Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Nation's Giant Hamburgers

Seriously, I've waited about ten years for Nation's to make their way from the Bay Area to Sacramento and I must say that I'm bursting at the seams with excitement. Having the Nation's experience at home is nostalgic for me. As a young man, visiting family in the Bay Area allowed us to partake in the rare pleasure of dining at one of the best burger joints in Northern California.

Biting into the burger was just as fantastic as I remember it! Thick slices of bacon perfectly complemented the extraordinary amount of tomato, lettuce, cheese, and Miracle Whip (not mayonnaise). This was a giant burger with giant taste!

I love that Nations serves pie and breakfast. One day I'm going overboard and ordering pancakes and a burger! I know I have said that I have already had the best burger in my life but Nation's embodies everything I love about food. It's the total package!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Mini Burger Truck

As a general rule, I don't eat food that comes off of a vehicle. But there seems to be this gourmet food truck revolution going around and I want to get on the bandwagon. Then I heard there was a food truck that serves burgers. It's no secret that I love burgers so I was overcome with excitement when I received this news!

After obsessing over it for a number of weeks, I finally decided to feed my burger beast. The Mini Burger Truck did NOT disappoint! 

Allow me to explain: you get the choice of having two or three of your typical slider mini burgers. Of those two or three, you have the choice of five kinds of burgers which includes the monthly seasonal burger (think soup of the day). The money from seasonal burger purchases is donated to a different charity monthly. Sides include fries, chips, and sweet potato TOTS (get these)!

I ordered a three pack with sweet potato tots. Of the three burgers i chose "The Cowboy" (pepperjack, bacon, bbq sauce), "The OG" (an In-N-Out type) and "Da Philly" (mushrooms, provolone, grilled onions). Wow! The burgers were cooked to perfection! Size really doesn't matter! I was amazed at the quality of the food. The Mini Burger Truck has many great days ahead. Keep up with their daily locations by following them on Twitter!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Formoli's Bistro

I've come to harbor high expectations for restaurants with the word "bistro" in their name. Formoli's Bistro is no exception. The dining room is a very nice open area but I wasn't there for ambience. I was told the Whiskey Burger is among the best in Sacramento. Obviously, I had to find out for myself.

Formoli's Whiskey Burger is pepper encrusted with a whiskey demi-glace (rich brown sauce), cheddar cheese, habanero aioli, and mixed greens on a ciabatta bun. Sounds fancy, huh? My first impression of the burger was "where's the whiskey?" A hit of whiskey flavor or a whiskey aftertaste was what I was looking for but apparently a whiskey demi-glace doesn't lend itself to have a strong whiskey flavor.

Unfortunately, my mind set as I was eating the Whiskey Burger was "is this better than Tuli's Atom Burger?" It isn't. It is delicious but plain. The quality of the meat is amazing like the Atom Burger but the Whiskey Burger has just a different fusion of flavors.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Restaurant Thir13en

Another lovely Sacramento Downtown restaurant, Restaurant Thir13en is housed within The Sterling Hotel. This restaurant is under ownership of those who also manage the outstanding Tuli Bistro so naturally I would have to stifle my excitement. Needless to say, expectations were high.

It was a beautiful day so my family and I ate outside. The ambiance was wonderful. We were served water with cucumber. It is extremely refreshing!

Obviously, their Capitol Burger was in my crosshairs. I was curious about the taste of Misami Ranch beef (chuck) which was the meat used in the burger. The time it took for our orders to arrive was a bit extensive, but in their defense we showed up during the lunch rush. When the food arrived I ravenously took my first bite. The burger was okay. It was a little too juicy. By the time I was finished there was a grease/juice puddle on my plate (ew) and the tomato was cold so it skewed the temperature of the beef. Not as good as Tuli's Atom Burger. I only use this comparison because Tuli and Thir13en are under the same ownership.

Restaurants are not perfect because they are ran by we, imperfect people. That's why I do not get upset if my meal does not come with a ribbon tied to it. I will give Restaurant Thir13en more chances because ownership is outstanding.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

BLT Burger Las Vegas

In my leisure time, I made my way to Las Vegas. There was no way I was leaving the city without trying a new burger! Housed in the Mirage Hotel, BLT Burger has two other locations in New York and Hong Kong so I was very excited to eat at such an exclusive restaurant. The menu has some delicious (and unorthodox) options. I almost want to take a trip back to Vegas solely to dine at BLT. They were once featured on Martha Stewart making a burger with ground salmon. The Salmon Burger has been on my radar for a long time. Obviously too much red meat is bad. Although I love beef burgers, I am also curious about beef alternatives.

Before tasting the burger, I had the pre-concieved notion that it would be fishy. I was glad that I was wrong. I think it's the fact that the salmon was grounded it could pass so well as a beef alternative. This burger is extremely impressive and delicious.

"MMM! This is a tasty burger!!"

