New York's Best Burger? Who makes it? Or who makes, plural, New York's Best Burgers. Well first off, Minetta Tavern does not make the Best Burger in New York. Far from it. And of the Burgers at Minetta Tavern, forget the highly overrated Black Label Burger, the Minetta Burger has it beat, though there are better Burgers in New York. For, one, the Burger I make at my house in Greenwich Village, just two blocks away from Minetta Tavern is far superior, a buch tastier burger than you'll get at Minetta Tavern., but there's one thing we have in common when making New York's best burger. And the Burger I make in my house is way Better than the Burgers at Minetta Tavern.
So what's the difference you ask? And you want to know what it is I have in common with the Burgers at Minetta Tavern? The thing I have in common with Minetta Tavern when making my Burger that is without question one of the Best in New York, and for a whole lot less money (about $3.10). Yes, thing that Minetta Tavern has in common with me, in our Burger making, is that we both buy our meat from pat LaFrieda, it's just that I use the better blend than Minetta Tavern. The Black Label Burger Blend by Pat LaFrieda is made with Dry Aged Beef, which though people would want you to think otherwise, dry aged beef is one of the worst things you can use to make a burger. Dry Aged Beef is old meat, and is actually meat that is deteriorating. It's much better to use fresh beef when making a burger, and that's all their is to it, and Minetta Tavern uses Dry Aged Beef for its Black Label Burger. Not good.
I have in the past year used numerous sources to buy ground beef for my burgers. I buy meat from one of the best Butcher Shops in New York, which is Florence Prime Meat Market on Jones Street in Greenwich Village. I've been buying Sausages, and Steaks from this great old Italian Butcher, which to me is the best butcher shop in all of New York. I mostly bought steaks here, and it's relatively recently that I started buying ground beef to make burgers with. I was there buying myself a Newport Steak (Specialty of The House) one day, when I watched an elderly neighborhood lady getting individual Hamburger Patties made for her. I started chatting with here about the burgers, and she said she loved them, so I said I'd get some of them, my next time at the butcher shop, and so I did a couple weeks later. I've tried both the chuck and the sirloin ground beef from the market. They both made fine burgers.
Trader Joe's recently opened in my neighborhood, and I've tried a couple different types of their ground beef (80/20 and 85/15 ratios), and they both made pretty good burgers.
Today, I wanted to get a couple burger patties from Florence Prime Meats, but they were closed when I got there, so I made my way over to Grestide's. I went to the meat counter and spotted Pat LaFrieda's Burger Blend made with Beef Brisket, Chuck, and Beef Short Ribs. There were 4 Patties in the package, for $8.99, at $2.25 a Burger, it's more than I normally spend, but if I can get a better burger it will be well worth it. I'm still trying to get a Burger to taste as good as the ones I made from the meat that my cousin Joe gave me, that was a pacckage of 4 Black Angus Burger Patties from Wayside Market in Southhold, New York, on the North Fork of Long Island. The Burgers I made with that meat, may very well be the Best Burgers I've ever had in my life. "I kid you not," and I have witnesses to back me up on this. Anyway, I wanted to see if this Burger Blend from pat LaFrieda could come close, or dear I say, be better than those Burgers made with the Black Angus Patties from Wayside Market.
So I bought the burger blend and headed on home. I got my stuff ready. I sliced some New York Cheddar Cheese, and sliced some onions. I toasted and buttered an English Muffin, heat my pan, poured in a bit of oil, and threw my burgers in to cook. As the burgers were cooking, I put a little dijon Mustard on one side of the Muffin. I seasoned the burger with salt, and flipped it over to the other side. Then I seasoned the top side with salt and black pepper. The Burgers cooked another 4 minutes, and then I turned the heat off and let the burger rest for 3 minutes before putting it on top of cheese on on side of the muffin. A put a little nob of butter on top of the burger, then a little Ketchup before topping the Burger with the other half of the bun. I put it on the plate and brought it to the table. I grabbed the burger, bit into it, and from the very first bite, I htought "Wow," it was a dam good burger, and better than any of the meat I'd bought in the past year, including Florence Prime Meat. Wow, this was impressive, and the Pat LaFrieda meat was well worth the bit more than I paid for it, and a real bargain when you consider that a McDonald's McDouble cost about $2.69, and a superior burger like this, with more meat, cost just about .35 Cents more than the inferior McDonald's Cheeseburger. Dam!
