Burger Hunter

Burger Hunter: Shamrock’s

Shamrocks

Mike S. eats more burgers in a weekend than we do in an entire season of watching House of Cards and also documents his meaty exploits at the #GreatAmericanBurgerHunter tag on Instagram. We love his work (how does he not have his own show for this?), so we convinced the Hunter to share some of his patty places with you, our hungry readership.

No longer settle for a line out the door. Demand more!  Well, you’re in luck if you’ve been striking out at The Nook. You gotta try the more comfortable sister spot The Irish Nook aka Shamrock’s. It’s also home to the iconic Juicy Nookie Burger, and for stuffed burgers this thing is laced. Straight up the funk. Why wouldn’t you take two patties and wrap them around your choice of cheese? You’re pretty much not a Minnesotan if you haven’t done a Juicy. Shamrock’s work is up there, but not over the moon. Bun is soft, patties are thin and cooked medium with crisp edges. Creating a perfect pocket. Pro Tip: Eat it vertically and use the coin purse method to control your cheese. The molten lava inside is that special something where dreams and magic come together in absolute harmony (R.I.P. Prince) to make some kind of brand new element on the periodic table from the meat’s juices mixing with cheese to make this tasty eruption. Probably everything you ever wanted in life! Enjoy the no waiting, all the space, and it’s super easy to win a rubber ball on their crane game.

Scorecard:   Flavor: 8.1   Presentation: 5   Originality: 9

Shammrocks, 995 7th Street West, STPL; crnook.com


Burger Hunter: Tilia

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Bordered between Lake Calhoun (aka Lake Rybak in the Hunter’s book) and Lake Harriet dwells the beautiful neighborhood of Linden Hills. And on that hill. There is a tree. The prettiest tree that I ever did see. . . Sorry went into the kid classic “The Green Grass Grew All Around” for a second there, but the tree we’re talking about is Tilia and this eatery understands that the burger is a canvas for culinary creativity. One look at the Gorgonzola Burger and goals AF. It’s big, beautiful, and bold in flavor. A house grind that’s cured and gives it almost a hint of sausage, but likely no oink mixed in. V good to say the least. The burgers namesake Gorgonzola cheese with Tilia’s pan drippings mayo is my OTP (one true pairing) for life. It’s the Mariana Trench of flavor. So deep. Topped off with some sweet & spicy pickles on a super soft bun. The Gorgonzola Burger proves that a burger is art; go find your (t)h(r)ill down in Linden Hills.

Scorecard:   Flavor: 9.3   Presentation: 7   Originality: 9

Tilia, 2726 W 43rd St, MPLS; tiliampls.com


Burger Hunter: Buster’s on 28th

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The Standish Neighborhood deep in the heart of South MPLS has a gastropub that flat out knows burgers. Buster’s on 28th is a special piece of America where foodies flock and beer dudes rock! The place is beautiful, rich in mahogany and kinda cozy for a bar. Hunting rarely feels this good.  The Buster’s Burger is first-rate. In hipster talk—it’s lit. Way lit! The burger’s meat is flavored exquisitely, the onion is added right into the patty and it’s seasoned just right. Rendering an even flavor where nothing dominates… that’s tasting the meat, folks! Cheese is by choice with only fine selections. The bun is from heaven, literally baked same-day fresh right next door at A Baker’s Wife. A little pickle aioli, LTO, and when you can, always add applewood smoked bacon. All collaborating together and bringing you incredible comfort, like an orchestra performing “Con Te Partirò” for mom and dads wedding anniversary.

Scorecard:   Flavor: 9.0   Presentation: 6   Originality: 8

Buster’s on 28th, 4204 S 28th Ave, MPLS; busterson28th.com


Burger Hunter: Burch Steak and Pizza Bar

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Mike S. eats more burgers in a weekend than we do in an entire season of watching House of Cards and also documents his meaty exploits at the #GreatAmericanBurgerHunter tag on Instagram. We love his work (how does he not have his own show for this?), so we convinced the Hunter to share some of his patty places with you, our hungry readership.

When you think Uptown Mpls there’s always a few intersections that come to mind. This week’s hunt jaywalks heavy at the corner of Franklin & Hennepin, straight into Burch Steak and Pizza Bar. The Burch Cheeseburger has the pedigree of a king that’s sending a very strong message across flavor-town. The meat is American Kobe aka Wagyu from a local favorite Snake River Farms. It’s Prime grade or higher, and the flavor profile is steak-like with a hint of sweetness—it just melts in your mouth! Burch executes the excellence with aged cheddar, some cabbage/carrot slaw, and a little smoked aioli. The bun is buttery grilled black sesame and does a fair job holding course. Damn near perfection and absolutely something to write home—or you Burger Hunter fans—about. Ask for a table by the windows, the people watching is to live for!

Scorecard:   Flavor: 9.7   Presentation: 7   Originality: 9

Burch Steak and Pizza Bar, 1933 Colfax Ave S, MPLS; burchrestaurant.com


Burger Hunter: Louis Ristorante & Bar

Cossetta's secret burger

Mike S. eats more burgers in a weekend than we do in an entire season of watching House of Cards and also documents his meaty exploits at the #GreatAmericanBurgerHunter tag on Instagram. We love his work (how does he not have his own show for this?), so we convinced the Hunter to share some of his patty places with you, our hungry readership.

“Well, ask me why I burger alla time? It levels my head and eases my mind.” This week’s hunt is so good it calls for a little Dylan. Head down 7th street in St. Paul and you’ll find an Italian landmark-et known as Cossetta’s. This little slice of heaven has layers of secrets. On the top floor is Louis Ristorante & Bar—and they don’t have a burger on the menu. It’s on their double secret bar menu and the wait staff protect it like Gollum does the ring. Hamburger Alla Griglia. Yes, a power name, but much deserved. It’s grilled, tasting the flame with every bite, and the meat is seasoned to perfection. Then there’s its many friendly accompaniments, like the Italian fav rocchetta cheese made from goat, cow, and sheep milk. Hey Mambo, it is sooo creamy good! The giardinera and garlic-town aioli add a real nice touch. Top it off with LTO (lettuce, tomato, onion) and an onion bun and you’ll need to seek “Shelter from the Storm” . . . Storm Griglia!

Scorecard:   Flavor: 9.2   Presentation: 8   Originality: 8

Louis Ristorante & Bar, 211 7th St W #3, STPL; cossettas.com