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No Bull Burger Purist - Born and raised in NJ, the heart of the tri-state area and home to the oldest (and best) burger joints in the country. I don't need all the frilly toppings, happy servers or trendy decor, just a good burger...

The Crew

The Crew

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Plaza 23 Diner, Pompton Plains, NJ

Where:
Plaza 23 Diner
411 NJ-23, Pompton Plains, NJ

Build:This is your typical 8-oz. New Jersey diner burger patty (seemed more like a 6-oz. patty to me) with cheddar cheese, raw white onion, two breaded onion rings, horseradish sauce, sesame seed bun.

Comments: 
If you are ever in the Wayne/Pompton Plains area, The Plaza 23 Diner is a nice, clean place to grab a quick bite. Overall I'd rate this diner "average,” but with New Jersey's stiff diner competition, average isn't a bad thing. 

With that said, I'm happy to report that on this day I enjoyed an above-average burger.

My burger was cooked according to my medium-rare request, which was a huge plus considering some of my recent reviews, and the toppings I chose that day were just what my taste buds were calling for.
 The burger had a nice char-grill flavor, and I went home a happy camper.
My one gripe – for a NJ diner, the portions are smaller than other diners.

All in all a good day considering getting a burger at a diner is usually hit or miss.

In the past, my wife and I have ordered other items at this diner including dinner entrees which we were never quite happy with. As I said, this diner is average, which is quite common. 

Just a few tweaks in the kitchen, a few new techniques by the chef, a tad more attention to detail by the cooks and so many of these diners could be standouts. So close, yet so far... 

Overall, a "decent" experience.

This Plaza 23 Diner burger lands an 8.8\10 on the BC rating scale. 





















































Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Hardee's, Fort Pierce, Florida

Where:
Hardee's200 S Kings Hwy,
Fort Pierce, FL 34945
(772) 489-2184

What:
Hardee's Classic Double Cheeseburger

Build:
Double meat, double cheese, grilled onions, Thousand Island, lettuce, & tomato on seeded bun.

Comments: 

It seems that my reviews are the shortest when the burgers I'm reviewing are either so horrible that I just don't want to take the time to say anything about them, or, the burger is so damn good, it's hard to find words that properly do it justice.

This is one of those exceedingly short reviews.

I stopped at the Hardee's in Fort Pierce Florida not far off route 95 en route from NJ to FL with my father-in-law.
The crowd in and about the restaurant resembled ex-convicts which made for an interesting atmosphere. Needless to say, we ordered with the intention of eating as fast as we could and leaving with the contents of our wallets intact.

The food was crap. In fact, the burger patties did not taste like burgers, but some other soy-filler product which is on par with livestock feed.

With that said, please keep in mind this was not our first visit to Hardee's. In fact, we used to love eating Hardee's burgers and the little known, but delicious, hot ham and cheese sandwich.

But after the last few attempts at eating a Hardee's burger with the false hope that it would actually resemble a burger, we have given up.

I’m not sure how Hardee's plans on keeping their books in the black based on their poor management that is "okay" with serving burgers like the ones in the photos I took.

Hardee's, you took our money for something that you call "food"... wrong, so very wrong. See for yourself in the photos that follow...

A BC Burger Blog First:

Hardee's burger is not worthy of receiving a rating on this blog.

This was an Epic-Crap-Fail.

Welcome to Florida.











And the stink of it is, I wanted to buy this cool clown shirt after we ate from the store in the adjoining building, but I was too pissed to remember to go back and buy it.












Even the ever-reliable hot ham & cheese was bad....










Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Culver's Jupiter, FL

Where:
Culver’s1108 Military Trail,Jupiter, FL 33458
561-529-3772
https://www.culvers.com/restaurants/jupiter-fl-military-trl

What:
Butterburger Cheese

Build:
"Never frozen" Midwest-raised beef, American cheese made in Wisconsin on a lightly buttered, toasted bun.

Comments: 

45…count'em…45 minutes it took to receive our order.... and it was cold.

Yep, Culver’s of Jupiter Florida wins the prize for the worst-managed burger chain I've ever come across.

Ever since Culver's recently opened some time in December of 2016 (approximately), my father-in-law and I have been waiting for the novelty of "the new burger joint in town" to wear off. We wanted to go once the staff was fully trained and running like a fine-tuned machine.

Perhaps we should've waited until the summer months? Of 2024?

Sidebar: This is my 270th review on this blog. I do not get a thrill from knocking anyone, however, if you are willing to take my money in exchange for services and/or product, then I'd like to think we mutually agree on the value of the deal. That is to say, you make the percent margin you are entitled to and charge me a fair price for it. Deal.

This was no fair deal. This deal was heavily weighted in Culver's favor. 45 minutes waiting for our food (a burger for heaven's sake!), 20 minutes of which were spent standing hovering over tables like vultures until one was free.

Who needs this? I can go to so many eateries in the Jupiter area and God knows there are thousands of them where we can sit and eat in comfort in a timely fashion.

