To date, I’ve received very few perks from doing Nice Things. I’m fine with this because I like to maintain my anonymity and waiving said anonymity is usually a required condition for getting some free shit. Unfortunately, restaurants don’t typically gamble and give away meals to any customer resembling Samoan Peter Griffin and they’re equally down on leaving a dish out back to feed stray bloggers caterwauling from the shadows.
I also really like maintaining this understanding that we have: me, the one writing this sentence, an amusing and opinionated man capable of immeasurable wrongness and impulse; you, the unspoken voice of your inner-narrator, keenly aware of the subjectivity of taste, the value of time, and an expectation of honesty. It’s a bar we’ve set for us at Marianas Trench height. It’s also one that is seemingly harder to clear by the larger blogosphere as lines between opinion, fact and advertising continue to blur into nothingness.
Honesty is important to us.
Hopefully those sanctimonious paragraphs didn’t misdirect you. Very little perks is different from no perks, and the little I’ve received has been pretty fucking cool.
Here’s a catalog of my treasures. In the words of Ozymandias “This is my blog, look upon my works and despair”
- I’ve had people DM me very informative, complimentary and funny things. My brain works. I have an ego. It likes the occasional stroke.
- I’ve been offered free shit by restaurants or tacit offers to be “taken care of”. I can only assume this means getting jerked off by a prep cook in the walk-in, so this gesture is also really appreciated.
- I’ve seen some minor changes in content and policy from local social media and restaurants, which is nice. Slow motion is indeed better than no motion.
- I had two absolute fucking heroes write posts on this site, which has been by far the best perk (found here and here). Its real easy to write me an email saying you’d like to write – its hard to actually follow through.
- I’ve received somewhere between 2-4 beers from the most heavily sucked establishment in Nice Things history: Wurstbar.
To the most militant Nice Things fans, of which there are probably 4, I do not feel conflicted about getting some free beer and writing this burger review. For me, I really like to write. This is fun for me. It only remains fun if I can write honestly and passionately instead of shilling ramen or Tuesday nights Fireball special. Writing without conviction or passion is like masturbating to your own asshole. Yes, you can do it, but…why?
There’s no better embodiment of this philosophy than this post. Spoiler alert: I’ve got many nice things to say about the delicious burger I ate at Wurstbar. It got a very high score. But what fucking good is any of this to Wurstbar because at this point in my post I’m already about 700 words in and haven’t talked about a single fucking burger, I browbeat most of my audience up to this point and compared dispassionate writing with jerking off to your own asshole. This post is functionally useless to anyone who would attempt to benefit from it.
Here we go.
I got the Haus Burger, their standard cheeseburger. This is a terrible picture of that burger.
Patty type. Two Pat Lafrieda Brisket Blend patties. This means mostly brisket and a much higher fat content and a milder flavor than the OG or Short Rib blend. Veggie burgers are also available for psychopaths.
Is it cooked well? Perfectly. This is the type of patty the Diesel and Dukes should be trying to go for. Its balanced perfectly. Juicy and thin. Crispy and meaty.
Is it seasoned? Yup.
Does the size or amount make sense? Yup. Its two patties on the thinner side of normal.
Bun type. Four King’s Hawaiian Rolls. This sounds like some gimmick shit, and to a certain extent it is, but they serve all of their sausages and burgers on King’s Hawaiian Rolls…and it works. Mostly. The taste and geometry of using this bun is ideal. The only critique I have is that it gets hella sloppy. By having such a pillowy bun, you’re basically signing up to look like an absolute savage when you are done. It promotes slippage, its not capturing a lot of the residual liquid from the patty or condiments, its a fucking mess. But it tastes really, really good.
Is it dry? Nope. Its as delicious as a King’s Hawaiian Roll.
Cheese type. Yellow American. The gold standard of cheeses.
Is the cheese melted? Yes.
What type of shit are they putting on it? Iceberg lettuce, tomato, onion, ketchup, mayo, pickle. The onions are shaved so it gives you a nice onion-y bite and some crunch without the aggression of biting into a big ole raw onion ring.
How much shit are they putting on it? The right amount. I’d maybe dial back on the condiments to compensate for the bun and juicy patty.
Does all this shit add to the burger? Mostly. I can’t stress enough that despite your best efforts, this burger is going to get messy. My hands looked like I just got done giving a C-section to a pot roast. Still enjoyable though.
How do all of these things above work together? This burger is a perfect example of how you can elevate your offering with a few thoughtful tweaks. You don’t need to dump Mac and Cheese on your burger to make it special. You can’t just make a meatloaf sized burger and impress people with its bigness. Keep it simple, do it well. Put your own personal touch on it, but don’t try and make your shit go viral. Some people will scoff at the burger because of its bun, but outside of that its a classic to the core. The execution is great. The taste is great. Everything works.
This was a really good burger. An easy way to find out if your burger is good is when you notice yourself persuading your dining companion to taste it with the enthusiasm of a congressional campaign. Points off for the messiness and excessive levels of moisture.
4.1 OUT OF 5
OK, so I should have wrote a review on Wurstbar a while ago, but I haven’t. I’m also – as I’m sure you can probably tell at this point – bored with the repetitive burger reviews, though I remain committed to finishing this whole fucking list. So I wanted to throw in a few highlights from this amazing bar that you should know.
This is not the best burger. Da Blu Burger is by far the best thing on this entire menu. Its so fucking good. Its a boujee burger with bacon jam, blue cheese, carmalized onions, and black truffle aioli. And a restrained truffle aioli, you won’t be breathing vampires to death with this shit. If you only listen to one thing I say: get this burger.
If you like beer or cider you need to be drinking here. You are simply not going to get the quality of beer they have at Wurstbar anywhere else in JC. You can’t. If you care about what you drink or you like trying weird shit, there’s something for you to drink at Wurstbar. Additionally, if you’re tired with beer, wine and cocktails – not sure why you would be, but if you are – there’s a whole cider menu that has some respectful offerings. Give it a try, especially as the weather gets warmer.
Kale Salad. I previously said that Hooked has the best salad in JC. This is based on me not eating much salad and loving the anchovied umami-bomb Caesar dressing they put on it. This isn’t as good, but its really, really, really close.
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