Tag: Burgers

Le Languedoc: the Island’s best burger

Le Languedoc: the Island’s best burger

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Le Languedoc Has been for many years a popular, elegant restaurant on Broad St, and serves delicious high end meals in their white table cloth dining rooms. But, Le Languedoc  is also a Bistro and their menu includes some simple,  but excellent bistro food. Originally, the lower level Café served the bistro menu and the upstairs the fancier food. But some years ago, they decided to serve the same menu everywhere. Now, the only difference is that you can make reservations for the upstairs up to 30 days in advance, and you can reserve the lower floor café and the outdoor dining area the same day.

Cafe

With that in mind, we made a reservation for the Café yesterday and were seated at one of the lovely outdoor tables under a canopy, where we could order from any part of the menu we wanted. We settled on the excellent cheeseburger and fries (19.75). While the default is Garlic Fries, you can order the non-garlic version as well.

half saladWe also ordered the Chopped Salad ($16.50), but from previous experience we knew that the salad was enormous, and asked the waitress to split the salad for us. She delivered it on two plates, and it was just the right amount.

 

 

The cheese burger comes partially assembled so you can put it together the way you like, and the conventional sauces are served separately for you to add as you wish. We asked that the burgers be prepared medium rare, and they were perfectly done. This cheeseburger is unquestionably the best one on Nantucket, and is little more expensive than any other we’ve tried.

You can get lots of other fine meals at Le Languedoc, including Steak Frites, Cod, Lobster, Roast Chicken, Shrimp and Boudin Blanc, but if you are looking for the best cheeseburger, you definitely want to come to Le Languedoc. We were joking with the waitress that the burger was really a bit big for us, but I noted that for younger guys, it would be just right. She replied that those 25-year olds would probably eat two!

For comparison, we present some of the other burgers you can get on the island. They are mostly pretty good, but not in the league with this one. Listed in approximate order of quality, best to worst.

Lola burger $13.75            Brotherhood burger $16

Rose and Crown $16.99           Charlie Noble:  All American Burger, $17

Lola Burger, near the Sparks Ave Rotary, provides tasty, but sloppy to eat burgers in rough hewn tables, reminiscent of a company picnic, where parking is difficult unless their valet is on duty.

The Brotherhood of Thieves is ideal for families with children, but their burgers are dry and nowhere near as tasty.

The Rose and Crown is not really a family place: it tends to be sports bar rowdy. At our last visit, we found the burgers dry and tasteless and the fries not much better.

The Charlie Noble isn’t sure where it is a family place or a sports bar. One night it was very quiet, and the next night, everyone was loudly cheering the US Open. And burgers with bright yellow American cheese are not our favorite.

Stick with Le Languedoc.

 

 

 

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Match Burger Lobster: outstanding new Westport eatery

Match Burger Lobster: outstanding new Westport eatery

Match Burger Lobster opened this fall to ecstatic praise, at least from those of us who revere lobster roles. Located in Saugatuck, it is the brainchild of Matt Storch, the proprietor of the full service Norwalk (Sono) restaurant Match.

Match Burger Lobster is a far more informal affair, seating about 40, plus more in the bar area. The menu  features lobster rolls, oysters bags of steamers and actual lobster all from Norm Bloom and Son.  In addition, they offer grass-fed sliders and burgers from the adjacent  Fleisher’s Craft Butchery.

This is a friendly and informal place, with the beer choices on a wall board and little paper menus in the box on each tables that hold cutlery and napkins as well.  On a Thursday night, it wasn’t particularly busy or noisy, but the waiter told us that weekends are very busy. There is limited parking in front, but a large lot behind the building.

From our point of view, there is nothing better than their warm lobster roll ($24), served in a hollowed out brioche bun and soaked in butter. However, they also offer a cold lobster roll with Yuzu lobster Mayo, (also $24). Both are served with plenteous and delicious house-made potato chips.

The lobster roll here is a little different than the one at Match in Sono:  it’s more buttery and less drippy than the Sono version. We liked it better.

mini mini

However, if you want to try their grass-fed sliders, you can order a mini slider and a mini lobster roll ($20). The hamburger ($15) and the smaller mini slider ($7) are served with bacon, cheddar dip and S&S onions, where S&S presumably means “sweet and sour.” We think we ask them to leave off the onions next time ad they were a bit overpowering. The burger, however, was outstanding.

Desserts are limited to a Donut Milkshake, a Slice of Cake, Donut Crazy Holes you can fill yourself, a Brownie Sundae and Key Lime Pie. Of course, we went for one of the latter.

dessert

Our bill with two drinks, and tax was only $80, but for a larger group, a lot of $24 lobster rolls will add up. But you can’t do better.

