Ich Bin Ein Hamburger

We didn’t plan on doing this, but I’ve been told it’s quite characteristic of a trip to New York to entail many distractions, random and sudden new objectives, and a lot of it having to do with food.

On our first night in Manhattan, our local friends took us out to a burger speakeasy, simply called The Burger Joint, and simply hidden behind a velvet curtain in the lobby of the Parker Meridien hotel in mid-town Manhattan.

The following day, we made a plan to walk from 59th Street southward to Eataly, and stopped at Madison Square Park for Kai to get a little play time. There we saw our first Shake Shack, then we saw our first crazy Shake Shack queue and decided to come back some time after lunch hour. It still took over 20 minutes to get our burger, but thankfully, it was a 20 minutes worth waiting. It was also the first burger Kai has ever finished on his own.

Then the next day, we happened to be walking past Minetta Tavern at close to opening time and our local friends decided it was worth our giving the famed Black Label Burger a shot even though the tavern was kinda small, and a little noisy with post-work people hanging out having drinks. Custom-made from dry-aged ribeye, skirt steak and brisket, the patty is sublime, and at the moment, the Black Label stands as the best burger I have ever tasted.

(As we were leaving the tavern, Bono – yes, the Bono of the U2 – was just walking in, and nearly got hit in the head by Kai’s stroller, which was being passed to me overhead – so crowded was the tavern.)

There are other burgers to be had – we have lists, but the first three made for a really good trifecta.

The Smoke Shack from Shake Shack
The Smoke Shack from Shake Shack
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