Monday, July 11, 2011

Ginger (Finally) Had a Little Lamb

Chargrilled Lamb Burger – The Breslin Bar and Dining Room
The Breslin Bar and Dining Room 

After a significant New York eating dry spell, related to foolhardy trips to Follies and the Hamptons (respectively) along with unforeseen illnesses, Vodka and Ginger reunite for an afternoon of food consumption.  It remains a miracle that even though we have time and time again proven unable to consume vast quantities of food and drink in one day, we continue to greedily attempt to make a significant dent in our Best Thing I Ever Ate list in a single afternoon.

This day starts at The Breslin Bar and Dining Room.  Though Vodka has already been here and consumed the best BURGER Frank Bruni ever ate, its mere location (the horrors of midtown) has deterred us from an official Food Network-induced visit thus far.
Though Who Can Resist the Charm of This Platter for Long?
Despite the unfortunate weather, first hot and humid followed by downpours of rain, we both manage to make it to the Breslin, though confusion ensues when Vodka informs Ginger she is waiting in the lobby and Ginger assumes she means the bar (always a worthy assumption in this particular case).

We are seated quickly by the hostess who Vodka appears to have befriended while waiting for Ginger (today's excuse for her tardiness is a preemptive stop for Pepto Bismol on her way to the restaurant).
Better to Eat You With, My Dear
After choosing from the cocktail list (Vodka picks the only thing with vodka, and Ginger, the only thing with ginger), we order our burgers.  It appears to be the anomaly to not get a lamb burger here, as they are the only things coming out of the kitchen, at a rapid pace, to the tables around us.  Apparently, Ginger is the only person in Manhattan who has not yet eaten this burger.

Our drinks arrive, and while they are good -- they contain alcohol -- they are not particularly memorable.
Plus, It's Never a Good Sign When We Remember Everything That Comes After Them
The couple next to us say nothing to each other the entire time we chatter away, as they are engrossed in their massive burgers.  Though we chuckle to ourselves about their lack of interaction, we soon find out why: 
Don't Talk with Your Mouth Full, Indeed
Our burgers arrive, hot and juicy, accompanied by three of Ginger's all-time favorite foods: French fries, mayonnaise, and pickles. The fries (or chips, as the British proprietors of the Breslin insist on calling them) are average, but not in a bad way: super crispy and plenty salty after hitting the fryer three times.  The pickles are heavenly, and we find their deliciousness similar to, almost on par with, McClure's.
A Solid Meal Unto Itself
The burger, of course, overshadows all the tasty accompaniments.  The lamb is so pink and juicy that the bun is quickly soaked.  Frank Bruni mentioned that a lesser burger could not stand up to this hefty, crunchy, exceptionally delicious bun, but it also seems true that a lesser bun would have disintegrated immediately when wrapped around this meatball-like hunk of meat.  There are a few scattered red onions on the burger, but it is the feta that is most welcome.  The thin slice adds a perfect amount of saltiness, without overtaking the lamb flavor.  When spread with the accompanying cumin mayonnaise, it is burger heaven.
Have You Had Your Break Today?
We each easily consume an entire burger, without thinking twice about the consequences of beginning our afternoon eating like cavemen.

Then, we pay our bill and stumble out into the rain, wishing more for a nap then for any more food.

The Breslin Bar and Dining Room's Chargrilled Lamb Burger: 5 stars*

*Certifiable Best Thing We Ever Ate

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