Charlie's Hamburgers, Folsom, PA


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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...

Monday, March 11, 2013

Wendy's Old Fashioned Hamburgers, Wayne, NJ

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Where: Wendy's Old Fashioned Hamburgers, Wayne, NJ
What: Baconator
Build: Two 1/4 lb. patties, 6 strips of applewood smoked bacon, 2 slices American cheese, pickle, lettuce, mayo, bun. 
Comment: This is the second time in a month I've found myself at a fast food institution and the second time I avoided the drive-thru window for the same reasons I did in my last review.  Anyhow, I've had the urge for the flavor of the Baconator for some time now and since I was home running errands all day I figured now was the time to kick that urge in the butt. Wendy's Baconator is a triumph - although Wendy's is considered a fast-food chain, I believe the Baconator represents the first true cross-over from fast-food to slow-food restaurants like 5 Guys and Smashburger. It contains all the "claim-to-fame"  ingredients that the slow-food chains brag about: fresh meat never frozen, fresh ingredients made to your specific order etc., but in most cases you can get it 24/7   at the fast-food window. That's huge, in fact, that's awesome. If you haven't had a Baconator in a long while as I have, try it, you won't be disappointed, and with the added value of the $1 menu to add a few tasty kickers, you'll see how your wallet doesn't take a big hit when ordering quality food that is on par with the new slow-food giants. 
On to the burger...
I couldn't handle this heavy little nugget of goodness for a few minutes as it was so darn hot from being freshly picked off the grill. I unwrapped it and stared in awe at the oozing cheese, mayo and cow juice. The aroma was excellent and I grabbed my camera while waiting for it to cool. This baby was so hot the mayo was melting into the burger's juices... um um um.  I ordered mine with my usual pickle, lettuce and mayo to compliment the burger juice and cheese (next time I'll add raw onion too). The hint of butter flavor on the toasted bun, although slightly artificial tasting, is a nice touch and doesn't leave a film or aftertaste in your mouth. The burger can definitely do without it, but it works well just the same. Three slices of bacon on top and three in the middle of this beauty is just perfect for spreading that pork goodness through and through. The cheese fore and aft is always a huge bonus in my book and the mere weight of this little sucker was substantial enough to get my jowls pumping. As much as it broke my heart to do it, I cut it in half for the autopsy shot and to my surprise it wasn't a God-awful well-done but more of a medium-well... and remember, I drove 2 miles to get home while this was still cooking - had I eaten it there I just may have enjoyed my first medium temperature fast-food burger! Again, it pains me a bit to call this beauty fast-food because it is definitely miles ahead of Mickey D's mystery meat sandwiches (it's just hard for me to call them burgers). All said and done, this burger hits the spot... priced slightly less than the big slow-food chains, I think this is a great bargain. I am very curious to see what the future holds for traditional fast-food chains now that the slow-food giants have put a good sized hit on their revenues. I think burgers like the Baconator are, or at least should be, the wave of the future for the FF chains which I'm sure will have to increase their pricing if they want to keep up with the Joneses quality, but hey, keep the cheap crap mystery meat burgers on the value menu and you'll keep everyone happy, no? All in all, it's going to be very interesting to see where this all leads.  It's my own fault this burger missed the perfect rating... had I eaten it hot off the grill at the restaurant I wouldn't be able to find a thing wrong with it... but since I had to drag it home to photo it, it lost some freshness. My bad - 9/10.

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