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Ted's

1046 Broad St., Meriden, CT - (203) 237-6660
Posted By Mike Iacoucci on 6/27/2011 1:27:00 PM
After years of hearing about Ted's by word-of-mouth as well as through various TV specials praising the place, it was time to check it out. Luckily, I just happened to be taking a trip that brought me right past Meriden, so I was determined to stop.

I started off very simple: cheeseburger with ketchup, and a side of home fries. The burger, as expected, was like no other burger I'd had before. It was steaming as it came out of the pan, and molten cheddar poured down over the burger and out of the roll.

The biggest weakness I can see is the kaiser roll used as a bun, a far cry from a NY hard roll. They use store-packaged kaiser rolls, which are very dense, and twice the size of the rectangular meat patty. Took two bites before I hit meat. After about half of the burger is eaten, the bun begins to disintegrate and the burger becomes a mess. Your best bet is to finish it with a knife and fork.

The meat itself definitely tastes much better than you would expect from a steamed burger. Being a medium-rare fan, I do not like the fact that they cook all burgers to well, but they are still very juicy. Just be sure not to let them cool too much, as the meat will become tough and chewy, as will the cheese.

The cheddar used is extremely mild, and does not possess much flavor, but seems to complement the meat very well (again, as long as both are hot). Between the steamed meat, the molten cheese, and the soggy roll, this burger needs some crispiness. A second was ordered, this time with bacon added, and the bacon makes all the difference.

The home fries were excellent! They're nothing special, typical home fries with typical home fries seasoning, but instead of cooking them to order, they are left to cook on the flat-top grill, which is seasoned to perfection from 50 years of use. The potatoes are occasionally turned to cook on all sides, and the fantastic results are well-seasoned and very nicely browned. No burger from Ted's is complete without a side of these potatoes.

Overall, Ted's steamed cheeseburger may not be the best burger I've ever eaten, but it definitely ranks among the most unique. If you happen to be in the Meriden area and can afford to take a detour to Ted's (less than half a mile off of exit 8 of I-691), be sure to do so.

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Scorecard

3 - Overall: Excellent - Worth a Detour
Overall: Excellent - Worth a Detour
Potatoes
steamed cheeseburger
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Reviewers Photos [Upload Your Photos]

What a delicious mess! I was able to eat about half of this hefty steamed cheeseburger before it completely disintegrated onto its paper plate. I ate the rest by picking and plucking at the pile of meat, bun, cheese, tomato, onion and lettuce.
"What a delicious mess! I was able to eat about half of this hefty steamed cheeseburger before it completely disintegrated onto its paper plate. I ate the rest by picking and plucking at the pile of meat, bun, cheese, tomato, onion and lettuce."
Michael Stern





These big sticks of cheddar cheese are cut and cooked until jelly-soft in the steamer.
"These big sticks of cheddar cheese are cut and cooked until jelly-soft in the steamer."
Michael Stern


A monument of vapor-cooked meat and cheese ... impossible to pick up and eat without serious drippage.
"A monument of vapor-cooked meat and cheese ... impossible to pick up and eat without serious drippage."
Michael Stern


Standard home fries, but the preparation and seasoned grill make them fantastic.
"Standard home fries, but the preparation and seasoned grill make them fantastic."
Mike Iacoucci


The little rectangular metal trays are loaded with beef for the steamer box.  They look like mini-meat loaves.
"The little rectangular metal trays are loaded with beef for the steamer box. They look like mini-meat loaves."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


Blocks of cheese are melted in the same trays as the beef.  It's a lot more cheese than you'd normally get on a burger.
"Blocks of cheese are melted in the same trays as the beef. It's a lot more cheese than you'd normally get on a burger."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


Paul Duberek tends little pans of molten cheese and sizzling meat amidst clouds of aromatic steam from his vintage cooker.
"Paul Duberek tends little pans of molten cheese and sizzling meat amidst clouds of aromatic steam from his vintage cooker."
Michael Stern


World Famous? We'd bet most people have never even heard of a steamed cheeseburger, much less eaten one.
"World Famous? We'd bet most people have never even heard of a steamed cheeseburger, much less eaten one."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


An opportunity to taste hambuger history ... although to most patrons, Ted's is just a friendly place to eat lunch.
"An opportunity to taste hambuger history ... although to most patrons, Ted's is just a friendly place to eat lunch."
Michael Stern


The juicy beef is loosely packed, and the cheddar is quite good.
"The juicy beef is loosely packed, and the cheddar is quite good."
Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle


The only thing that’s changed in many years on the exterior of Ted’s is the addition of this banner, touting their inclusion on the Travel Channel.
"The only thing that’s changed in many years on the exterior of Ted’s is the addition of this banner, touting their inclusion on the Travel Channel."
Chris & Amy Ayers


Cut in half, the perfection of Ted’s steamed cheeseburger can be easily seen, from the thick patty to the ideal kaiser roll.
"Cut in half, the perfection of Ted’s steamed cheeseburger can be easily seen, from the thick patty to the ideal kaiser roll."
Chris & Amy Ayers


This is Paul’s burger (note the cheese block clinging to the bun) with ketchup, a condiment that’s encouraged here.
"This is Paul’s burger (note the cheese block clinging to the bun) with ketchup, a condiment that’s encouraged here."
Chris & Amy Ayers



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