In my quest to try all the burgers in the lower east side, I came across another addition to the smash burger craze that’s sweeping the area: King’s Cafe.
The burger was beautiful, and well assembled. Cheddar, aioli, double patties, caramelized onions… Everything was great about it, except for the overwhelming flavor of onion water. It was as if the onions had been sitting in the bottom of a sink, just stewing there. I’m not really sure how else to put it!
Great seasoned fries, awesome bun, great ratios all over the place. Just that onion water… Odd.
A buddy of mine helped open this joint over by Bryant Park, so I had to go check it out. The food here is excellent! Check out how perfect this burger looks:
That’s a handsome fella. And it was as delicious as it looks. Certified Angus Beef smash patties, shredded lettuce, sharp American cheese, and tomato on a brioche bun. The crust on those patties was perfect!
The chicken sandwich was great as well. Great spice to it.
As a tribute to Rutt’s Hut over in NJ, they also offer this ripper hot dog. It really hit the spot with a crispy snap.
And to top it off, the fries and tots were both golden and crunchy.
I highly recommend this place. The food is better than most other joints out there slinging smash patties now.
HANDCRAFT BURGERS & BREW
110 West 40th Street
New York, NY 10018
Smashed is a new smash burger joint on the lower east side. They just opened four days ago. My wife and I stopped by to try a few items out. We went with the classic double and the blue cheese and bacon burger.
I was blown away by the flavors and the quality. This joint uses fresh beef, and they grind their own burgers in house.
The burgers were perfect in every way. Great toast on the bun, perfect crisp on the patty, great melt on the cheeses, nicely prepared griddled onions, and a killer, unique sauce that really puts the “special” back in “special sauce,” because these days everyone is really just using thousand island dressing. That’s lame.
I preferred the classic double, since the meat really shines there. I can’t wait to go back and try their rendition of a smashed Big Mac.
And the fries? Excellent as well. But I’m looking to try their smashed potatoes on my next trip.
My friends at Gotham Burger Social Club have really started ramping up their presence at food festivals and charity events, offering up their delicious creations for generous revelers and hungry festival goers. If you ever get a chance to try one of their burgers, you need to do it!
They’re deceivingly simple and delicious. Lots of crispy-crusted texture from the smash on the flat top, great creamy melted cheese, perfect ratios of seasoning and toppings, and overall high quality ingredients and meat – whether it’s a Pat LaFrieda dry-aged blend, a Schweid & Son’s combo of chuck, short rib and brisket, or high end Kow domestic wagyu/angus cross.
The first time I ate one, I had the “Cafe Tappi” burger, by George “Tappi” of Booze and Burgers. It’s a double smash with dry aged beef, melted American cheese, caramelized onions and pickles on a toasted potato bun.
This has evolved a bit, sometimes showing itself as a single smash with caramelized onions, pickles, American and a special sauce.
But at most of the events where they pop up, they’re doing a delicious Oklahoma style smash, where thinly shaved onions get smushed into the burger patty and steam-cooked as the burger crisps up on the griddle. They’re topped with melted American, ketchup, mustard and pickles. Check out these videos:
They’re a delicious ode, homage and tribute to the great American roadside burgers of the past. Keep an eye out for these guys at events around NYC and even beyond. I’m hoping for a brick and mortar shop sometime in the future, since these are addictive, every day kinda burgers.
I’ve been meaning to check out Death Avenue because I was always intrigued by the name. Death Avenue was the notorious nickname given to 10th Avenue due to all of the railway deaths that occurred there in the old days, when trains ran vertically up and down the avenue to service the warehouse and meat packing districts.
In any event, the joint is Greek-inspired, but also had some classic American staples like burgers and BBQ.
The cocktail list is excellent.
I tried the Banana Bourbon, which was light and smooth, and definitely banana-infused. My wife tried the Mastiha Mint (Mastiha is a kind of tree – its sap or extract is used in the drink). It was refreshing like a mojito.
We started with fried pickles. Pretty basic. The dips were interesting: a BBQ cause, tzatziki and some kind of hollandaise-isa sauce. The pickles were tasty, but the batter slipped off too easily.
My wife ordered the 8 Hour Octopus app as her entree. This was pricey at about $26, but it was tasty and somewhat substantial enough to eat as an entree if needed.
I had the Feta Burger. This was stacked way too tall, but overall it was a decent enough burger to satisfy my cravings. The oregano fries that came with it were great.
I’d say this was a great place to have a few drinks and snacks, but I’d skip making a whole meal out of it.
A number of variations on this gem can be concocted depending on what’s left in your fridge after the annual gorge-fest known as Thanksgiving. I had an abundance of leftover stuffing and ham, so that’s the route I went this time. Check it out, assholes.
STEP 1: Sculpt your stuffing into burger sized patties. My patties were pretty sweet since my stuffing also had sausage meat already incorporated into it (Momma’s recipe is amazing).
STEP 2: Fry off some ham. Get it nice and brown/crisp on the edges.
STEP 3: You should have some hammy oil in the pan now. LEAVE IT! Put your patties in and let them sizzle up like a regular burger.
STEP 4: Flip once, when they are browned.
STEP 5: Add first layer of cheese. If possible, cover the pan so the cheese begins to melt from the steam that builds up.
STEP 6: Pop some ham on that bitch.
STEP 7: Add second layer of cheese (and cover if possible).
STEP 8: Take the burgers off the pan with a spatula and fry up some eggs for the top.
STEP 9: Top off your burgers with an egg or two.
STEP 10: EAT.
I had no buns in the apartment, but since the burger is primarily made from bread, there’s really no need for a bun anyway. Just fork and knife it.