Charlie's Hamburgers, Folsom, PA



About Me

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...

Wednesday, August 21, 2019


Paesano's - 152 W. Girard Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 

I know there are some truly great sandwich makers in the Philly area, Tony Luke's, Shank's Original, Tommy DiNic's, Dalessandro's, John's Roast Pork, to name only a few. I also fully understand and appreciate personal preference when it comes to food, but believe me, Paesano’s is in a class by itself. 

With that said, it's not going to be easy to describe these sandwiches with mere words. I should probably just step away from the keyboard and tell you to go there to taste them for yourself. I'm apologizing in advance for the half-eaten photos. (I'm sorry, I was hungry).

In keeping with the spirit of this blog, I owe you a little insight as to what you'll experience at Paesano's, so here goes...

Finding the best places to eat is very easy, all you need to do is look for one with a full parking lot or a line out the door - 


The length of the order line at Paesano's proved my theory correct, so I poised myself ready to wait. 

The moment I set foot in the place I was hit with pungent aromatics and since Paesano's has very little square footage, the pots of sauces and gravy's steeping on the stove top keep the storefront windows fogged-up from Fall through Winter. The interior walls are plastered with chalkboards crammed with hand-written menu items. Reading them while waiting on line will certainly build your appetite. 

I'm not going to comment on the restaurant any further, it's time to get to the food...

I thought it was odd that so many sandwiches were topped with a fried egg - some fried light, some hard, (I don't think it odd anymore).

This is the PAESANO...  $8.50
Beef brisket, horseradish mayo, roasted tomatoes, pepperoncino (the generic Italian name for hot chili peppers), sharp provolone & fried egg.

The brisket was extremely tender and juicy with flavor and spices that were as undecipherable as they were delicious. The richness of the egg over-easy contrasted perfectly with the pepperoncino. The addition of horseradish mayo and provolone cheese was nothing shy of perfection. For me, this sandwich is on my list of one of the most memorable I've ever eaten.

More Paesano...

Here are some photos of the 9th street Italian market Philly.

Fresh produce...

Exotic meats butcher....

More street fare...

Claudio's Italian specialties...

Exotic coffees and teas...

Eastern State Penitentiary - A great road trip for Halloween

More markets...

Back to Paesano's sandwiches...

Workin' the magic...

The BOLOGNESE...  $8.50
Crispy fried lasagna bolognese, smoked mozzarella, red sauce & fried egg.

If you're a true macaroni lover, you're going to love "The Bolognese." Paesano's has managed to package pasta into a hand-held meal and it's fantastic. I was never a big fan of bolognese sauce, but it's clear to me now that I simply never had it this good.  The gravy is to die for and even though the "crispy" fried lasagna is not so crispy, it doesn't matter. 

Poor Anthony...

The ARISTA...  $8.50
Whole roasted suckling pig, broccoli rabe, Italian long hots & sharp provolone. 

For those of you who are experimenting with pork, broccoli rabe and sharp provolone, please step aside. Yours is not going to be as good as Paesano's. In fact, it won't even be close. Tender meat? This pork was cotton soft and the broccoli rabe was sauteed with garlic and oil to perfection with the sharp provolone adding yet another layer of flavor. With all these incredible flavors, there was only one thing that could cut through all the richness while adding a traditional Italian flavor; The Italian long-hots. They completed the flavor profile for this fantastic sandwich!

The Arista before we violated it...

The GUSTAIO...  $9.50
Roasted lamb sausage, sun dried cherry mostarda (Mostarda is a northern Italian condiment made of candied fruit and a mustard-flavored syrup), Gorgonzola spread, roasted tomatoes, fennel and arugula in a crispy flatbread.

We originally ordered three sandwiches, but I couldn’t get the ingredients of the Gustaio off my mind so I ordered it (you read the ingredients, how could I not order it?). The flavor combinations were perfect – if not for the overly salty sausage, this would have been in contention for my #1 favorite.

 Back end of the Gustaio...


For me, it's not just the combination of ingredients that stand out in a Paesano sandwich, it's the PORTION of each ingredient within each sandwich that makes them great.

