Saturday, 8 September 2012

Burger Theory, Be Friendly Burger

I needed to cleanse my body and soul after my last disastrous burger experience. Only a Burger Theory burger had the power to restore my faith in burger-dom.

If you follow Burger Theory on either Facebook or Twitter you probably already know they're offering limited edition art burgers. They rotate every two weeks and the first and current offering is the Be Friendly Burger - apple-slaw, chipotle mayo and crispy sugar-cured bacon. 


This is complex and textural burger. Crispy bacon and the crunch of fresh apple offsets the savoury, fattiness of the melty-cheese-topped-patty while chipotle mayo adds a warm richness that brings the whole burger together. And 3 bucks for bacon may seem a little steep but you've probably never had bacon this crispy before.


If the Be Friendly burger is anything to judge by, the rest of the art burgers are going to be amaze-balls! Word on the street is that future art burgers will include deli meat, Mexican, and native fruit themes. Apparently next weeks burger will include CHICKEN SKIN!! SQWEEEE!!

And I'd love to see Burger Theory rock a lamb burger just to give Maccas a short sharp poke in the eye.

Burger Theory on Urbanspoon

Thursday, 6 September 2012

McDonald's, Serious Lamb Burger

Sam Kekovich is a lamb loving legend. When he tells me to eat lamb - I do. Mr Kekovich is currently spruiking the McDonald's serious lamb burger, which meant I had to give it a go.


I can see what McDonald's are trying for here. They're trying to replicate the kind of backyard burger you might find at an Aussie BBQ. Egg, beetroot, tomato sauce. Typically Australian burger fillings. Fine. Good. No problems there. But there are serious problems was with the patty. It didn't taste of lamb. In fact, it doesn't taste of anything much. The rosemary, parsley and oregano was completely lost. The garlic was utterly absent. There were chunks of 'real onion' through the patty but other than attempt to replicate a homestyle burger I struggle to find a sensible rationale for their existence.


I was halfway through when I realised something else about the patty. It was GREY! Seriously grey. As though the burger had been constructed out of some sort of sanitised lamb offcut slurry (which it probably has been and probably explains the lack of lamb flavour).


By way of comparison, below is a snap of the lamb sausages I had for dinner that night. Ignoring the fried onion and sauce on top (yes, that is tomato sauce, mustard AND mayonnaise. Try it. So delicious. You're welcome.) look at the colour of the sausage. Sausage meat probably isn't the best quality meat but it isn't grey. There are shades of red and brown. I shudder to think what McDonald's have done to the meat to turn that unappetising grey colour.


I seriously think that this lamb burger is damaging to the good name of Australian lamb and also to Mr Kekovich's brand. In future, Sam should be more careful about which cart he hitches his waggon to.

Would I order a serious lamb burger again? No. Was it better than most of the crap they dished up for the Olympics? Yes. Would I like to see Burger Theory have a crack a lamb burger? You betcha!

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

La Cantina Co, Taco Madness

By now you'd know that La Cantina Co has launched. Despite some teething problems with Truck Norris it was well worth the wait. I checked out the van for taco madness on their launch day and have since been a regular repeat customer.


On launch day La Cantina Co offered a 3 taco and jarritos combo for $16. An expensive lunch but but a great way of trying virtually everything on the menu. And despite a few little hitches (the van ran out of small change and making quesadillas tied up valuable taco making resources) day one seemed to go quite smoothly.

I ordered a guava jarritos to sip in the warm winter sun while waiting for my tacos.I hadn't seen these 'little jars' before but apparently they are the number one soft drink in Mexico. Fizzy bubbly always tastes better out of an ice cold glass bottle and these had nostalgically sweet fruit flavours with a little more carbonation than usual. Perfect for cutting through the heat of a taco!


I ordered three different tacos on launch day - beef, chorizo and black bean; pork and pineapple; and smoked chicken.

By far the standout, the strong smoke flavour of the chicken taco was balanced out by a tangy guacamole and creamy fresh cheese. The beef chorizo was rich, meaty and studded with small salty chorizo bombs. Though sweet and aggressively peppered the pork and pineapple needed a little more work. There was curious rubbery-ness to the pork and compared to the other tacos the sauce was bland and watery.


A few days later I caught up with the taco van again. First to sample the taco I missed - the mushroom and zucchini - and secondly to see if the pork taco had improved. It had. The pork seemed somehow meatier and the sauce was thicker and more flavourful. I can understand why La Cantina Co offer a vego option but for those of us who are omnivorous (or even carnivorous) the animal protein tacos are the way forward - they just seem to have more flavour. Not that there is anything wrong with the mushroom and zucchini - it just seemed lacking somehow.


A couple of handy tacos hints - make sure you eat the tacos as soon as they're placed in your hot little hand. The tortillas have been toasted on the grill and you'll lose that extra crunch if you take them back to the office. Do help yourself to their great hot sauce selection - the suave sauce made with tamarind is a favourite of mine and adds a lovely hot'n'sour pucker! And be sure to order a jarritos - they're delicious.