We all love a good burger. And with the gourmet burger taking over the foodie world, gone are the days where your burger doesn't live up to the hype. For us though, it always comes back to cheese. You can pile them high with everything you can imagine, but there's always an element of cheese in there. And for those times when you want a cheeseburger but you're feeling a little fancy, opt for blue. The sharpness, creaminess and complex flavours provide a welcome break from milder cheddar. With restaurants like Real Gourmet Burger, Gourmet Burger Kitchen and The Burger Shack, each offering up their own blue cheese take, it's hard to say no.
Shaking up a classic
Blue cheese burgers bring an indulgent twist to an American classic. Simply adding the salty slices of blue cheeses like Roquefort or Stilton to a thick patty of ground beef transforms a typical cheeseburger into a meal packed full of tangy melt-in-your-mouth goodness.
The blue cheese burger is a recent invention. Although cheese has been added to burgers almost since beef patties were tucked into rolls, it tended to be thin slices of American processed cheese or wedges of cheddar. But when restaurants like Real Gourmet Burger sought to reinvent the burger, they realised that the usual cheese choices simply weren't going to cut it. The sharp flavour of blue cheeses like gorgonzola, combined with their low melting temperature, meant that it was the perfect choice for a new kind of burger.
Burgers have been an American staple since the 1920s, and are as synonymous with that side of the Atlantic as blue jeans, muscle cars or cola.
The hamburger came about in the early 1800s in Germany, but didn't become truly popular until it was brought to America by waves of German immigrants in the early 20th century. And the hot sandwich first made it big with Louis' Lunch in New Haven, Connecticut – a restaurant which started out as a modest lunch wagon in 1895 and still serves up burgers to this day.
More than cheese
It's not just adding blue cheese that's made the burger fancy. Gourmet burger joints take time to find the right meat for their burgers – and you won't find any wafer-thin patties at The Burger Shack. An authentic blue cheese burger needs a proper, thick patty which won't get overwhelmed. The combination of the juicy and tender meat with the slowly melting piece of tangy blue cheese is what has made the burger the real deal.
Gourmet Burger Kitchen complements theirs with an onion jam for a bit of sweetness, with a Cajun relish bringing some savoury heat. Real Gourmet Burger serve up their blue cheese burger covered in Cashel Blue and combined with their blue cheese mayo, creating a strong, tangy flavour. And The Burger Shack have a different focus on unadorned perfection – with just their amazing beef patty, blue cheese, fresh lettuce and mayo to keep flavours simple and pure.
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