An honorable mention goes to Paesano's bread. I'd put it up against some NJ and NYC breads (I feel NJ and NYC breads are still some of the best in the world). 

Edited re-post from 2014

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

The Beach Haven Fishery

2115 Long Beach Blvd, Spray Beach, 08008 

The Bermuda Fish Sandwich

Beer battered Cod filet's, tartar sauce top and bottom, coleslaw, tomato, red onion on toasted raisin bread.

This is my first review of the year for the awesome BHF. I was glad to be back. How I missed the fresh fish market and lunch and dinner entrees. This is the only place on LBI to get fresh caught fish cooked and dressed to perfection. But this time my review is not about a dinner entree, it's about their newest lunch special creation that blew me away. I had an "OMG" moment with the first bite. 

My wife stumbled onto this sandwich while booking an upcoming vacation to Bermuda. Apparently it's a "thing" in Bermuda and has been for dozens of years, to the point where local food establishments participate in an annual Bermuda Fish Sandwich competition. (Traditionally, the sandwich is served with a bottle of ginger beer).

When I read the ingredients of the sandwich I was a bit taken back by the combination of fish and raisin bread, but the combination not only works, it's absolutely delicious and this merger of sweet and savory is perfectly executed by the BHF staff. 

Stop by for a culinary treat this summer, and while you're there, be sure to see the amazing fresh fish market. Nothing is farm raised.

If this were a burger, it would slide easily into home with at 10/10 on the BC rating scale.

Dine in air conditioning or outside on a beautiful day or night...

And don't pass up a trip to the fish market, there's some incredible stuff going on behind this door...

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Chick-Fil-A, Englewood, NJ

2 Nathaniel Pl, Englewood, NJ 07631


Chick-Fil-A Deluxe Sandwich

Seasoned chicken breast,  toasted buttered bun, dill pickle chips, Leaf lettuce, tomato and American cheese.

Chick-Fil-A advertises hand-breaded chicken, pressure cooked in 100% refined peanut oil and served on a toasted buttered bun with dill pickle chips, green leaf lettuce, tomato and American cheese. And this is what you get, however, heat is an important component for me. My sandwich wasn't stone cold, but it was below room temperature. There wasn't even enough warmth to melt the cheese. I know fast food restaurants vary with consistency but this sandwich shouldn't have been served. I'll give Chick-Fil-A another shot, but even if the sandwich is blazing hot, I'll never understand all the hype. Try this non-burger sandwich for yourself and let me know what you think in the comment section. 

Now, take it from me, if you're looking for an AMAZING chicken sandwich, try The American Chicken Cutlet Sandwich at Steve's Hamburgers in Garfield, NJ. Yes, it's a burger joint, but it's a burger joint that's serving up one of the best chicken sandwiches you'll ever throw down your gullet.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

State Line Family Restaurant

State Line Family Restaurant
96 NY-303
Tappan, NY 10983


8 oz. burger, American cheese, sautéed onions, bacon, lettuce, tomato, on a Kaiser bun.

The State Line Family Restaurant (not to be confused with the State Line diner in Mahwah, NJ) was a quaint throw-back to a 1970's dining experience for me. A bright and cheery family eatery with friendly staff and very good food. The burger was every bit as good as the photos show. I nixed the lettuce and tomato and enjoyed a half pound of beef with American cheese, fried onions and crisp bacon. Cooked to a perfect medium-rare, and I was a happy camper all around. If you're ever cruising on highway 303 in Tappan NY, be sure to stop.

The State Line Burger receives a 9.1/10 on the BC rating scale.

Criteria for ratings:
(I rate each of these with a 1 to 10 rating)

Meat flavor 8
Juiciness 8
Size 10
Freshness 9
Burger to bun ratio 10
Bun Type 8
Overall taste with selected condiments 8.5
Edibility 10
Temperature 10

BC Rating Scale:

Epic-Crap-Fail 1.0 - 2.9

Won't be back 3.0 - 5.9

Would try again if convenient. 6.0 - 7.9

I'll definitely be back 8.0 - 8.9

Keep 'em coming 9.0 - 10