On the pro side, we could tell the meat was tasty and I would probably enjoy a Culver's burger that is cooked correctly and served in a reasonable amount of time, as well as served hot. And with a butter flavor that actually exists beyond the words on the menu.

Also, there is a sign on the entrance door which reads:

PROUDLY OWNED AND OPERATED:
 DEBBIE NAYLON

Ms. Naylon, I'm here to tell you, you may want to drop the word "proudly" from the sign because there was nothing to be proud of on January 15, 2017.

The number of staff members was not the issue, in fact there seemed to be a dozen kids in blue shirts and hats, most of them bumping into each other looking for their destination tables. The issue lies in the food not being prepared fast enough.

This particular Culver's gets a 3.5\10 on the BC rating scale.

We can't express our disappointment enough after all our anticipation... such a shame. I hope other Culver's are managed better, it'd be a shame if they are all like this one.













































The burgers weren't warm enough to melt the cheese...









Real life photo of Culver's Butterburger Cheeseburger.



Glamour shot of Culver's Butterburger Cheeseburger. 



























Saturday, February 18, 2017

Firehouse Subs, Totowa, NJ

Where:
Firehouse Subs
205 US Hwy 46 West Unit E Totowa, NJ
07512 store #1156
http://www.firehousesubs.com/
phone: (973)837-8022

What:
Italian submarine sandwich

Build:
Ham, pepperoni, provolone cheese, salami, lettuce, tomato, onion, dressing, toasted sub roll. 

Comments: 

"Put the fire out Chief"
~Captain Quint

Disappointed. Yet another generic sandwich chain joins the market. I must be missing something, how these sandwich chains are making it is beyond me. There is obviously a market for highly processed cold cut sandwich chains since they keep popping up across the country, but I just don't get it. I haven't researched sandwich shop national sales yet but it's something I will do right after this review is written. For now, I'm just an ordinary Joe in search of a good sandwich that will be kind to my taste buds and fill my empty belly.

The concept, design and execution are pretty cool; helmets and axes hanging on the wall, and the colors and graphics all make for a great visual. But unfortunately it does not compensate for the product.

The sandwiches are like most sandwich chain food – watered down versions of a legit delicatessen. And there are so many sandwich chains to choose from. Here is a list of the top 500 of 2016…

http://www.restaurantbusinessonline.com/special-reports/top-500-chains/2016-top-500-sandwich-chains

There are a staggering 500 because the list includes hamburger, taco, Asian, and other chains that serve sandwiches. The link I've provided shows just the chains from the "sandwich" category.
Note, the "rank" column shows their ranking compared to the full list of chains, so you could technically number these 1 through 19 since they represent only the sandwich category.

The demand for these types of sodium-laced sandwiches is mind blowing. I'm convinced the key to a good sandwich is not necessarily what’s in the sandwich but how it's put together that makes winners and losers in the sandwich game. Some sandwich chains, I have to say, are decent, (my favorite being Wawa subs), but how in the world Arby's makes enough money to open their doors is mystifying. Ever have a "roast beef" sandwich there? Talk about mystery meat. Do it, go ahead, do it, you won't.
Back to the Firehouse...
The best description of this sandwich is (yawn) "ho-hum". Check my photos and I'm sure you'll agree.








































Friday, February 10, 2017

PIERRE FOODS - FROZEN ANGUS CHEESEBURGER



Where:
Costco store #149NJ-23, Wayne, NJ 07470
(973) 339-4006

What:
AdvancePierre® Foods Steak-EZE® Angus Cheeseburger

Comments:

I've always believed that fast food has its place in the world – so to all of the food snobs and haters, I’ll start off by saying you're missing out by not trying new types of food products; frozen or otherwise.

With that being said (I'll get this over with quick), these burgers are meant for consumption under certain conditions only. Some of these conditions can be described as:
intoxicated, inebriated, s*itfaced, stoned, tipsy, buzzed, crocked, high, wasted, totaled, plastered, stewed, tanked, potted, lit, juiced, and of course, drunk.

Yes, that is what they are good for... soaking up alcohol in the stomach.

The meat is of the same variety as any frozen Salisbury steak TV dinner. It resembles beef and it even smells like beef. This brand of frozen burger actually has a descent char flavor, but it's all the same mystery meat.
I tried to doctor mine up with some extra cheese and lettuce since nuking the burger per the instructions liquefies the cheese to infinity and beyond.

One thing to note was that I had no adverse gastro effects. Would I buy them again? Probably, since on that rare occasion when I need help dispersing alcohol they will definitely come in handy.

No rating on this since I'm not quite sure it classifies as a burger...

You can read my review of Walmart's frozen cheeseburger offerings from September of 2014 here:
http://billcianciburgerreviews.blogspot.com/2014/09/drive-thru-cheeseburger-shameful-or.html


























Of all the frozen burgers I've tried (not counting White Castle burgers) these, Sandwich Bros. were probably the best. I think being encased in a pita helped retain moisture and flavor...