Don't act like you didn't know it was National Burger Day. You've had this seemingly inconsequential Thursday circled on your calendar for months, just waiting for an excuse to place as much beef, cheese, bacon and God-knows-what-else as physics will allow between a couple buns and then wait on the couch for June to arrive.
Seriously, though, it's National Burger Day. This is a thing, and it's likely that someone on Facebook already pointed this out to you with a picture of some artery-cementing monstrosity like this
. Don't get me wrong, I like burgers. Shit, I can't promise I won't eat one before I finish typing this sentence. But that said, a couple local restaurants are doing something pretty cool to help us rethink the burger.
The James Beard Foundation’s Better Burger Project
is a campaign to promote a healthier and more environmentally sustainable burger by combining meat with mushrooms.
unveiled its entry earlier this week. It’s a combination of 70 percent Wagyu beef from Thompson River Ranch and 30 percent crimini, Portobello and oyster mushrooms. It’s served on a ciabatta bun from Sante’s sister restaurant, Common Crumb, and accompanied with house-cured bacon, butter lettuce, grilled onions, morel mushrooms and more.
Manito Tap House
, the South Hill gastropub already well known for its environmentally conscious efforts
, also has a Better Burger Project offering. Manito is offering the Buffalo & Change, a creation by chef Molly Patrick that features ground buffalo mixed with king trumpet mushrooms and served with rhubarb ham and toasted almond butter on a toasted brioche bun. It’s available for $15 and can be served gluten-free on request.
“A blended burger also brings more sustainable, plant-based items to menus allowing Americans to enjoy the taste and flavor of the burgers they love, knowing it’s a healthier and more sustainable preparation,” reads a press release from the James Beard Foundation.
You can vote for your favorite Better Burger by uploading a photo of your preferred burger to Instagram and tagging it with the hashtag #betterburgerproject as well as the restaurant’s handle.
The burgers are on the menu at both restaurants through July 31.