Yes, I loved the burger. This Burger that I just made at my house was without question better than almost any burger I've had in New York. my Cheeseburger was better than The Black Label Burger at Minetta Tavern, or the Minetta Burger, it's better than the Shake Shack Burger which I normally love but wasn't that happy with their burgers the last two times I was at Shake Shack (Mine is Better). My Burger tasted better than the JG Melon Cheeseburger (I Love), but not better than the Burger I had at Charle's Prime, which was the only Burger I've had in New York City that was better than the Burger I made at home.: But as good as this burger I made at home with the Pat LaFrieda Burger Blend, "it was Dam Good, but not as Good as the Burger that I made at home with the burrgers from that box of 4 Black Angus Patties from Wayside Market of Southhold, NY.
"One Small Step for Man , One Giant Leap for Mankind"
As American Astronaut Neil Armstrong takes his first step on the Moon and does a Moon walk on July 20th in the Year of Our Lord 1969.
Yes, those historic words were spoke by Neil Armstrong "One Small Step for Man, One Giant Leap for Mankind," as he his first steps on the surface of the Moon, a feat never realize by any man in the entire history of the World up to that point, and a feat only achieved by a handful of men to this very day July 20th on the 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing and man walking upon the surface of our Moon.
I was just 11 years old when I watched the television as the great newsman Walter Cronkite commentated the events on CBS News as the Eagle Landed on Tranquility Base, Cronkite commentated as Neil Armstrong came out of the Lunar Lander "The Eagle" walked down the ladder and set his foot on the surface of the Moon. It was quite exciting for a boy of just 11 years to watch. I was witnessing one of mankind's most historical event ever, live, watching this monumental event play out on TV for people to watch live as it was happening all over the world. And here I am today, a man of 61, and remembering back to that day.
We were over my mother's good friend Josie Romeo's house in North Arlington, New Jersey. We were there for a Summer weekend visit, and the Apollo 11 space capsule was already orbiting the Moon. The Romeo's had just put in a nice Cabana Pool, and we were hanging out there most of the day. I remember eating Watermelon on the deck of the pool, which for me always seemed like a special treat every time we had some, and this time was no different. I loved my watermelon.
I specifically can still remember two of my favorite songs that were popular in the Summer of 69. One was actually just that. The song was "One" by Three Dog Night, "One is The Loneliest Number," I guess speaking of being alone. The other big song was "These Eyes" by the Guess Who. Other hit songs in the Summer of 1969 were: Grazing in The Grass by The Friends of Distinction, People Got to Be Free by The Rascals, and a very weird song to me, In The Year 2525. Also popular that year, were GET BACK by The Beatles, and Honky Tonk Woman by The Rolling Stones.
The year 1969 was quite a year for New Yorker's. The New York Jets had already won the Superbowl in January, led by brash quarterback Joe Namath. New York's National League baseball team The Mets would go on to Win The World Series of Baseball in 1969 and the New York Knicks basketball team would win the NBA Championship in 1970 for the 1969 / 1970 basketball season. Yes it was quite a year for New York.
We spent 100s of Happy Hours playing WIFFLE BALL, me and all my friends at the Cornelia Street Playground in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Playing WIffle Ball, as well as playing Touch Football, and Basketball, also on Cornelia Street was one of our favorite pastimes. We playes STCK BALL once in a while, but we highly favored WIFFLE BALL over Stickball. One problem, as kids that didn't have a lot of money, was when the Spalding or Wiffle Ball would break in-half, and we'd all have to chip on our nickels and dimes and any money we could get our hands on, and go to the Candy Store to buy a new ball in order to keep playing the game.
When buying the Wiffle Ball, if we had any money left we'd get and Ice Cream Bar, or candy. Candy Bars were just a Nickel back then, and an Ice Cream Sandwich or Ice Cream Bar was 10 Cents. But, we usually reserved getting the ice cream from Fritz the Good Humor Ice Cream Man who always came by the playground and we dive into the cool looking Good Humor Ice Cream Truck to get our Ice Cream of Choice. Ah, "The Good Old Days," simpler happy times growing up in 1960s and 70s America. These were some of the things we'd do. And "Oh My God," the music was so Wonderful back then. "Not Like The Crap" they make these days (21st Century MUSIC SUCKS).