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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...

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Klee's Bar and Grill, Seaside Heights, NJ

Klee's Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon
Where: Klee's Bar and Grill, Seaside Heights, NJ
What: The Jersey Burger (with added fried egg)
Build: 1/2 lb. burger with Taylor ham, cheese and fried egg on Kaiser roll.
Comment: I was passing through Seaside Heights yesterday on business and called my son from the car to scout out a good burger joint in the area. He told me Klee's had almost a 5 star rating on TripAdvisor.com so I made a beeline for the joint. From the outside, the place looked like the kind of joint that would be harboring a great burger... not overstating or over-advertising their success with the ground meat sandwich,  just very chill and all around a cool place to be. I ordered the Jersey Burger my usual temperature of medium-rare and added a fried egg on top for good measure. Long story short, the burger came out very well done. Who the hell does that? I mean, you are cooking for a living, no? And it's a burger for God's sake, how can you possibly mess that up with less than 5 tables of couples in a place that sits dozens more? Is there no pride in cookmanship anymore? And the thing that really gets under my skin was how our waitress handled the situation.  She didn't.  She saw my camera on the table (after we were served) and began asking questions which eventually got around to "how is everything"? 
Now believe me, I'm never, and I mean NEVER one to send food back to the kitchen for fear of sampling the Chef's "special sauce".  However, I was so damn disappointed with the burger that I surprised myself and spoke up. I said: "actually, this is very well done and I ordered it medium/rare".  
Now, I realize I'm at a bar & grill in Seaside Heights, NJ, and it's no Ritz Carlton, but I always thought there was this unwritten law for restaurants where if the waitress hears that you don't like your food, she offers to replace it with what you ordered or something else.... but here at Klee's, there's no such thing.... oh no, in fact her reply to me was: " oh yeah, it looked pretty well done to me too, but I put the ticket in to cook it medium rare just like you ordered!" and promptly walked away.  Really?!  She's just told me that she knew it was not what I ordered but brought it out to me anyway! What else could I do at that point? As I said before, there's no way I was going to send the burger back, I just wanted to hear her offer to, but it never came. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not belly-aching because I had to pay for a crappy burger and the waitress didn't give a damn, I've been to quite a few burger joints and greasy spoons over the years, but the overall feel of this place is just icky. I don't enjoy slamming local Ma & Pa joints either, because I know how hard it is to make a living cooking these days, but if you can't get a simple burger order correct when the house is very slow, should you really be cooking for the public at all? And you might want to teach your staff basic "patronage etiquette".  Klee's gets an EPIC-CRAP-FAIL rating as the waitresses lack of action with a dissatisfied customer was absolutely unacceptable.
I think the reviewers on TripAdvisor.com must be writing their reviews while they are still bombed, or perhaps they are all "Klee's family members.... nothing 5 star about the joint at all.  I'll give it a 1/10 only because being at Klee's would keep me dry if it were raining. 




IT LOOKED SO PROMISING...




WAY TOO WELL DONE...... (ASKED FOR MED/RARE)








MELF JR...





















ALWAYS A SHAME TO SEE GROUND BEEF COOKED TO OBLIVION.....



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