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 Hamburgers

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pennypincher

  • Total Posts: 54
  • Joined: 5/25/2003
  • Location: Prescott, AZ
Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 12:20 PM (permalink)

How does one restaurant make a better hamburger than another using the same exact mixture of beef without adding any other ingredients?

Comparing McDonald's or other fast food hamburger places to that
fancy hamburger place that charges $5-6-10 for the same thing, not counting the weight of the meat.

I've tried McDonalds's etc. & the $5-6-10 hamburgers in those upscale restaurants and they taste the same to me. I can't tell the difference.
 
#1
    wanderingjew

    • Total Posts: 7379
    • Joined: 1/18/2001
    • Location: East Greenwich/ Warwick, RI
    • Roadfood Insider
    RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 12:23 PM (permalink)
    I haven't stepped foot in a McDonald's in years, so I can't tell you what they taste like, however My local watering hole, an Irish Pub called Ward's has one of the best burgers in Rhode Island.
     
    #2
      seafarer john

      RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 12:46 PM (permalink)
      Pennypincher's taste buds must have died. Does anyone out there know of a cure for that sorrowful condition.

      I' ve had some 5 or 6 dollar hamburgers that were at least as bad as the average national chain's offerings. I've also had some really excellent hamburgers ranging in price from about 2 bucks to about 10 bucks- but I doubt any of them were really worth over 5 bucks - unless one wants to pay for "celebrity" watching or a really exotic
      ambience. Some of the worst burgers I've ever had were served by my friends and neighbors in their own back yards off their own mismanaged grills.





       
      #3
        Michael Hoffman

        • Total Posts: 17795
        • Joined: 7/1/2000
        • Location: Gahanna, OH
        RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 12:51 PM (permalink)
        What makes you think that all restaurants use the same exact mixture of beef and do not add any other ingredients?

        The ground meat used in hamburgers varies from place to place. As an example, one restaurant might use just ground round and another might use chuck. Then there's the difference in the amount of fat used in hamburgers. One place might insist that all it's ground beef have 80 percent meat and 20 percent fat, while another might prefer an 85-15 ratio.

        While a McDonald's doesn't season its meat, your local diner probably does.

        And then there's the method of cooking the burger. One of the easiest ways to ruin a burger is to press down on it during cooking. That gets rid of the fat, and the fat is where the taste resides.

        One thing: I cannot imagine why you are unable to tell the difference between a McDonald's hamburger and a hamburger from what you describe as an upscale restaurant.
         
        #4
          hatteras04

          • Total Posts: 1070
          • Joined: 5/14/2003
          • Location: Columbus, OH
          RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 1:15 PM (permalink)
          What makes you think there are no other ingredients added? McDonald's does their best to make sure that everything tastes exactly the same at every location. I don't think that could be done without some kind of engineering to the beef. Now whether that's before or after it's slaughtered (or both) I do not know. Plus there are different grades of beef and as Michael Hoffman pointed out differnt cuts that can be ground into hamburger. So as far as I can tell, the only similarity between McDOnald's and the "upscale" places is that they are both beef. But that would be like saying that there's no difference between a meal at a Ponderosa and the Hereford House in Kansas City because they both serve steak.
           
          #5
            UncleVic

            • Total Posts: 6025
            • Joined: 10/14/2003
            • Location: West Palm Beach, FL
            • Roadfood Insider
            RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 1:19 PM (permalink)
            Here's a fine example of seasoning. (Look at the caption under the top right picture).

            http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Overview.aspx?RefID=1251
             
            #6
              hawkeyejohn

              • Total Posts: 257
              • Joined: 5/6/2003
              • Location: Joliet, IL
              RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 1:34 PM (permalink)
              A moment of silence for the passing of Pennypincher's taste buds.
               
              #7
                UncleVic

                • Total Posts: 6025
                • Joined: 10/14/2003
                • Location: West Palm Beach, FL
                • Roadfood Insider
                RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 2:11 PM (permalink)
                Now that the moment of silence has passed...

                Have that tounge examined!

                 
                #8
                  Grampy

                  • Total Posts: 1559
                  • Joined: 10/14/2002
                  • Location: Greenfield, MA
                  RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 3:10 PM (permalink)
                  Yes, talk about a tongue depresser!
                   
                  #9
                    UncleVic

                    • Total Posts: 6025
                    • Joined: 10/14/2003
                    • Location: West Palm Beach, FL
                    • Roadfood Insider
                    RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 4:27 PM (permalink)
                    quote:
                    Originally posted by Grampy

                    Yes, talk about a tongue depresser!


                    Now that was tasteless...
                     
                    #10
                      Sundancer7

                      RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 5:12 PM (permalink)
                      Is McDonalds more a sandwich or a burger?

