New York has serious burger game. From white table cloth eateries to diner booths, joints with worthy patties pop up left and right. But, after making their juicy ways into conversation, its only for a brief moment. There are a small few who manage stay in conversation time and time again when someone asks, where can I find a good burger? Their names are thrown around and your group is quickly on its way out the door for a taste. The Brindle Room’s Steakhouse Burger is definitely one of those where each raved-about bite is more memorable than the last.
The Brindle Room sits on a quiet street in Manhattan’s East Village—but, when Brindle Room opens its doors, the masses come just for their beloved patties. When it comes to ranking burgers in general, we’ve found there’s a couple of things you must keep in mind when taking your first bite. Most importantly, the burger can’t need anything extra to dip into to make it great—sorry ketchup lovers. We also keep a tight ship about no substitutions—you take it as the chef would want you to eat it, a.k.a. exactly as it’s listed on the menu.
But before digging into the Steakhouse Burger, we caught up with the gastropub’s chef, Jeremy Spector, to get the low-down on how he makes his coveted cheeseburgers. First, the patties they whip up fresh are made of chuck, short rib and sirloin, which all bring plenty of flavor to the table. Then, instead of firing up the barbie, they use cast iron pans to crust the bottom and top of the patties. As a deal closer, he throws wet caramelized onions into the same pan and cloaks each burger with American cheese. Spector says they then put another cast iron pan on top so the steam perfectly melts the cheese. As for the bun, it’s basic and insignificant—on purpose. The bun is not the star of this show.
So, after trying it for ourselves, what did we think was the prominent (and magic) ingredient behind the signature burger? The onions. It was all about the rich taste of those caramelized onions. They had us licking our fingers clean. Aside from the burger though, the Brindle Room’s menu looks like a greatest-hits collection— each pick is as good as the last. To point one other out, the fried chicken sandwich was insanely good, packed with sun-dried tomatoes, pecorino, sautéed kale, roasted garlic, horseradish and aioli. We feel personally attached to it because its flavor stuck out even though we had finished their heavenly burger mere seconds before. That’s a tough act to follow. Brindle Room, keep making this city drool.