Friday, February 13, 2009

A Passable Attempt

Okay, still on the subject of hamburgers after the Big Boy Hall Of Horrors, to say nothing of the Mos Burger Visitation Of Evil, the other day Sam decided he wanted a hamburger. (For Japanese readers, a reminder: that's a hamburger, not a hanbagu -- see the Big Boy post.)

See, I got fed up, and then I spotted a sale on cheap-o shaved beef for sukiyaki. I bought a kilo, brought it home, and spent 20 minutes with a big, heavy knife mincing it fine by hand. I made patties, we bought decent rolls and an acceptable couple of tomatoes, and the result was the best burger we've had in Japan. Sam loved it... and decided he wanted another one in a few days. Sale wasn't going, so that'd be expensive. Besides, I didn't have the time or inclination to spend half an hour mucking about with a whacking great knife.

So we tried another Japanese chain: Lotteria.

My basic opinion: surprisingly decent, functional hamburgers. But don't get fancy.

On this first go-round, I had a bacon-cheeseburger. Decent, but teeny, and the bacon of course is not cooked thoroughly, and the cheese is some sort of liquid gloop.
The wife had a teriyaki thingy, which she said was fine but looks very dubious to me.
Sam had a basic cheeseburger, which was the right choice.
Maia was given a deep-fried rice ball, but she mostly ate fries and ketchup instead, which I think was the right choice.
And then she drank the ketchup...
...with predictable results...
Since these photos were taken, I tried Lotteria's "straight cheeseburger." YES. That is the correct choice: go straight. Keep it simple. It had lettuce, onion, tomato, pickle, and ketchup, together with a functional fast-food burger (way better than McDonald's, for example), basic plastic cheese, and an acceptable plain bun. It looked surprisingly like the ad copy here.

So far, this is the best burger in Japan... except for me hand-mincing and going nuts, which was fabulous but expensive and time-consuming.

On the subject of homemade burgers, there are those who would tell you that it would be much, much better if I'd used wagyu beef, but it would cost a fortune and I'd have to start with about 1/2 pound per patty because so much of it would render out -- it's mostly fat, you know. Next time there's a sale, maybe I'll blog the process -- fun with knives!

Anyway, Lotteria gets a (somewhat surprising) thumbs up.

Stumble Upon Toolbar

1 comment:

Amanda said...

Hi Chris, I think Lotteria is Korean.

(Nice blog! We just got back from Kyoto and loved it so much we are going back in March. )