If there’s such a thing as a celebrity butcher, Pat LaFrieda, whose name is on more great menus than Benedict and his eggs, is it. From the vaunted Black Label Burger at Minetta Tavern to the Shake Shack patties, the local purveyor rules the country as the undisputed king of meat. Chefs, butchers and customers alike get their red-meat fix with a mouth-watering array of premium prime cuts. At our Dumbo market, the Brooklyn native will be serving his own signature selections of meat featured in superb cheesesteaks, burgers and ‘the world’s greatest hot dog.
What should a burger be? Fast food adjacent? Cooling in a stack on a paper plate beside a backyard grill. Stunt-priced at $86 and topped with a fleck of edible gold that sells for $4 on Amazon? Then, what should a burger be? Isn’t a sausage, egg and cheese a burger, in its way, like a hotdog is—hush; let’s not.
In New York City, burgers are all of this and more, depending on the occasion, your good sense, and credit limit. They inspire bolts of nostalgia, blasts to the past, and promises of what’s ahead. And, sometimes, they’re just dinner.
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