The Wild Game Burger Series at Burger Lounge. The Game Changer. Don't Hate the Playa, Love the Game!!
The Burger Lounge is the future of the burger not simply because it positions itself in the gourmet burger niche of the fast-casual restaurant sector but it's also being a very, very good corporate citizen. The ingredients, quality, flavor and presentation all revolve around health and environment. Burger Lounge's animals are never held on feedlots, fed grains or animal byproducts, given antibiotics or hormones. On the production side, the company implements energy efficient technologies and conservation practices plus a whole litany of other conscientious methods of conducting business on a large scale. You can read Burger Lounge's culture statement here.
All that is, of course, important in this day and age, however, ultimately for the the business to thrive, the product has to be good. Burger Lounge's burgers are good, really good. Juicy, meaty, flavorful, satisfying, everything you want a burger to be. Plus, you can feel good about what you just devoured on both a personal and environmental level.
Weirdly, Burger Lounge also promotes itself as the burger joint for vegetarians. The small but growing burger chain out of San Diego also does well-crafted and vibrant salads which include loads of super foods. Take, for instance, the Organic Quinoa Salad, it includes: arugula, spinach, kale, roasted baby squash, corn, tomato, red onion, toasted almonds, feta and a smoked tomato vinaigrette. It's so healthful it makes me sick. Kidding.
All that healthy and good citizen stuff aside, I personally was won over by Burger Lounge's "The Game Changer Burger Series". It's an exciting and interesting scheduled series of burgers that feature various game meats, each month one game meat burger is highlighted. On the roster are bison, lamb, elk, venison and wild boar.
Smoke 'em if you got 'em! Smokey Wild Boar Burger.
For the new year starting in January and February, The Game Changer will cook up the Smokey Wild Boar Burger that is made with 100% grass-fed wild boar topped with smoked cheddar, hand-cut onion rings and a housemade BBQ sauce. Every patty of boar is 6 oz. and cooked on a flat top grill that is heated to 450 degrees to achieve that nice just so crispy exterior while searing in the juicy flesh.
I've eaten wild boar before in other manifestations such as in sausage form. And describing that experience as wild is an understatement. Burger Lounge's wild boar burger has just the right amount of gaminess to distinguish it from any ol' beef patty but not too much as to inspire visions of licking a wet goat. Moreover, the accoutrement of smoked cheddar, sweet onion rings and savory-sweet BBQ sauce neutralize any excessive feral flavors.
The fries at Burger Lounge is just about perfect as well. I'd put it in league with In N' Out's except better. In N' Out's fries tend to be on the undercooked side. Burger Lounge's is much crispier and less steamy/soggy on the inside.
Also, the supremely crucial bun that sandwiches the beautiful meat is quite good here. It's a mix of organic whole wheat and unbleached white flour with a hint of blackstrap molasses (the good sweet stuff). You can even feel good about the frickin' bun!
Burger Lounge is now one of my favorite burger joints in So Cal. I really respect how they run their business and very much enjoy their food. (Although the store I visited is located on a parking unfriendly drag of Sunset Blvd. in WeHo, there is free parking underground with validation.) And the fact that they go out on a limb and are offering interesting meats with their burger choices makes me even happier as a Deep End Diner.
Be on the look out for Burger Lounge's other game meats like bison, elk, venison and lamb later in the year on The Game Changer Burger Series rotation. Let a playa play!
The Smokey Wild Boar Burger is featured beginning in January 2013 and goes through February.
Burger Lounge (Los Angeles locations)
281 S. Beverly Dr.
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
8539 West Sunset Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069