                      The reason I ask is McDonalds Cheeseburger is a fairly tasty sandwich, but bears no resemblance to what I describe as a cheeseburger.

                      My own opinion, McDonalds Cheeseburger is a unique sandwich.

                      Paul E. Smith
                      Knoxville, TN
                       
                      #11
                        EliseT

                        • Total Posts: 2849
                        • Joined: 7/11/2001
                        • Location: L.A, CA
                        RE: Hamburgers Fri, 12/19/03 9:15 PM (permalink)
                        quote:
                        Originally posted by UncleVic

                        quote:
                        Originally posted by Grampy

                        Yes, talk about a tongue depresser!


                        Now that was tasteless...



                        Now, now, I thought you guys were "buds"!
                         
                        #12
                          harriet1954

                          • Total Posts: 1084
                          • Joined: 3/29/2003
                          • Location: Edgewater Park, NJ
                          RE: Hamburgers Sat, 12/20/03 1:12 PM (permalink)
                          OK in all fairness...pennypincher: Do you smoke? Do you travel to other places? Do you make your own hamburgers or do any of your loved ones? Have you thought about literally taking home a McDonald's hamburger and even taking home with it a Burger King hamburger (and honestly, even those two taste different from one another, I think!), preparing or having someone in your family prepare a home-cooked hamburger, and doing a real taste test with all?
                           
                          #13
                            berndog

                            • Total Posts: 674
                            • Joined: 4/8/2003
                            • Location: Rochester, NY
                            RE: Hamburgers Sat, 12/20/03 2:50 PM (permalink)
                            Like the old gal once said in the Wendy's commercial

                            "Show me the beef !!!"

                            It's just not the same hamburger meat. Different cuts and quality of meat with more or less fat and filler, different cooking techniques, etc. And I'm sure many of the road food type places we all love have their own way of seasoning, even if it's just a little shake of salt and pepper before cooking. Hey,we all know that two chefs can take the same steak, and one may run it while the other makes a mouth watering meal. Same thing with the simple slab of ground beef.
                             
                            #14
                              Theedge

                              • Total Posts: 1196
                              • Joined: 11/16/2003
                              RE: Hamburgers Sat, 12/20/03 5:25 PM (permalink)
                              Wow, there is a huge difference in burgers. I have to agree with Sundancer, I enjoy a McDonalds on occasion, but it is a different sort of "event". It's like eating at Godfathers pizza one night, and a mom and pop greek owned joint the next, two completely different experiences. You can't get much better than a burger grilled over charcoal and wood chips,,hot hot heat and use good grade of beef.
                               
                              #15
                                2005Equinox

                                • Total Posts: 219
                                • Joined: 10/27/2003
                                • Location: Kaukauna, WI
                                RE: Hamburgers Wed, 01/7/04 2:44 PM (permalink)
                                How can someone say there isnt any difference between burgers. There is a BIG difference between say McDonalds(I only go there in a pinch) And Culvers(I Love that place). Its all in the kind of beef they use and how it is seasoned. And if the beef has fillers or not. I swear McDonalds is more grease than beef sometimes.
                                 
                                #16
                                  Lone Star

                                  • Total Posts: 1730
                                  • Joined: 5/22/2003
                                  • Location: Houston, TX
                                  RE: Hamburgers Wed, 01/7/04 2:48 PM (permalink)
                                  If there are no seasonings to the meat, I would think that the difference would be the quality or cut of the meat, whether it was hand formed/packed vs. uniformly machine made, the method of cooking, and the quality of the toppings and bun.
                                   
                                  #17
                                    Lone Star

                                    • Total Posts: 1730
                                    • Joined: 5/22/2003
                                    • Location: Houston, TX
                                    RE: Hamburgers Wed, 01/7/04 2:54 PM (permalink)
                                    If there are no seasonings to the meat, I would think that the difference would be the quality or cut of the meat, whether it was hand formed/packed vs. uniformly machine made, the method of cooking, and the quality of the toppings and bun.
                                     
                                    #18
                                      Biscuit

                                      • Total Posts: 73
                                      • Joined: 6/3/2003
                                      • Location: Denver , CO
                                      RE: Hamburgers Wed, 01/7/04 3:45 PM (permalink)
                                      You can say that again!
                                       
                                      #19
                                        Tuckerduncan2002

                                        • Total Posts: 7
                                        • Joined: 11/14/2003
                                        • Location: Northport, NY
                                        RE: Hamburgers Wed, 01/7/04 4:33 PM (permalink)
                                        A good burger is HandMade. Salt and Pepper. Never pressed on the grill. That is the difference.
                                         
                                        #20
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