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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Central 214 - September 14, 2009

Today we ventured into the Palomar Hotel at Mockingbird and Central to try the burger at Central 214 which is led by the upcoming tv star of The Naughty Kitchen ( on Oxygen Network - Chef Blythe Beck. I had heard through the grapevine that their special burger was a Kobe beef burger with smoked gouda and fried pickles. Although this isn't a bacon cheddar burger, it's still a burger and in the quest for the ultimate burger, it needed to be tried.

We walked into Central 214 and were promptly seated by the hostess. The restaurant is open and the front part of the kitchen can be seen from the tables. Our server came to our table and went over the menu. Unfortunately Nick is not a fan of pickles so he wanted to know if the burger could be made with cheddar and bacon since it is posted on the menu on the website. The server said that the kitchen could prepare it that way but Nick decided to go with the kobe burger with smoked gouda but no pickles. I ordered my burger with pickles and cooked medium rare. Nick then also asked that his burger be cooked medium rare as well.

Once our order was placed we could hear the burgers sizzling in the kitchen. About ten minutes later, our order was brought to the table. The burgers smelled wonderful but unfortunately Nick's burger had fried pickles on top. He was able to take them off which gave me more to eat on the side. The bread and butter pickles were coated with a batter that had a hint of cayenne and were amazing. Being a pickle fan I could have eaten them all day long.

Taking a bite you were treated to a taste of fried bread and butter pickles and a juicy patty of Kobe beef. The smoked Gouda and patty was slightly overpowered by the flavor of the pickles but after taking off the pickles it allowed to flavor of the cheese and beef to blend nicely. The fried pickles were cooked perfectly and were extremely good but I think they were a little much for the burger. The french fries were thin crispy shoestring style that had been lightly salted. They had a good flavor and were nice and crispy. The bun was fluffy and held the patty nicely. A nice touch to the burger was that the bun was buttered and then placed on the grill showing off perfect hatch marks:

Overall I thought that Central 214's burger was a good high end burger but I would have preferred the fried pickles to be served on the side since the pickle flavored was overpowering in every bite. A good option would have been a choice of fried pickles or french fries. The gouda gave a smokey creamy flavor to the patty which was juicy.

Ratings (1-25):

Bun - 16, good flavor but top bun was slightly too thick and gave too much bread in every bite

Meat - 19, kobe beef was juicy and gave a decadent flavor to a traditional burger

Appearance - 18, good looking burger, pickles were perfectly cooked, buttered bun was very pretty

Taste - 19, smoked gouda and kobe were a great combination, pickles were wonderful but overpowered the flavor of the burger

Overall - 72

Bonus pics of cooking temperature of both burgers:

Central 214 on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. My burger came out nearly rare, which was fine for me, but not sure how many would have liked it that bloody. Rob's medium rare burger came out medium - medium well. Thus the difference in the pics above. He said it was still very good given the quality of the meat, but when you pay $13.50 for a burger, they oughta get it right. (Website says $9.50, but menu is $13.50.) More a problem with the cook than the meal.

    Also, we both agreed the patty itself needed some flavor-it was like it was beef and nothing else. Salt and pepper helped (first time I've salted a burger.) Cheese gave a nice smokey flavor and the burger was good overall and for something different, but I'd have been just as happy with a $7 cheddar bacon burger.