Fuddrucker's (WORLD'S GREATEST HAMBURGER FOR 25 YEARS): 5614 Bay Street in Emeryville
Cost: $12.00 (kobe beef bacon cheeseburger, fries extra)
Image Source: blogger's own
Growing up in Southern California, I think I may have considered Fuddrucker's to possibly be the "World's Greatest Hamburger". Of course, my exposure to burgers was basically limited to whatever occupied the strip malls at the time. Also, I consider myself a little more knowledgeable today than I did back then.
Tonight, I ordered the Kobe Beef 1/2 lb. patty bacon cheeseburger with swiss, cooked "rare" (no fries tonight). I think it was probably the quickest turnaround time I ever received a burger. In all honesty, I knew something had to be up with the preparation time, or lack there-of. I don't really know how long it takes to cook a burger, but I suspected that a properly toasted bun takes a lot longer than the time allotted.
And I was correct. The bun was similar to the kind that Jack's Bistro serves (although not nearly as high quality) - and it would have made a much better burger if it was actually toasted properly. Unfortunately, it was a little too doughy for my liking.
The patty was a little too rare for my liking as well, but the inside wasn't a reddish uncooked chuck (although it tasted slightly uncooked). Instead, the inside of the burger was saturated with some sort of dark marinating sauce which added to quite a salty patty.
The fixings were partly my fault (because I selected them from the bar) but also the responsibility of the restaurant. The freshness concerned me most. In particular, the relish looked like it had been sitting out all day, and had lost its moisture. The other fixings had probably been left out for at least several hours, if not the whole day. The mayonnaise seemed a little watery too.
Verdict: In summary, I feel that I've become much more critical of the burger evaluation of Fuddrucker's compared to years past. In summary, I don't recommend it. In retrospect, I think the marinating sauce is injected into the patty to simulate actual burger juices.