Buns, Burgers and Beyond

Jun 17, 2010

What’s more pleasing than a mouthwatering burger with all the fixings? When you think about it, hamburgers are truly timeless and have become an American culinary icon for decades. Burgers are so popular that most Americans need only drive 5 minutes to the nearest burger joint drive-thru window to satisfy their meaty craving. But these days, consumers have more choices than just a Big Mac from McDonald’s or a Whopper from Burger King, which for a while had become a somewhat “boring” standard.

In today’s restaurant landscape, it is apparent that there’s a resurgence in the interest of the burger. Innovative restaurants such as “The Counter” feature a “Build your Own Burger” menu made from 100% natural angus beef, and “M Burger” goes back to basics focusing on no-frills and big taste with a simple menu similar to In-n-Out’s.

On my latest eating mission, I headed out to the Chicago to take a tour of M Burger. This is a popular new concept by Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises (with about 70 restaurants under their umbrella) has a small footprint but huge traffic.  This progressive restaurant group is known for creating restaurants with theatrical flair and good value and M Buger is surely no exception.

Chicago Skyline

Order Counter
Window Signage
Food Tray
Smart Packaging
Outside Dining at M Burger

It’s clear that the love for the burger will continually fuel great new concepts such as M Burger for years to come.

Burger bonus!

For all you burger lovers who’d like to stay in for dinner but would still like a fancy burger, check out the following recipes from

Burger Breakthrough

Who can resist the smell of burgers on the grill? Even if you’re not running a beer-and-burger joint, you can still flip a few patties with upscale options like lobster, lamb and truffles. Get your buns to work on these and other great burger recipes.

Mini cheese burgers with truffle oil

Chef Kerry Sear, Cascadia Restaurant, Seattle

Chicken burger with sage and roasted red pepper mayonnaise

Chef John Lupi, Appalachia Restaurant, Marble Hill Ga.

Lola’s lamb burger

Chef-Owner Tom Douglas, Lola, Seattle

Lobster burger

Chef John Kekalos, The Falls, New York

Char-grilled pulled pork hamburger

Chef-Partner Dean Small, Synergy Consulting, Laguna Beach Calif.

Search for these and more than 2,000 other professional chef recipes at!