Match Burger Lobster, at 580 Riverside Drive, just off Exit 17, is open daily 11:30 am to 9 pm.  No reservations.

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Dinner at Lola Burger

Dinner at Lola Burger

signLola Burger is a spinoff of the trendy downtown sushi and bistro LoLa 41°, and is principally known for its huge, delicious hamburgers. The restaurant at 1 Sparks Ave faces the Sparks Ave rotary, with parking in the rear. The lot is limited, but fear not, they have valet parking so you will get a spot.

There is an interior dining room, an enclosed outer dining room and outside porch dining in good weather.  Fundamentally, this is a high-quality burger joint with good service and very good food. They also offer hot dogs, pork, tuna, chicken, lamb and falafel, but everyone we saw seemed to be having the burgers.

single burgerYou can order a single 5 oz patty burger with fries for $9.75 and a double patty burger (above) for $13.75. The burgers are tender, juicy and beautifully stacked, with choices of lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, cheese. There are some additional toppings for an extra charge. We were charged  $1.50 for mushrooms.

Whether you order the single or the double patty, these are tall burgers that are kind of hard to hold onto, but they provide plenteous spare napkins as well as forks to eat the burger if (when) it collapses. Beware of ordering too many slippery toppings at once, but you’ll love them anyway.

The fries are very good considering that they came from frozen, far superior, for example to those at Charlie Noble.

customersWe were very happy with the fast, friendly service at Lola Burger, and will certainly return every year. It’s a fun experience.

The only other hamburger on the island in this class is the Languedoc Bistro Cheeseburger with garlic frites for $18.95, and that one is only a single. (But quite large.)

Craft 14 Kitchen and  Bar opens in Wilton

Craft 14 Kitchen and  Bar opens in Wilton

After months of anticipation, Craft 14 Kitchen and Bar opened in Wilton about 2 weeks ago. Run by the team that manages the nearby Bianco Rosso, Mario Lopez and Cristina Ramirez, Craft 14, in the Stop and Shop plaza, has a lively, but informal vibe, and a small but varied and interesting menu. They call it a “polished casual New American restaurant,” and we think this describes it very well.

Also, the structure and systems needed to allow our customers access to the majority of their away-from-home daily meal requirements on a one-stop-shop basis. Kobe Japanese Steakhouse shall be of the highest quality and value, be healthy, nutritious and provided with outstanding personal services at the lowest possible prices consistent with a fair return on investment for our shareholders, job enhancement/security for our employees and a level of community involvement by everyone connected with our business.

The restaurant consists of a bar area with high-top tables, and lower tables to the right, and a semi-open kitchen area where you can watch them from some of the tables, the special thing about this kitchen is that they have high quality quartz countertop from quartz counters in Edmonton, the people who work here are very professional because they were trained at huong nghiep a au, where they get helped a lot. You can also eat on the semi-enclosed patio area in good weather. When the restaurant fills up, as it did last Saturday evening, it’s pretty lively, but you can still easily converse.

Normally we don’t write a real review so soon after a restaurant opens, since they deserve a shakedown period before being scrutinized, but Craft 14 really got everything right and we are going to dive right in and praise their food.

craft-burger
Craft 14 burger

The menu is divided into soups and salads, sandwiches, small plates, supper, sides and desserts.  In each category, you’ll find some simpler items and at least one spectacular one. For example, they have a conventional Wood Fire Classic Burger ($12) and an absolutely over-the-top Wood Fire Craft 14 Burger ($18), which includes ground beef, crisp pork, charred tomato, fried egg, brioche bun lathered with warm “cheese sauce.” We didn’t order this one (yet) but our neighbor did, and it was a burger requiring cutlery (our Urban Kitchen utensils would be just perfect here). In fact it required a couple of meals to finish, as he took half of it with him. But it really looked delicious. They also have a salmon and a ground chicken sandwich.

In the Soup and Salad category, you’ll find Clam Chowder, Halloumi Salad, and Beet Salad among other things. We’ll definitely try the clam chowder next time, but the Beet Salad ($15), made red and golden beets, Asian pear, pistachios orange segments and a yogurt and mint dressing was excellent.

