251 Geary St
San Francisco, California 94102
Eater(s): Megan & Charlie
Price: $11.25 (.75 more for cheese) plus lettuce, tomato, onions, and a pickle. Fries were an additional $3.35.
Picture this: we’re meeting at the mall for a burger. Cue the Fast Times at Ridgemont High Soundtrack and let’s do this! Honestly, I was excited and eager to try out Chef Hubert Keller’s Burger Bar (SF branch). Chef Keller is a renowned chef who chose to curate a restaurant that focused on burgers. Who wouldn’t have at least mildly elevated expectations?! Burger Bar is perched high above Union Square on the 6th floor of the Macy’s on Geary. The restaurant is essentially a large, stark, chilly, sports bar (with TVs in the booths!) Just ordering your burger is quite the process. As always, Megan and I wanted a cheeseburger. Plain and simple…except at the Burger Bar. Unless you wanted a burger with some fancy – yet intuitive – title, you had to order your burger piece-by-piece. I chose the Country Natural beef, which was overcooked and under-seasoned, the sesame bun from a private baker in Berkeley (don’t worry you don’t know him), which was lightly buttered and lightly toasted and comically large, and swiss cheese, which came from nowhere special. Perhaps the Country Natural cows are too fit, lacking the appropriate amount of fat to provide that savory burger taste I love oh so much…or maybe they just fucked up my order. Either way, I should have ordered my burger medium-rare/rare. Lesson learned.
Size: 1/2 lb.
Ranch: Country Natural. “A sustainable farm in Oregon.” She had that one prepared, let me tell you. It rolled right off her tongue
Accouterments: Lettuce, Tomato, Red Onions, and Pickle
Beer Availability: A large selection of bottles and a fair number on draft, but nothing all that different or interesting…Oh, what is that Megan? Megan would like me to inform you that “they had like 20 beers on tap and 40 bottles, which is pretty huge.” So there ya go!
Ambiance: It felt like a sports bar for European tourists. While we were treated to a really nice view, the ambiance was sterile and the decor was non-existent. That said, the server was very patient with us as we stressed over our burger bun selections.
Burger Rating: 1 standard deviation below the mean.