Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Burger Club

I love burgers. No words have rung truer. I love burgers because they combine three of my most favorite food groups: bread (Carbs), meat (Protein), and cheese (Fat), coz I need cheese on mine all the time. Also, I'm not a burger purist by any stretch of the imagination; if you've got intriguing ways to get a burger to an 11, by all means go ahead and do it. That's why some of my favorite burgers in recent memory include the Black & Blue burger from Eli's in Minneapolis, and the Jiffy Burger from Blue Door Pub in St. Paul. 

That said, I also believe that for any burger to be epic, you have to lay a strong foundation...that is, you gotta have fresh, juicy, delicious burger meat. And the 112 Burger at 112 Eatery epitomizes how memorably good a basic cheeseburger experience could be. 

I've been to 112 Eatery several times already since I moved to Minneapolis; three times already since the beginning of 2011. Excessive? Probably. But oh-so-worth it. I love feasting over their appetizers and shared plates more than I do their entrees. Oh, and I might've swooned over their butterscotch budino, too. It's probably my 2nd favorite restaurant in Minneapolis (right after my neighborhood joint, Eli's). For this latest visit, I joined a wonderful group called "The Burger Club" to try their famous burger. Can I just digress and say that Minnesotans are obsessed with burgers, so much so that someone decided to have a burger make love to a slice of cheese and -- voila! -- the Jucy Lucy is born. 

Anyway, back to my aventura de carnivoro. First off, I got some refreshing, acidic Limonata to provide some break from the (foreseeably) greasy burger:
Then, they served us with these simple but addictive peanuts:

Given that this was my first attendance of the Burger Club, I didn't want to commit heresy by ordering something other than the burger, but 112's menu sure as hell looked enticing. Steak tartare? Raw oysters? Tie me down now before I go mental: 

But, I'm here for the burger. Like everything else on their menu, 112 Eatery's Cheeseburger is so fantastically delicious and delivers a fully-flavored punch to the gut (the good, playful kind of punch). Again, when you do the basics perfectly, you get perfect results. The meat is a wonderful medium-rare, seasoned very lightly but heightened by the tiny bits of sweet onion mixed into the patty. The cheese is really where the saltiness comes from. Then it's all laid on a toasted English muffin. 

And, for a burger that's seemingly tiny, this baby is actually a fat baby; it's pretty fulfilling. It must be all that gooey, melty brie cheese, or that healthy burger patty, or the buttery muffin. Whatever it is, it was enough to put a dent in stomach and a smile on my face. In other words, I left a beat up, upbeat fool. 

What's your favorite burger, and where can I get it? 

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