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#1 Rail Paul

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 12:35 AM

Dee and I tried Daniel Bolud's $29 hamburger tonight. It was tasty, delicious, and expensive.

db Bistro Moderne is on 44th street, between Fifth and Sixth. Very attractive, cool, nicely proportioned place. Adjacent to Triomphe (which we like) and the Algonquin (ditto).

The burger is a complex project. About ten oz, composed of an outer ring of sirloin, an inner ring of short rib meat cooked in a truffle wine reduction, then scraped off the bone, and an inner, inner piece of foie gras. The burger is presented as a parmesan roll (top and bottom), with (from the top), finely chopped celery with a horseradish mayonannaise, a slightly reduced tomato slice, the burger, and more celery and the bottom. Served with pommes frites (puffed potatoes) and french fries. We had both.

The burger was served as ordered, medium rare. Sliced in half (vertically), one side had a "d" skewer, the other had a "b" skewer. They were presented with the db facing the customer. This was a great burger. Wonderful, very beefy, but very little plate juice. With one bite, the diner grabbed beef, short ribs, and foie.

As noted, this was a very good burger. But, for $29, it should be superb, outstanding, and maybe orgasmic. Neither Dee nor I thought it was as good as the $16 Kobe Burger at the Burger Bar in Las Vegas. Fries and frites were good, although the frites were just warm when served.

The meal was preceded by an excellent eggplant caviar. Finely chopped broiled eggplant and sage, served with one inch disks of toasted bread.

Service was very good. Attentive, watchful, team of three people covered four tables. I was impressed.

We boosted the bill with a CDP Roger Sabot 2000 ($70) and a single dessert of molten chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream. All in, the tab came to $180 with tip. That's a lot for two burgers, fries and a $70 bottle of wine

Rating of A for burger, B for value...

Edited by Rail Paul, 03 May 2004 - 12:49 AM.

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

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#2 pixelchef

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 01:24 AM

Sounds delicious, and luxirious as hell. I'm reminded of my favourite burger in Toronto (at Bymark). It is composed as such:

Grilled Prime U.S. Burger, 8 oz. With Molten Brie de Meaux Cheese, Grilled Porcini Mushrooms, Crisp Rosemary Onion Rings, Shaved Truffle & Truffle Mustard Aioli.

Cooked to a perfect medium-rare, it is truly incredible. Oh, how I love thee posh burger. :)

#3 Rail Paul

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 01:36 AM

Definitely sounds like it had a similar origin. I think I like your version more.

What did they do when US prime was unavailable in Upper Canada?

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#4 pixelchef

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 02:58 AM

Canada Prime beef is of the same quality as US Prime. It's actually even more rare than US Prime here in Toronto for the regular consumer (when US Prime is legal). Almost all of it is sold to restaurants, and VERY little (something like 0.67% of all beef produced in Canada) is available retail, which is very unfortunate, as it is truly wonderful. I honestly can't tell the difference between US Prime and Canada Prime beef.

Come visit, Paul! :)

#5 Melonious Thunk

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 03:56 AM

I've had this "burger" and loved it. It is a misnomer to call it a "burger." I think of the dish as the equivalent of "steak frites" at an elevated level. And $29 for this dish is not excessive. The combination of short ribs, sirloin and foies gras on a house baked onion roll is fabulous. And the generous and delicious frites make it a satisfying meal.
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#6 awbrig

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 05:03 AM

That sounds like the most fantastic meal that you would ever eat with your hands!

Was the eggplant caviar an amuse, complimentary?
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#7 Rail Paul

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 12:32 PM

Was the eggplant caviar an amuse, complimentary?


yes

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#8 Wilfrid1

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 02:31 PM

I seem to recall Cabby and I tackling a more expensive version with extra truffles, one lunchtime a while ago. I can't remember how much that set us back.
Elect-a-lujah

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#9 cabrales

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 02:50 PM

Probably around $45-50/person before tax/tips/drink. It was that fresh truffle version of the burger, called Royale (with pommes souffles, although the pommes souffles later became available upon request even with the original version of the burger), that precipitated the burger wars when Old Homestead came forth with the Kobe burger.

