From stunning views, to strong drinks, to a tasty burger, Bali Hai checks all the boxes. Juicy half-pounders are grilled to order and topped with a double spread of killer truffle black pepper mayo. You can get a salad on the side, but the brown butter fries should be considered mandatory, as should the tiki drinks.
In honor of National Cheesecake Day (celebrated on July 30th), here is an in-depth look at three burgers at The Cheesecake Factory, including a classic burger, a “Skinnylicious” burger, and one topped with a deep-fried ball of breaded macaroni and cheese and creamy cheese sauce.
San Diego Magazine’s Best-Of SD issue has a ton of intel, including a round-up of the best restaurants of 2012. If you keep flipping to the South Bay section, you’ll see my top 10 places to Eat Your Way Around South Bay, including everything from fro-yo to fusion fare, like MJ’s Yogurt Time and Deli in Chula Vista, where you can get a heaping plate of fries and meat, topped with cheese, creamy sauces, and two fried eggs. The “House Fries” are their top seller (and make your typical carne asada fries look downright dainty).
I never got swept up by the bacon craze of the early aughts. Bacon on a club sandwich? Yes. Bacon on cupcakes? Oh hell no. But, one thing to come out of the nation’s preoccupation with pork is bacon jam, which can make an excellent addition to a burger.
Some burgers look great, but taste terrible. For others, the reverse is true. The burger at Leroy’s Kitchen + Lounge, made with 100% fresh-ground brisket, is both visually stunning and scrumptious.
Saturday’s brunch is the reason why I’ve been eating “air sandwiches” the last couple of mornings… but I have no regrets. The meal started with “Coffee and Doughnuts” (a plate of beignets with Belgian chocolate dipping sauce and raspberry compote), followed by a BLT salad (with crispy pork belly, poached eggs, and heirloom tomatoes), and ended with a plate of French toast with Chambord reduction, mixed berry compote, and quite possibly the best topping to ever grace French toast: raspberry mascarpone.
There’s a lot going on with The Red Door’s brunch burger, but it works (and stays intact) surprisingly well. The half-pound patty is topped with aged cheddar cheese, applewood-smoked bacon, fresh veggies, a fried egg, and hollandaise sauce.
Finally, there’s another spot to score pizza by the slice in Little Italy. Napizza specializes in Roman-style pizza, made with dough that’s proofed for a full 72 hours before being baked for over 30 minutes. They’ve got the standard pepperoni and margherita, plus more inspired options like pizza topped with smoked salmon, cream cheese, and capers… but so far, my favorite slice is the Bapo.
When I’m setting out to review a burger, my mental checklist is as follows: camera, memory card (crucial!), and a back-up battery. Other things, like my ID, sometimes get left behind. That’s exactly what happened on my last review, at Starlite. Luckily, the manager was more than understanding and ushered me in anyway. It’s a good thing, because I had gone too long without sharing the good news about their Brandt beef burgers and kick-ass mules.
Las Vegas is a town for gambling, but it’s no fun to roll the dice on lunch and lose. I scoured the Strip looking for the best burgers and discovered a handful of worthy options, one of which landed securely in my top 5 burgers of all time. Find out all of my picks on Serious Eats.