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Return of the Patty Melt


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#1 voyager

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Posted 09 March 2018 - 12:40 AM

https://modernluxury...story/relic-rye


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#2 Lex

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Posted 10 March 2018 - 03:13 PM

I will make a confession.  I have never had a patty melt.  I've lived in NYC my whole life and never seen one on a menu.  Then again even if I had I probably wouldn't have ordered it.  The Grubstreet blog defines it as "a beef patty, Swiss cheese, and caramelized onions on griddle-toasted rye bread, and thats it."  Grubstreet claims they are a California invention and for the most part they haven't migrated to the East coast.
 
When I was growing up my mom would occasionally serve me a burger on white bread.  I'd complain that a burger should be served on a proper bun and she'd answer "white bread is just as good."  Well no, it wasn't.  Three bites in the whole thing just fell apart. She was a child of the Depression and adept at "making do."  Those bread burgers permanently scarred me.
 
Grubstreet has been running the clickbait series called The Absolute Best which claims to identify the best versions of particular dishes in NYC.  It's a laughable conceit.  For every one they get right they miss on five.  In this case they claim to have identified the city's best patty melt.
 
Number 3 is from a vegan joint called Nix.  It's "made from black beans, brown rice, and oats."  To paraphrase Michael Corleone's valediction to Carlo Rizzi just before Carlo takes his last ride, "Don't insult my intelligence."  Their list also contains five chains.  Clearly the patty melt is not a strength of this city.
 
Having said all that I think a properly made version would be worth a try.  A cheese burger served on toasted buttered rye sounds pretty good.  I just don't trust places around here to make it properly.
"I don't understand what's wrong with thinking of correlation as a pricing convention the way one thinks of Black-Scholes vol. I mean, vol curves aren't "real" anyway, but nobody uses local vol models to price vanilla options." - Taion
 
"But this is blatant ultracrepidarianism on my part." - Taion

I have a dream of a multiplicity of pastramis.

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#3 Sneakeater

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Posted 10 March 2018 - 03:38 PM

They used to have patty melts at Walgreen's.  I liked them a lot.


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#4 voyager

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Posted 10 March 2018 - 05:04 PM

Your Walgreen's melt was probably close to the mark. I always thought of them as Woolworth's lunch counter fare. The quintessential flavor/texture was greasy griddled seeded rye bread, and melted cheese. Burger or tuna were almost secondary. But I doubt if I've had one in 50 years and memory is a dubious ally.

It's not my circus,

not my monkeys.


#5 joethefoodie

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Posted 10 March 2018 - 05:20 PM

Now - I'll argue a tiny bit with Lex and say that there are decent patty melts to be had in NYC...Significant Eater likes them, as a matter of fact (though I am trying to remember where - perhaps at Eisenberg's?).

 

The other night, before a show up in Port Chester, we grabbed dinner at a place that had burgers, and they were serving them on "challah" buns. Feh!!  So I asked if they had rye bread, and then had my burger on toasted rye - it was that much better.



#6 mitchells

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Posted 10 March 2018 - 07:08 PM

How was the show?

All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusions is called a philosopher.
Ambrose Bierce

#7 taion

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Posted 10 March 2018 - 09:13 PM

I love patty melts. Though I don't see why there's anything wrong with diner patty melts.
I didn't tip at Per Se either.

#8 joethefoodie

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Posted 10 March 2018 - 09:40 PM

How was the show?

Very good to excellent.



#9 Daniel

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Posted 11 March 2018 - 12:21 AM

Ive been thinking about asking our bakery to make rye hamburger buns and making pastrami burgers
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#10 StephanieL

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 02:42 AM

I would see patty melts on NJ diner menus.


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#11 Wilfrid

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 04:20 AM

Montmartre served their burger on toast, without calling it a patty melt. Dorian Gray in the EV did that to me too. I know Empire Diner served one on Freitag's menu. I've had them here and there, but like burgers served on baguettes, English muffins, and sweet Hawaiian rolls, it's never better than a regular bun.

#12 Wilfrid

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 04:23 AM

I am not only skeptical of challah buns, I also oppose the brioche movement. Added grease and richness is not what the vehicle should bring to its passenger.

#13 voyager

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 04:44 AM

Aside, it's my memory that it is rye bread that defines a patty-melt. Certsinly in my taste and menu experience.

It's not my circus,

not my monkeys.


#14 Wilfrid

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 03:22 PM

Karma: was just served a breakfast sandwich on a challah roll.

#15 Lex

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 03:42 PM

Montmartre served their burger on toast, without calling it a patty melt. Dorian Gray in the EV did that to me too. I know Empire Diner served one on Freitag's menu. I've had them here and there, but like burgers served on baguettes, English muffins, and sweet Hawaiian rolls, it's never better than a regular bun.

 

Given a choice between a roll and an English muffin I'd always choose the roll.  Unfortunately at Skinflints in Bay Ridge, which we occasionally use for lunch, there is no option.  It's muffins or nothing.  That said, they do a pretty good job but in the back of my head I'm still thinking "this would be better on a roll."

 

A couple of French bistros near us serve their burgers in baguettes.  Initially I was intrigued but I've come to realize that the baguette adds a bit of richness to a dish that already has plenty.

 

I like white buns fine and also kaiser rolls.  The problem is that most of them are poorly made.  White sawdust.    If I can get a good one I'm happy but they're the exception.  Potato rolls have made strides in recent years and I've found they're reliably good.

 

I see Freddy's bar in Brooklyn serves patty melts.  Maybe I'll give one a try there.


"I don't understand what's wrong with thinking of correlation as a pricing convention the way one thinks of Black-Scholes vol. I mean, vol curves aren't "real" anyway, but nobody uses local vol models to price vanilla options." - Taion
 
"But this is blatant ultracrepidarianism on my part." - Taion

I have a dream of a multiplicity of pastramis.

"once the penis came out, there was discussions as to why we didn't order the testicles" - Daniel describing a meal in China