Among the Small plates, we ordered the Ricotta Croquettes, served hot with applewood bacon, tomato confit and Chipotle honey ($12). You get four sizeable croquettes, so it is not unreasonable to share one or even half of them. The portions here are really generous!

mac-cheese
4 Cheese Mac and Cheese

 

And again, among the Small Plates, they have 3 kinds of macaroni and cheese: conventional ($11), Four cheese ($12) and Lobster ($15). We generally think that restaurants serving mac and cheese are silly, since it is so easy to make at home. But not this one! The Four cheese version was rich, hot and creamy. Apparently, rather than starting with a béchamel base, they started with heavy cream. Not only was it excellent, it was huge, and came home for lunch the next day.

chicken-waffles
Fried chicken and waffles

 

The Supper section of their menu included chicken, lamb, pork chop schnitzel, branzino, sirloin steak and hanger steak. But, to us, the spectacular item was the Fried Chicken and Waffles ($20), something you seldom see outside of the American South, and it was really well executed. The chicken was tender and juicy and the waffles crisp, but tender. A small amount of syrup was drizzled over the chicken and waffles, but a small pitcher of syrup was provided, giving you the chance of going either the sweet or the savory route. This was a fun find in a New England restaurant.

They have a small dessert menu including, I think, a mousse and some ice cream, but to top off the over-the-top theme, they  also offer a Banana Split!

This is a restaurant we’re going to be going to again and again, and we wish them well. Our bill, with 3 drinks was only $87. If you want to make your own soda drinks at home I recommend Soda Serve where you can find soda makers.

 

Brotherhood of Thieves: a popular family restaurant

Brotherhood of Thieves: a popular family restaurant

Sign outside
Sign outside

The Brotherhood of Thieves has been a fixture on Nantucket since 1972, providing families a convenient place to eat relatively inexpensively. It was damaged by fire in 1999, but was reopened in 2004 thanks to restaurateurs EJ Harvey and Larry Wheldon. In 2011, Chef Christopher Hinds was appointed Chef de Cuisine, and oversees all operations.

In fact, it was Hinds work that brought back the quality the Brotherhood was known for and their menu now emphasizes burgers and specialty sandwiches, along with a few entrées and shared plates. They have 9 different craft beers on tap, and of course feature a children’s menu as well.

The restaurant is exceptionally popular in high season as visitors and day trippers look for a quick, but decent place to take their children for lunch or dinner.

We dropped by the Brotherhood last Tuesday, and found it much the same. The lower level remains as it was, rather like an old whaling bar. The upper levels are more light and airy.

reubenWe ordered an excellent Reuben sandwich ($18) and the Brotherhood Burger with cheddar ($15). Both come with curly fries. The Reuben was juicy and flavorful, and so substantial that we save part for the next day’s lunch.

burgerThe burger was pretty good, but neither as juicy or as flavorful as you can get right across the street at Le Languedoc for only about $3 more. The fries likewise were fairly good, but not in the class of Le Languedoc’s.

Overall, The Brotherhood is a really decent family restaurant, but for burgers only, go across the street.

Le Languedoc: best burger on the island

Le Languedoc (on Broad St) is a French bistro with a small but imaginative menu of steaks, chicken lobster, fluke, quail, duck and sweetbreads. We’ve written about it before, describing their more formal menu, but had never ventured to the below stairs café where burgers and the like predominate.

Table setting
Table setting

This year, all that has changed. You can order the fancier menu in any room, and the cheeseburger in any room, and have the option of pairing that burger with an appetizer if you like. The dining room décor is really quite elegant with bottom-lit floating flowers and white tablecloth service.

Floating flower
Floating flower

We ate at Le Languedoc last night for the burgers, but preceded them with a couple of salads.

Tomato salad
Tomato salad

One was a delicious Bartlett Farms fresh tomato and bleu cheese salad ($18), and the other a Burrata salad ($16) with figs, Arugula, Zucchini, Seasoned Crumbs, and Balsamic dressing.

Burrata salad
Burrata salad

We both ordered the Cheeseburger and Garlic Fries ($18.75) and it is easily the best burger on the island.

as served
Burger and garlic fries

It’s a fairly thick burger, prepared to the doneness you request, served on an English muffin, open on the platter, with lettuce, tomato and onion under the top muffin, so you can edit them before putting the top layer on. The waiter brought us each three little dishes of ketchup, ketchup and mustard to use on or burger and with our fries.

Assembled burger
Assembled burger

The garlic fries were hot and mildly redolent of garlic so they don’t overwhelm you, but exceptionally good fries.

We should note that the burger and fries are quite filling, and you really don’t need those salads unless you are exceptionally hungry. Desserts are available, but we confess that we finished our meal with ice cream from the Juice Guys.

You can also get a rather good burger from LolaBurger (for about $17.50 with cheese and fries) at the Milestone Rotary, but not only is this one better; the atmosphere and service at Le Languedoc are unsurpassed. Besides, if someone wants to order from the rest of their menu they can do that, too!