B&B Junction – Winter Park, FL
Hamburgers… or “burgers” as many vulgarians call it, are by all accounts, this countries most famous, and easily our finest, export. The begetting is a little hazy with stories circulating throughout many of the major cities of the northeast, about the literal birthplace of worlds most bodacious sandwich. Many will attempt to fight you, much like Guile vs M. Bison when you bring up what characteristics make a burger “perfect”, only to come to an impasse.
The truth of the matter is that there is no such thing as the perfect anything, there are so many stellar qualities of a great hamburger, that preferences have to be culled at some point. Otherwise we would live in a dystopian society in outer space in which humans are obese to the point of losing the ability to walk. Meanwhile back on earth the survival of our planet is reliant on a cute garbage collecting robot. But I digress…
So we all know the characteristics of a great burger. But do you know the single item that will ruin even the most pristine hamburger specimen? American cheese. The contagion of all things pure and true. There are too many burger flipperias that insist on blanketing their wonderful creations with this plastic wrap painted marigold. It’s like if the de-lovely madame Marianne Cottilard had a football shaped goiter jutting out from her neck. Oh, its distinctive, but you never wish you had one yourself. I’ve heard the perfect description of what American cheese does to a burger and its counterparts. I won’t quote this but one expert said it was the glue that held everything together.
Couldn’t have found a better description if I had a book of synonyms before me. Except maybe “High gloss polyurethane deck coating.”
B&B Junction has taken over the space that once housed the great 4 rivers smokehouse. A Titan of Florida BBQ has since grazed down the road to a bigger pasture.
Their menu is designed to showcase local food purveyors and their wares, “using only the highest quality ingredients and sustainable, hormone free meats.” A quote that is religiously displayed throughout the spot.
I love that approach, as does my wife. It even persuaded her to take a blind shot at this new joint. The idea that a restaurant has the same mindset as her vaulting standards, the food doesn’t even have to taste great. But let me tell you, B&B is by far the best in Orlando bar none. Probably the most wholesome as well. Guess what? You won’t find any Kraft singles on these bodacious Brahman beef cakes.
Unfortunately, I hate being pressured to order before the time is right. Fortunately, when every single menu item would make a competent selection, you really can’t go wrong. Unfortunately, I don’t share any DNA with our bovine buddies, as I lack the three extra stomachs that might allow me to eat all eight of their signature burgers. Fortunately, they are reasonably priced, so making multiple visits isn’t out of the question.
My wife had a traditionalist hamburger with the basic lineup of condiments. Mustard, lettuce, tomato, house made pickles. (a union of dill and bread & butter flavor) If you call yourself a hamburger aficionado you have to respect my wife for her purity. For me, this is the best way to get the most complete understanding of how good beef makes the burger. You can almost taste the grassy iron enriched earth where the cows roamed with a sense of purpose. Speaking of my wife, she made the wisest of decisions by marrying me. She made an equally smart choice by selecting beer battered onion rings. Onion rings which had not been made better in an establishment. The only time I can say the onions had some semblance of a toothsome bite. Almost exclusively, onion rings are just hollowed smush filled circles of disappointment. They also came with an elevated blooming onion dipping sauce with a super macho man uppercut of horseradish. My order was the antithesis to my wife’s. If hers was a classic, mine paid tribute to Back to the Future 2 with a look into what normal burger toppings will be in the time of hover skateboards and crazy geometric shaped sunglasses.
The No. 8 came with sweet smokey chipotle ketchup, smashed avocado, fresh arugula, aged cheddar and a nice over easy fried egg. Man, if I had to order this nod to torta anywhere else I would swear that they’d get it all wrong. Due to the sheer amount of ingredients and flavor combinations that are tucked between this bun, this could have been a train wreck of disappointment. Usually something gets lost, and never found when you got so much going on. Amazing grace this had it all!! Oh and you can get some non traditional sides to go with your burgers if you aren’t a fry guy. I don’t know…does duck confit mac n’ chee sound like something you might like? This stuff is so rich and luxurious, if you schmear it on your forehead your tongue will beat your brains out trying to get to it (#dadjoke). You’re full already I know, but try, if not for yourself than for the children, to salvage some room sharing of one their freshly made desserts. We sampled the maple bacon pancake cupcake with cream cheese frosting. Never before had I discovered breakfast for dessert in such way. Well there was that one time I poured creme caramel over a stack of flapjacks one shameful early morning jaunt in Manhattan.
All in all I couldn’t have thought how far over expectations would be exceeded. If you don’t believe that the better the beef is for you, (meaning grass-fed and humanely sourced) the better the taste, you haven’t tried B&B junction Can wait to make my way down the list of options to see which one will razzle dazzle me next.