What makes the perfect burger? I don’t think there is only one right answer, it’s just like falling in love; beauty is in the eye of the beholder or in this case perfection is in the palette of the taster. There are however, a few criteria against which each burger will be “judged” (judge - that is such a formal term, let’s rather call it reviewed). I have selected eight criteria to look for when doing the tasting / reviewing, these include: Quality and juciness of the patty (because no one likes a dry patty), ratio of burger to bun (it’s not a legit burger if there is more bun than burger); flavour of the patty (it is essentially what will make me come back for more); flavour pairing with other ingredients (innovation in moderation is key); presentation (because all of us eat with our eyes first – and it makes for great Instagram moments); element of surprise (think of it as the X-factor that gives it the edge – it can be anything from a special sauce to a crunchy extra); patty cooked to perfection (medium for me please) and last but not least, overall taste (because teamwork makes the dream work).
Up first was the new-kid-on-the-highly-anticipated-block, Ribs & Burgers in the new Menlyn Maine restaurant complex. With only one lamb burger on the menu, it was an easy choice! The menu paints a promising picture of hand pressed patties, cooked to be a succulent “medium” (unless you are brave enough to ask the chef for “medium well”), nestled in a bun fresh from the baker. Needless to say, this description already had my mouth watering. To accompany this deliciousness, rocket, tomato, feta, Spanish onion and Tzatziki was promised. I was quite content with this menu description. Going Greek with lamb is after all a winning combo, so I had high expectations for this lamb burger.
The burger arrived beautifully presented in the middle of a wooden board, picture perfect! Already eating with my eyes, I was hoping it would taste as good as it looked! The burger to bun ration looked satisfactory, with a fresh bun just getting a quick scare on the grill to make it nice and toasty (big thumbs up). The patty was done perfectly to my taste; thick, juicy and full of flavour. The patty had a zesty, fresh, lemon flavour, with notes of herbs coming from the natural flavour of the lamb. Not being fatty or “wild tasting” at all, this suited my non-farmgirl pallet! The lamb patty was complimented with the creamy element given by the Tzatziki and feta cheese. Swopping the usual traditional crispy lettuce for rocket contributed a peppery element which was right on par with the Spanish onion. Overall this burger was flavoursome and balanced, with not too much Tzatziki and feta to overpower the meat, and a good bun to burger ratio.
The element of surprise? You can order a lamb patty as an extra add on to any meal! Will definitely do that next time! Yes, there will be a next time! Is this the best #lamburger in (P)-town? Only time will tell, ‘till then go and taste it for yourself!
Check them out at: http://ribsandburgers.com/za/
Wham bam thank you lamb!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Fellow foodie friends, Marina and Lizanne are “Lambs Cooking Mutton”! Armed with their blog posts and a frequent feature in the “Weg and Go” magazines they are on a mission to make cooking with lamb inspiring and creative but also less intimidating for the modern young lady or gentleman! They will also be travelling across SA to bring you news and reviews on South African meat festivals and restaurants where winning lamb and mutton dishes are served.
Although Lizanne is a designer by day, and Marina a MSc Nutrition student on the side, their roles are ironically switched when it comes to cooking with lamb. Lizanne is always looking for ways to cook and eat healthy and will also keep you up to date on how to keep your lamb dishes as healthy as possible. Marina on the other hand loves creating absolute indulgent and creative lamb dishes that have no mercy on your diet. But between the two of them they will provide you with lamb dishes for every occasion!