No "Best of..." post has brought as spirited of a reaction as
It has become something of a fierce debate of not only what the best burger is, but also an inane jurisdictional battle, the likes of which have not been seen since Thomas Shorewood encroached on the land of Plainfield D. Ruffleman in 1843 (may not have actually happened).
Eight restaurants competed for the title of Best Burger In Plainfield: , , , , the ever so controversial , and .
I've decided that it's time for someone to put their foot down and put their stamp of approval on the true best burger. And I've decided that as a full-fledged carnivore (as long as my girlfriend who is an, ahem, vegetarian isn't around) I'm the man to take on this challenge.
First, I need some rules.
1) McBride's WILL be a part of it. I'm at least half sure you can hit from McBride's with a paper airplane in a good breeze (distance approximate). I don't actually care if it's technically in Joliet. There have been enough responses by people on Patch stating how good the burger is for it to merit my attention.
2) Red Robin WILL NOT be a part of it. For what it's worth, it's the favorite burger of my father. But it's also a chain restaurant. It wouldn't be fair to the owners of the various restaurants that have built their restaurants from the ground up in Plainfield. (I'm giving Tap House the benefit of the doubt. They have six locations, all in Illinois. I'm not arguing this point any further.)
3) I WON'T eat any burger that claims to be Kobe (looking in your direction, Tap House). Kobe beef is illegal to sell in the United States. The only place where it can be found is Japan, Macau and Hong Kong. What you are eating is actually a Kobe style Wagyu/Angus cut of beef.
4) I will be creating a completely arbitrary point sheet which I will base each burger off of. I'm cool like that.
5) I won't base a burger off its side dishes, but will use the ingredients used in the making of the burgers as a barometer of quality. I don't care how many places try to sway me with waffle fries.
Okay, onto the scoring system in which i'll be basing the burgers:
A) The burger itself (10 points)-The burger has to be cooked properly and of high quality. If the menu says where the beef comes from, then obviously it will be a step ahead of the competition. A simple look at the HopScotch & Vine website says that their meat comes from Market in Plainfield. I shop at Tischler's; I know they have great beef.
B) The bun (10 points)-This is no joke. The bread is often the most overlooked part of a burger. A restaurant serving a pretzel roll is miles ahead of a restaurant slapping their burger on Wonder Bread. I'll also watch for burgers that are getting sloppy and falling apart. That's a sign that the burger has been sitting on the bun for too long before being served to me.
C) Toppings (10 points)-Not just the toppings put on, but how well cooked they are/how fresh and crisp they are. If I get the impression the cheese is stale, then there will be issues. I don't care if it's just a standard cheeseburger, if you are going to do a cheeseburger well, the lettuce, the tomato and the onion all need to be crisp and fresh.
And that's it. 30 point scale. Over the next few weeks, I will be visiting all of the restaurants(and possibly a couple more that didn't make the list, just to keep things interesting) and putting my reviews here for you all to harshly judge me about.
If you guys have any ideas for further ways I can improve the scoring system, let me know. Like I said, scoring is arbitrary so I can change it pretty much whenever.
And now, let the burgers begin!