Today’s installment is about Island Burgers & Shakes at 766 9th Ave (Btwn 51st & 52nd St) in Hell’s Kitchen. This is a casual joint with an insane amount of burger choices, 63 varieties of burgers & chicken. The unusual aspect of the place is they don’t serve fries, as the rumor goes the owner didn’t have enough money or space for a fryer.
Lunch started as I tried to cram into my mouth the Riviera, a burger cooked medium, with mushrooms, sautéed onions & peppers on a ciabatta roll, and a side of salt & vinegar chips. The burger was cooked well but a little bland, I probably should have ordered it blackened, which just means flavored with ‘Island’ spices. What makes this place different are all the topping varieties. These burgers are very messy and this leads to the drawback of the burger. My cohort, Robb, ordered a Bourbon burger, blackened with jack cheese, bacon, grilled onions, and some sort of cajun mayonnaise on sourdough bread. His burger broke the golden rule, a burger should not be eaten with a fork & knife, but the sourdough bread fell apart into a pile of gooey mess. So avoid the sourdough bread, these burgers can’t handle it.
In the end, an up to snuff burger, but when the place is more about the toppings than the burger, I’m not sure the place is deserving of the top burger in New York as some have it listed. The search continues… Go4Kb.