take the Old Town burger over this one though, but it was close.

In sum, this was an amazing bar to hang out in. It’s an absolutely amazing piece of NYC history, and it will definitely stay that way with staff like Phil at the bar, who make the place even better.

If burgers ain’t your thing, then try one of their extremely fair-priced brunch deals that range from $12-$15 for three courses, or maybe their delicious corned beef sandwich:

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PETE’S TAVERN
129 E. 18th St.
New York, NY 10003

Melt Shop

I saw posters for a new joint opening up in my hood. A GRILLED CHEESE JOINT!!! Not knowing when the doors would open, and being anxious to try out the grub, my wife and I took a slightly longer walk over to a location already in operation on 50th & 7th.

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Since I have been on a massive burger kick lately, naturally, I ordered the Melt Shop Burger. It comes with pepper jack cheese, cheese sauce, burger sauce, caramelized onions, and sweet pickles (wish it was half sour), all on sour dough toast that’s grilled to perfection. It was full of cheesy, oozy meltiness.

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My wife had the original grilled cheese (American on white) with some added fried chicken and bacon inside. This was great too – absolutely perfect mix of ingredients.

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On the side, we had an order of loaded tots: bacon, cheese sauce, grated parmesan cheese, and sliced jalapeños. These could have been a bit more crispy, but they were good even though they turned to much under the “load.”

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Best item of the day, however, goes to the fucking nutella fluff milkshake. Holy shit… If you don’t know what fluff is, it is spreadable marshmallow. When I was a kid, my mom used to make me peanut butter and fluff sandwiches. The elevation of fluff with nutella and a bit of chocolate in a shake format was fucking brilliant.

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It was also nice to see that they had several bottles of sri racha sauce there like any other normal condiment. YES!

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You guys should definitely check this place out some day. I see big things happening for this little franchise. The deals they offer make it even more worth your while, like $3 Abita beers and 50% off your first delivery order (Go to www.meltshop.com and use promo code SAYCHEESE).

MELT SHOP
135 W. 50th St.
New York, NY 10019