Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Agate Alley Bistro: The First Burger.

The plan for my first burger review had been to collect as many opinions on the subject as possible, and choose a burger that would most likely blow my mind.  I had high hopes, and great expectations for the first burger; it would forever hold a place in my memory and on my palate.

With that, sometimes even the best laid plans change.

Face it folks, the reason this blog exists today is because I have a weakness.  I willingly admit it: I am a sucker for a burger... and a beer.

So, when my good friend and drinking buddy made a not-so-subtle beer drinking hand signal to me at the end of the day (close enough to the end anyway) I quickly and quietly packed my bag.

After a brief deliberation we decided on Agate Alley Bistro.

Agate Alley Bistro, is tucked away on the south side of campus on 19th and, you guessed it, Agate Alley (between Agate and Emerald).

I ordered the Agate Alley Burger (the only burger on the menu) with a slice of Cheddar and fries, and a tall-boy of PBR.  The burger comes with fries and is listed at $7.5 (not 7.50, but "7.5") with an additional dollar each for Tillamook cheddar, sautéed mushrooms, and/or bacon; the PBR is $2.25.

If you want a bacon cheeseburger at Agate Alley it's gonna cost you $9.5 bucks.

(As an aside, every Tuesday is "Taco Tuesday" at Agate Alley.  For six bucks you get two tacos and a Pacifico.  I was tempted, but I have a job to do here.)

The food came out quickly enough, and looked great.  The crinkle cut fries were hot, light, and crispy: really fantastic.

The actual burger is not visually a piece of art, but the beef flavor is where it makes its money.  The menu says it is "spice rubbed" fresh ground beef, and it is really very good.  It comes out with two slices of tomato, onions, pickles, and a heap of lettuce on an onion bun with Aioli.  Unfortunately, the patty, as good as it was, was totally dominated by the heaps of veggies.

I eventually took out about half of the salad, improving the overall flavor of the burger.  Unfortunately by then, the bottom bun had totally disintegrated, and not in a good way.  It disintegrated less like a super juicy diner burger would, and more like I had set in a puddle.  Not good.

Overall, the Agate Alley Burger gets the job done, but it is not a show-stopper.  As far as your campus area pubs go it's probably right on par with what you'd expect, if not a bit on the spendy side.  That said, if you're there on a Tuesday, I recommend the tacos.

Agate Alley Bistro
1461 E 19th Ave.
Eugene, OR 97403


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Wanted: the first burger!

Attention Citizens of Eugene/Springfield!

If you are reading this, you have found the home of the very best burger blog in all of Lane County. Our goal here is to bring you a no holds barred review of a local burger once a week. Welcome.

"But," you ask, "how can this be the best burger blog in Lane County when you have not yet reviewed even a single burger?"

I have to tell you at this point that the answer to the above query is quite simple, if not a tad disappointing: as far as I can tell this is the only burger blog in Lane County.

This is not the only burger blog in Oregon. There is at least one other, but as far as I can tell they have never heard of the second biggest city in Oregon, and have no interest in our eats. To this I say we must fight back.

We will no longer live as second class citizens here in Eugene. We will have our own burger reviews, and we will have them often (I mean.... as often as I can eat extremely decadent burgers and still maintain this girlish figure).

The time is now People of Eugene/Springfield; you have an opportunity to contribute to this noble mission. We are now taking submissions for the first burger to be consumed and then reviewed here at the EBB. Sign in, leave your comments, email, or whatever. take this opportunity to let your voice be heard.

What is your favorite Eugene/Springfield burger? Is it at one of the many well known brew pubs? Is it tucked away on some secret corner? Is it messy or classy, giant and rich or skinny and dirty, all beef or all vegan?

Sound off people of Eugene, and the yummy, yummy burger reviews will follow.


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