623 E Adams St.
Phoenix, AZ 85004
Before we get into my pizza trip to Phoenix, let me introduce myself.
I’m currently a barista in Alberta and finished a Bachelor of Arts last spring. I’ve been working in the food industry for the last 11 years, but only started appreciating real food when I began working in the specialty coffee industry three-and-a-half years ago. Being a part of the coffee industry has been an excellent opportunity for palate training: there are over 1,000 chemicals in roasted coffee, making for a very complex and diverse drink. No two cups of coffee or two pulls of espresso are the same; the quest for the perfect extraction lead many baristi to lose sleep, become over-caffeinated and obsessive. One major upside is that any good barista will become concerned about everything she consumes. It is through this process that I really began to care about the food I eat. By no means do I claim to be a culinary expert; I’m just a food-lover, like every other contributor on foodosophy. I care about where my food comes from and hope that the person who prepared it cares even more. I also believe that when someone focuses on one thing and decides to put everything he or she has into it, the results will come through. This is obviously true in the food industry and I intend to experience as much of that passion around the world as I possibly can.
43 Middle St
Portland, ME 04101-4213
“Duck fat – who doesnt like duck fat??”
Everyone has a weakness – and for me, it’s french fries. Cheesecake, chocolate, ice cream – some people like their sweets, I’m a deep fried potato and salt guy. So when I heard of a small shop in Portland Maine making amazing french fries, more specifically Belgian fries, I knew I had to check it out.
Duck Fat, in Portland Maine, serves fairly simple sandwich shop type fare. Soups, sandwiches, salads, some diner type food, and some of the most amazing frites you’ll ever taste. It is a fairly humble establishment that uses some very fine, fresh, local ingredients. While it is simple fare, there’s nothing ordinary about it.
The interior is modest, with a small amount of seating. Most spaces are counter spaces that ring the exterior walls.
Lobby of Le Parker Meridien
118 W 57th St
New York, NY
I recently went on a quest to find the best burger in New York City. For the next week, you’ll have my breakdown of what I discovered. This is post #2 of 5 related to trying out some of the best that New York has to offer. The first review, Danny Meyer’s Shake Shack, is available here. Hope you enjoy the series.
There’s something about secrets that appeal to people. It’s nice “being in the know”. Having access to an experience others don’t. They are out there too. Secret restaurants, like Totoraku in LA, or many other secret supper clubs dotted around each metropolitan city, guarded tightly like the crown jewels of the foodie community.
Hidden in the corner of the lobby of Le Parker Meridien is a secret – not through lack of information, but by obscurity of location. The Burger Joint. Hidden behind floor to ceiling curtains is a small burger operation that is the complete oppose of the Meridien Hotel vibe. Dirty, small, with a great buzz.
Marked by a simple neon burger, these days it’s easy to find by the lineup.
Once you round the corner, you find a bustling community of people drinking draught beer (Sam Adams) and chowing down on burgers and fries. Tables are sticky and dirty, bussing your own tables usually ends up that way, and tables are had on a first come first serve basis. You better be aggressive – camp someone who looks like they are leaving, or be willing to push your way through when you see someone getting up. Being polite means you end up standing there for 30 minutes, holding your rapidly cooling burger, looking despondent.