San Diego Burger Week 2018 (Recap) - San Diego, CA
*San Diego CityBeat is promoting a local Burger Week that started Friday May 4 and ends Saturday May 12 for 2018. The participating restaurants are offering a select burger for $6 (some even include fries) while a couple more bucks can land you fries and/or drinks. There's even a $300 giftcard pacakge for the person who eats the most burgers and hashtags #citybeatburgerweek on Instagram! Last year I created a San Diego Burger Week spreadsheet with burgers deals vs retail value but no recap. This year is the opposite, no spreadsheets but obviously, a recap! Here's everything that I ate this year:
Carnitas Snack Shack - The Westerner Burger: Smoked brisket-chuck blend / bbq onions / sharp cheddar / on toasted brioche bun. ARV $9.25 for comparable burgers
North Park always has a few good spots to choose from such as Carnitas Snack Shack (we've also visited their now closed Carmel Valley location). They do a real medium rare here. I was actually caught off guard because I wasn't used to seeing red like this. The meat was still juicy with a nice ratio of fat plus there was a slightly sweet tangy sauce. Cheese was perfectly melted and the brioche bun was so fluffy. What a delicious way to start off burger week!
Guava Beach Bar & Grill - 'Ol Smokey Burger: Burger stuffed with Gouda and Chopped Bacon. Topped with Smoked Cheddar, Fried Onion Strings and more Bacon on a Garlic Buttered Bun. With Lettuce, Tomato, Pickles, and Onion. ARV $15
I met up with some friends for dinner and drinks. Their 'Ol Smokey Burger was a simple, decent burger with a skinny piece of bacon plus melted cheese. I didn't realize at the time but apparently they forgot our crispy onion straws. We enjoyed the waffle fries with their magical seasoning, pretty much similar to Royale's tots with a touch of sweetness. The mango tango margarita made it a complete meal!
Garage Kitchen & Bar - Bob's Burger: Grass-fed Angus, caramelized onions, white cheddar & house sauce or Vegan Burger: “Beyond” meatless patty , LTO, pickles, veganaise, harissa ketchup, potato bun. ARV $15
Gaslamp had three restaurants within a block or two of each other. At Garage Kitchen, I was most curious about the Beyond Burger which is a new development in the food world. The patty's spongy texture was more meatlike than any substitute I've tried but still not quite meaty enough. My brother and his friend preferred the simple flavor of Bob's Burger but felt it wasn't worth the regular $15 price. Surprisingly our favorite item of the night were the wings (only $5 on Wednesday). These contained chinese five spice and reminded us of pho broth spices.
Whiskey Girl - Sharp "J" Burger: sharp white cheddar cheese, sauteed mushrooms, red peppers, and carmalized onions, on a bed of spinach with our secret "J" sauce. ARV $16+ for comparable burgers with fries
I've enjoyed dining at Whiskey Girl prior but felt conflicted with this Burger Week only special. First off, the patty was extremely greasy and mushy without any good char or grill. The patty flavor was odd, somehow bringing to memory that grey stuff that comes out of turkey patties during cooking. The winner was the burger toppings: spinach and sauted mushrooms plus a slight sweetness to their specialty bun.
Trailer Park After Dark - Single Wide: 1/3 pound burger, American cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickle, special sauce. ARV $10
Right off the bat, I noticed old school Duck Hunt to the right of the entrance, where I blissfully relived my childhood for a few minutes. Then it was time to chow down on the next burger. This was basically a home-style burger. The char was normal although it was slightly salty and wrapped in a very generic, hard bun. My companions said pickles tasted like store bought. This pickle hater will just take their word for it.
Working Class - Working Class Burger: Cheddar and american Cheese, Grilled onions, pickle, house sauce. ARV $9
It was a simple burger but just the way I like it, very juicy medium rare, great bread and sauce that reminds me of In N Out. Surprisingly this was one of my favorite classic burgers!
Waypoint Public - Burger: 1/3 lb., Caramelized Onions, Fried Onions, Blue Cheese, Bread & Cie Bun, Pickle Spear. ARV $14+ for comparable burgers
This burger is once again off the menu, only for burger week. I found it to be much better than my previous visit for burger week 2016. The patty was more seared, the bun toasted and some yummy caramelized onions and chunks of bleu cheese topped this burger. The patty was cooked more to a medium well so wasn't as juicy as I would have wanted. Friends thought this was way better though. I think I prefer my juicy burgers though. *shrug*
Monster Crafts Food Truck - Wake'N Bake'N Burger: 6oz signature beef patty topped with white chedder, pork belly, sunny side up egg. butter leaf lettuce. tomato , onion jam, secret sauce on a fresh baked brioche bun. ARV $13
I've saved the best for last! This truck was one exit away from my workplace and service was quick! The egg yolk dripped into my hands and was in every yummy bite. The pork belly was moist and flavorful and honestly I couldn't stop. We ordered some of their loaded fries as a side but couldn't finish them! I actually considered going back for more...
So that was my burger week experience for 2018. The full list of participating restaurants is here: http://sdcitybeat.com/burgerweek and I've attached the passport (list of participating vendors) below. I'm seriously considering going on a mini-diet after Tacotopia and Paella Wine Fest this weekend.
Have you eaten out for San Diego Burger Week this year? If not, which ones would you be interested in?