I really like the db burger in any version. I've had some version of the burger perhaps five or six times. Whenever I go to db now, I have just the burger with a quartino (that's not what it's called there, but the volume is not dissimilar) of red.

#10 Wilfrid1

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 03:20 PM

I would certainly recommend the burger as the best reason to go to dB.
Elect-a-lujah

***Every Monday***At the Sign of the Pink Pig.

If the author could go around the place hitting random readers with a rubber hammer, the Pink Pig would still be worth a visit.

#11 ahr

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 03:54 PM

I once had the burger at db, sans foie gras insofar as I could tell.

Has anyone tried their bouillabaisse? I think it's a Friday (lunch?) special.
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#12 cabrales

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 03:56 PM

ahr -- The burger at db is always with foie gras. It's just not so evident sometimes, because it is generally towards the middle of the meat patty. Also not evident sometimes are the strands of short ribs, although those are a bit more prominent in the burger than the foie.

#13 Rail Paul

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Posted 05 May 2004 - 02:21 PM

ahr -- The burger at db is always with foie gras. It's just not so evident sometimes, because it is generally towards the middle of the meat patty. Also not evident sometimes are the strands of short ribs, although those are a bit more prominent in the burger than the foie.

The burger was presented to us already sliced vertically, and partly opened to form an upside down V.

The server was careful to note the center, the short rib wrap, and the sirloin in his presentation.

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#14 ahr

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Posted 05 May 2004 - 03:53 PM

My burger was deposited on the table without expository ceremony, and I remain convinced that it was foieless. FWIW, a reliable poster asserts on another board that "they took it out for a brief while, but restored it." Culinary experiment, or flirtatation with cost control?
"To Serve Man"
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#15 Slapsie Maxie

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Posted 22 May 2004 - 06:33 PM

So, it was a nice morning

A run in the park. A stroll down to look at the shops in the new(ish) Time Warner building ( I see orange is the new colour for women this summer which means they will, for the most part, be wandering around in orange velour sweatpants looking for all the world like badly made smoothies ) A stroll down thru midtown which was thronged with tourists from the midwest ( " I am so psyched we're going to the Billy Joel musical tonight") and a swift glass of something in the Blue Bar at The Algonquin

All this brought me to just after midday and the bar area of DB Moderne.

Welcomed like a bad smell ( the service was efficient throughout my brief meal, but entirely charmless ) and perched at the bar, I began with a delicious Nora Albarino which was perfect on such a warm day. They brought some bread which I tried a little of. It was only worth trying a little of

I ordered the burger, natch and a glass of Ramirez Rioja to accompany it.

The burger came medium rare not rare as I asked, but it looked an appetising tower of food along with the cone of fries and the relishes.

While it tasted really rather good, I have to be honest and say that I am not convinced that using such great ingredients on a burger achieves anything. I suspect the style of cooking debases the ingredient rather than raising the stature of the end result. The inclusion of the foie was a bit of a joke. I am not sure how one manages the thinness of a slice of foie, but you would have needed a micrometer to measure the teensiest bit of foie imaginable used in the burger. It also tasted of nothing but maybe it evaporated en route from plate to mouth. I am sure you could have read a newspaper through it. The small amount of short rib was better. Perhaps I should have ordered a plate of that instead. The beef itself was pretty good, but really $20 more good? I am not sure.

I sampled a handful of fries, and they were fine. I am sure there are lots of places that do them just as well.

35 mins later and one copy of Entertainment magazine to the good, I left with hearty wave and handshake from the staff who had all become firm friends by this time and promised to visit me in London ( actually, I slucnk out without so much as a goodbye from the primarily french waitstaff who were hunkering down with those who looked like they might be spending more money )

$56 lighter ( about £35 ) Thank the Lord they don't offer a supersize option. I would have had to sell a kidney

Glad I tried it. Can't see any reason to ever do it again

S