Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Burger Joint Review

This small box of a restaurant with its handwritten menu and graffiti scrawled on the walls is what you might imagine a place called Burger Joint would look like. But its setting in a corner of the swank Parker Meridien hotel in Midtown, hidden behind a heavy curtain with a glowing neon burger sign indicating its presence, is not what you would expect.

All that's on offer are hamburgers, cheeseburgers, grilled cheese and the traditional partners — fries and milkshakes. Yet it has a reputation that can spawn long lines. But going for an early Sunday lunch, my dining companions and I avoided the crowds.

As I've increased my consumption of red meat and indulged in famous burgers around the city, my standard for comparison has been Shake Shack, which I've found to be my favorite. And it's become hard to beat. These burgers, at $7-$8, cost more, but you get a slightly larger patty, which you can specify how you want cooked. They're good, but could use more seasoning (some version of a Shake Shack sauce). You get a large bag of thin-cut fries for just under $4, which are worth ordering but which you'll want to wave the salt shaker over them.

If you can manage to skip the line, Burger Joint is a fun spot to grab a bite to eat, but I wouldn't wait too long for it. (But then again, I don't even wait for Shake Shack.)

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