Hamburger Review: Gramercy Tavern, NYC

The Platonic Ideal of the 'Chef Burger.'

I should state right off the bat that I am inherently prejudiced against the so-called "chef burger." It’s not that chefs can’t make delicious hamburgers with all sorts of interesting and novel ingredients — of course they can. But does an even competently prepared cheeseburger — beef, white bun, American cheese — that can be purchased almost anywhere for $6 really need improvement? I think not. Of course there are other factors that a chef-driven burger brings to the table. The provenance of the ingredients for one, mired as that is in the tropes of sustainability and locavorism. And, of course, there is skill, technique, and imagination. Or at least one would hope.