Friday, July 22, 2011

Dad's Kitchen

One of the first things you see when you walk into Dad's Kitchen is "Welcome Home." Although I understand the premise behind a restaurant using this phrase, it doesn't really feel like home. But it's definitely a place I'd visit... A LOT!

"Dad's" is a small, down-home kind of place. Very casual. I had my meal outside in their patio, which is beautiful on a sunny spring or summer day! The service is great. Non-chain restaurants seem to care more. It is extremely refreshing.

Take a look at what "Dad's" has to offer. Of course I came for a burger but they also have soups, sandwiches, etc. The Dad's Burger had a little Food Network stamp next to it so it caught my attention from the get-go. The Five Dot Ranch beef is crusted with bacon and bleu cheese! WOW! How innovative and impressive! The cheese and bacon enhance the already high quality of the meat. Admittantly I underestimated the burger. But that begat such a positive reaction. I was thoroughly pleased.

"MMM! This IS a tasty burger!"

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Web game: Cheeseburger Supreme

Here's a fun burger flipping game in an e-mail I got from Ian. Enjoy :)

CheeseBurger Supreme from Munchie Games

Thursday, May 19, 2011

De Vere's Firestone Burger

The second week of #SacBurgerMonth (5/8-5/14) at De Vere's Irish Pub featured one of the most unique burgers I have ever had the pleasure of tasting. This burger houses many different flavors and they all come together very nicely.

The double ground beef is kicked up a notch by adding smoked pork and is cooked in a red wine, shallots, balsamic vinegar based sauce. Then we add smoked cheddar goat cheese and fried onions. The Grateful Bread local bakery supplies the bun.

There are two items here I've never had on a burger: goat cheese and shallots. Not only do these ingredients help make the burger what it is (awesome) but they add a dimension of flavor I have never experienced until now. The shallots give the burger its sweetness, off-set by the (delicious and funky) goat cheese. The bun is perfectly soft. It doesn't get soggy from the juices of the burger and shallots. I would have never thought to use shallots and goat cheese on a burger. The amazing combination of flavors further proves to me that the hamburger is the most versatile entree in the history of the WORLD!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

National Burger Month

The month of May is National Burger Month (Who knew?). Thanks to some friends on Twitter (@deverespub and @burgerjunkies) the word is really getting out in Sacramento. How will you celebrate? Some will host burger parties. Others will challenge themselves to eat a different burger everyday. Here are some cool ways to take part in the festivities (click the links for more details):

de Vere's Irish Pub will serve up a different burger each week. Take a picture of the featured burger and upload it to Twitter with the hashtag #sacburgermonth to enter a drawing to win a Canon DSLR camera from

The city of West Sacramento will be adding a culnary spectacle in the form of The Squeeze Inn. Celebrate National Burger Month with a Squeeze with Cheese on Tuesday, May 10th starting at 10 am. 1350 Harbor Boulevard.

Become Red Robin's first Chief Burger Officer! Submit your application by May 15th and tell them why you are the sultan of sandwiches! You could win a trip to Red Robin's corporate office in Denver, FREE Red Robin for a year, and more!!

Try a new burger! Go to a burger joint you've never been to and experience the satisfaction of opening your taste buds to a new burger sensation!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Ettore's European Bakery & Restaurant: Burgers for the Cure

I was elated to support my burger habit AND a very worthy cause. Sacramento's famed European establishment held a fund raiser and all the proceeds went to Susan G. Komen for the cure. Scores of ladies, dressed in pink, joined Ettore to volunteer their time to help battle breast cancer and the Placer County Firefighters selflessly gave their time to flip burgers (also in pink).

"I've got a beef with cancer!" I enthusiastically shouted to the young lady taking the orders. Those kind enough to support this cause got Ettore's Award Winning All-Natural Niman Ranch Hamburger, a pasta slald, and a pink "boobie" cupcake.

Niman Ranch Beef is delicious. Ettore's supercharged it by serving the burger with sauteed mushrooms, swiss cheese, and herbed mayonnaise on a house made cheddar scallion bun. These elements together make an extraordinary burger. It is served during Ettore's lunch hours so if you missed today's event, fear not. For all will have the opportunity to enjoy one of the best burgers in Sacramento.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tuli Bistro

Inconspicously tucked away in Sacramento's Downtown area on the corner of S and 21st Streets sits a quaint restaurant with upscale style and a fair price. I haven't heard much about this place until recently. Then I got excited when I heard they have an amazing burger.

Tuli's menu changes frequently. This being my first time, I am not sure if the Atom Burger is always part of the menu. But I cross my fingers on bended knee, hoping and praying it will be there at my every request.

From the moment i bit into the Atom Burger, I knew there was something different... nay... extraordinary about it. It must have been the 1/3 pound of Storm Hill Chuck Beef and the "Tuli Sauce" that made it superior to most burgers. It is truly a marvel. Delicious down to every last bite.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Gatsby's Diner

What used to be a Japanese restaurant is now a swingin' 30s themed diner. Gatsby's has great food, great service, and great people.

