Thursday, August 17, 2017

Almighty Thundershizzle

I haven’t had a lamb burger so far this year in Burger Wellington. It’s time to fix this.

As I looked out of the office window, rain was coming down in huge wind-blown sheets. A typical Wellington winter day was in progress, so one of the key considerations for my burger choice today is that it must be nearby, and not involve crossing open spaces (in these conditions, umbrellas are pretty well useless). I consulted my trusty burger spreadsheet and find – yes! – Thunderbird Café are doing a lamb burger. I called them up and made a reservation.

Thunderbird Café’s offering is called the Almighty Thundershizzle. That’s a name that will take some living up to! Last time I went to Thunderbird for a burger was in 2015, and then they produced a Mothertruckin' Monster of a burger, so overstatement and exaggeration seem to be the order of the day for them. It’s described like this: Lamb and chorizo patty with chilli con queso and Anaheim chilli red pepper chow chow in a Pandoro chilli corn bun. It looked like this:

The Garage Project beer match is Trois Fleurs. This is one of the festival brews by Garage Project, and this is my first time trying it. It’s made with calendula, camomile and elderflower – the three flowers of its name. It's also a saison style beer, which isn't my usual first choice of beer. There's a reason why: I don't like it. And I wasn't a great fan of this one, so I'll bear that in mind when looking at beer matches for the rest of the festival.

As I have noted on previous occasions, the wait staff at Thunderbird aren't humanities graduates,* so when my burger arrived it was certainly uncontaminated with fries. If I'd paid more attention to the description I'd have realised this and ordered some. There was a substantial amount of what I assumed to be chili con queso, and also a ginormous slice of pickle on the top - strangely absent from the description. The waiter apologised for the lack of cutlery as she gave me a knife and pastry fork, but I told her I probably wouldn't need them. The burger squashed down to a manageable size and, although a bit on the wet side, bun integrity was good through to the last bite. The patty (I detected no chorizo in it) was cooked medium rare, and was quite substantial, but sadly lacking any good flavour. I guess the whole thing was somewhat overwhelmed by the spiciness from both the chili con queso and the chow chow - I'd have liked a bit of chargrilling caramelisation from the grill to add a bit more flavour.

This was a good burger, but it wasn't a great burger. I gave it 7.

* The engineering graduate asks: "how does it work?"
The science graduate asks: "why does it work?"
The humanities graduate asks: "do you want fries with that?"

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