Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The Quest for The Perfect Cheeseburger

I don’t know what it is about a burger. Perhaps it’s the juicy meat patty or the melty cheese; maybe it’s the soft bun or a nice hard ciabatta bun! Man, I was in heaven when Jack in The Box had the Ciabatta burger! Pretzel buns never really struck me though. I mean seriously…what was that about? I love a Wendy's Baconator, and Scott has totally sold me on In N Out's Double Double Animal Style, my favorite though is BBQ Bacon and Cheddar burger from Smashburger...that with some SmashFries...yum!

Clearly, I have a thing about burgers.

My mom loves to tell the story about taking me to a fancy restaurant when I was 10 years old. I had made the honor roll in Mrs. Hayes 5th grade at Farallone View Elementary. We got dressed up one morning and she took me into the city, San Francisco to Ghirardelli Square. I don’t remember the name of the place, but I remember the view of the bay and of people flying kites in a park outside the restaurant. I remember the big heavy menus and the fancy white table cloths.

I remember the set up…Mom told me that I could have anything I wanted. She explained to the waiter that I had made the honor roll and we were celebrating. I ordered a hamburger. The chef must have died that day…or maybe he had a 10-year-old and understood. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t on the menu, but I got my burger.

So hamburgers and I go way back.

Imagine my delight a year ago when I found out that the guy I was dating loved hamburgers too! It was early on in our relationship when we began to go on road trips for a burger. Our first adventure was a trip to Bun Huggers in Flagstaff.

Bun Huggers was one of my favorite spots when I was in college at Northern Arizona University. It was within walking distance of campus. The beer was cold, the fried zucchini was hot and delicious and there was a huge island with all kinds of fixings for my burger! On cold winter days in Flagstaff my friends and I would meet there for a burger and a pitcher of beer. The food was cheap and satisfying, and the interior is just what one would expect in a college town, warm wood tones, cheap but sturdy furniture, and you sit at the table on a wooden box 

Last summer in the blush of our new fun relationship, we were talking about what to do one day and out of the blue, I suggested that we road trip to Flagstaff for a burger. Scott happily agreed. Negotiations ensued (we negotiate A LOT) and plans quickly came together. Within a couple of hours, we were on our first Burger Road Trip. The plan was simple…2 hours up to Flagstaff, grab a burger, come home.

I’m sitting here with a big goofy grin on my face.

It took longer than planned. It included a beautiful drive around Mormon Lake and a spectacular view of the sunset. It was dark by the time we got to Bun Huggers.

The burgers and the zucchini were just as good as I remembered, I skipped the beer this time and had a Coke. Scott tried the fries…which have never been really good. Bunhuggers is famous for their "zuchs” the fries...not so much. 

It was a great date. We had fun, we talked a lot, we saw pretty stuff…and we had burgers.I look back and I’m pretty sure that was when I knew I had met a really great guy. It was the beginning of many burger adventures for us. And with so many burger places left to explore...the quest continues :-)

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