The atmosphere was nostalgic for me for two reasons: all my memories of coming here as a kid when it was a sushi joint were flooding in and the background quietly echoed the sultry sounds of Ella Fitzgerald.

I was greeted with smiles as soon as I stepped foot in the building and was promptly seated. All the burgers are 8 ounces, which is moderately large for meat. It was right up my alley. I kept my order simple and ordered the Gatsby Burger (with bacon). I also ordered the tasty homemade kettle potato chips as an appetizer. My burger was hot, all the ingredients were fresh, and the strawberry shake was amazing!

Did I mention that Gatsby's used to be a Japanese restaurant? I did? Well I failed to mention that Gatsby's STILL uses the old Benihana grills in the middle of the dining room! I loved seeing the chefs at work!

"MMM! This IS a tasty burger!"

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mr. Subs: "Noooo, Thank Youuuuu!"

When I first drove past this place, I thought "Mr. Subs" and "Burgers" were two separate places. "Haha! I've never seen a burger joint called 'Burgers.' That's kinda cool." Mr. Sub's Burgers has a hilarious atmosphere thanks to the owner whom I like to call "Mr. Thank You" (those who have been there understand why).

The Capital City Deluxe was my burger of choice. Of course, after placing my order I politely said "thank you." Then "Mr. Thank You" stopped what he was doing, gazed at me with his big eyes and responded enthusiastically, "Nooooo! Thank youuuuuuu!!" I couldn't help but laugh! He seemed happy to say it!

I ate my Capital City Deluxe (mushrooms, grilled onions) and fries which were not only delicious but with the joy in my heart created by the warmth of "Mr. Thank You" made the food taste better!

If you try to get into a "thank you" match with "Mr. Thank You" you WILL lose everytime! He always gets the last thank you.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

20 Outrageous Burgers!!

Here is an article that was sent to me today. I read through it and found it pretty interesting. From these are 20 Outrageos Hamburgers That ACTUALLY Exist. Enjoy :)

The Golden Bear

The Golden Bear sits in Sacramento's Midtown area on K & 23rd Streets next to another town staple The Desert Diner. I came here on a recommendation from a young (prety) lady I work with. Obviously, I love burgers. This place only has ONE which makes my choice easy!!

The Juicy Lucy Burger is a Sacramento original. A member of the staff told me it's a family recipe from Minnesota. It is stuffed with jack cheese, topped with (my favorite) bacon and avocado! The bun was really toasted but I think that enhanced the flavor of the burger. The burnt bun taste seemed to mix well with the bacon and beef (perhaps it was an accident). At any rate, the burger was DELICIOUS!

I was bummed because instead of french fries, they gave a choice between a garden salad and potato salad (meh). I chose the potato salad because I wanted some potato with the burger. It was actually pretty good. Not creamy like grocery store potato salad.

The restaurant is very small. Three tables seating 6, the bar, and outdoor seating but it's pretty nice. I'd come back for lunch but it seems like it would be way too crowded at night.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Burgers & Brew: A Sacramento Gem

Not far from R15 bar in Sacramento sits a burger restaurant that should have been built in my backyard. Burgers & Brew is perfect for those who have an affinity for... well... burgers and brew!

As soon as I walked in, I knew this place was something special. The rustic decor was fitting for Sacramento's Midtown and it was populated with the young adults of the city which made for a vibrant atmosphere.

Now the food. Every burger is a half pound! The bacon cheeseburger (with guacamole) was my prime choice and I heard the onion rings are second to none. They did not disappoint. My food arrived at blazing speeds and I couldn't wait to dig in. My burger came decorated with a toothpick sheathed down its center as most burgers do. I removed the toothpick, picked up the burger and took a bite. The next thing I knew, guacamole oozed out of the top of the burger like a volcano! That gave me quite a laugh! The burger was cooked perfectly, the bacon was crispy, and the bun wasn't soggy. I was in Heaven.Burgers & Brew also boasts an impressive list of (you guessed it) beer. I heard about Banana Bread Beer and I had to give it a try. Wow! The amber colored beer was delicious as it housed a hint of banana!

What an amazing experience! Burgers & Brew will have my business for the rest of my life!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I Remember Why I Love Burgers

The burger is probably the most versatile food in human history. All meats and combinations of toppings can be mixed and matched to create the perfect meal for any taste. You don't have to be neat when you eat it but you can. It doesn't necessarily need a bun either. A burger can be whatever you want it to be.

My affinity for burgers stems from Carl's Jr's "If it doesn't get all over the place, it doesn't belong in your face" campagin. The first commercial featured the Super Star. A very beautiful was eating the burger very sensually. Ketchup was dripping everywhere. She removed a pickle slice and tossed it in her mouth.

After I saw this commercial, my life changed.