This is the list of all the restaurants in Davis, CA that have a cheeseburger on their menu. This is the competition. I’m not looking at fancy burgers with arugula and gorgonzola cheese or some sort of fancy aiola on them. Those are good burgers but I’m focusing on fundamentals for this project. I’m out to determine the best basic cheeseburger in town. If you know of a restaurant not listed here please contact me so I can add it.
If I’m going to rate the best cheeseburger in Davis I should probably come up with a consistent criteria for the burger. Food is serious business. Well, not really, it’s important business especially when friends and family are involved but as with many things in life taking it seriously is a sure way to ruin it.
I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this. Mostly while doing laps in the pool. What are the key components of a cheeseburger? How important are those components to the overall experience of a cheeseburger? What am I looking for in the components of a cheeseburger? When can I eat another cheeseburger? Can I eat more than one of them? Do I want a order of fries and a large soda to go with my cheeseburger? What? Wait! No, not those last couple of questions. I’m just hungry. Must be all the swimming…
I think I’ve broken it down to six criterion when rating these cheeseburgers:
Patty – By far the most important part of any burger the patty must be high quality beef. I don’t want any chicken, fish, or pork in these burgers! It beef should have a grade, at a minimum, of select. But, if you’re starting down here you got a long way to go. It should also be a good cut, no lips and anuses! There should be a good amount of fat, not too much spice, and the burger should be juicy. Bonus points will go for burgers that are medium to medium rare. (35 points)
Cheese – The second most important component to a cheeseburger. The cheese should be robust enough to not be overwhelmed by the meat but doesn’t clash with the meat or other toppings. I want a cheese that is going to wrap everything in the burger together. I mean this literally in a way, melting cheese should help keep the bun, patty, and toppings all sticking to each other! (25 points)
Bun – Some people think the bun is an integral component of the burger others feel that it’s just there so your hands don’t get to messy. I’m somewhere in the middle. The bun shouldn’t take anything away from the patty and toppings but it should be more than an edible napkin. I’m going to be looking for quality, fresh bread that is airy but not vapid and has a subtle flavor that complements the patty and toppings. Being able to maintain its form is also a must! (15 points)
Toppings – Lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles these should all be fresh and juicy. I don’t mind if it’s iceberg lettuce and roma tomatoes but I want them not to be dried out or wilted. Toppings add texture, variety, and sometime a little surprise to a burger. I’m looking for the very best supporting actors here. (15 points)
Condiments – Please don’t drown my cheeseburger in ketchup or mayo. Please do use mustard. Please don’t turn the bun into a condiment sponge. Relish is not a cheeseburger condiment. (10 points)
Ambiance – I’m in this to find the best cheeseburger in Davis not for the nicest restaurant. That being said it is hard to enjoy the best cheeseburger if you’re in a dingy, dirty slump and the help is treating you more like a cockroach and lest like a customer. Creating a pleasant environment and making me feel welcome will help me enjoy your burger. (bonus points)
That’s it. That’s what I’m going to be looking for. I have to admit all this cheeseburger thinking has me hungrier than when I started this post! Despite that fact I can’t tuck in just yet. I still got to list out all the places all by visiting. That list next time. Please look forward to it!
Last week I brought Cocktail of the Week to an end. If you want to browse through all of the cocktails I made over the last two years the full list is here. I also hinted in that last post about a new project I was looking forward to kicking off. Well, may I Welcome you to my new project: The Best Cheeseburger in Davis, California! I’m going to eat and rank every cheeseburger in town (and try not to gain 60 pounds.)
I’m not a food critic. I’ve never been trained as a cook. I have learned, am learning, how to cook and it is an activity I enjoy. I enjoy sharing food with friends and I’d fallen in love with this “tiny” town in Northern California. This seems like a good fit for the me and the blog, it’s a natural extension of previous projects and my own interests. Continue reading “Best Cheeseburger in Davis: The Project”