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Mar 29, 2007 06:58 PM

A Day in the Life of a CH

Lunch: chicken souvlaki at Tony Dragonas cart on 62nd and Mad. Best tsatziki sauce in the universe.
Dinner:Ichimura omakase. Very good variety, service, authentic, traditional, maybe top 10 contender,nice atmosphere, all Japanese patrons (except me)
Dessert: Burger Joint at Parker Meridian. Cheeseburger and a chocolate shake. Still number 2 to Corner Bistro. Why would anybody go to the Shake Shack over this place is an eternal wonder to me.

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  1. well i must try the souvlaki from tony dragonas's cart. i love tzatziki sauce.
    still dreaming of the flavors from my trip to patmos over 10 yrs ago.

    i am planning to try shake shack b/c i'm curious. passed it on the bus twice this week but it was closed by then. i am a HUGE fan of burger joint, even those brownies are great.
    what's the deal with the burger joint on the east side? it can't be the same place, right?

    7 Replies
    1. re: nativeNYer

      The one uptown in the Le Parker Meridian doesn't actually have an official name. It just got dubbed "the burger joint" (no initial caps). The other spot's official name is Burger Joint. It's downtown on 3rd Av., b/t 19th & 20th

      1. re: RGR

        Thanks for the clarification. So how does 'the burger joint' compare to Burger Joint in terms of burgers, fries, etc - the whole deal.

        1. re: nativeNYer

          I've never been to either, but what I do know is that the burger joint gets uniformly positive reviews while I don't recall reading anything on this board about Burger Joint. In fact, even if someone mistakenly uses initial caps when discussing the spot in the hotel, everyone can tell by the usual rave that it's that one.

          1. re: RGR

            Actually, "the burger joint" (lower case) is the spot on 3rd ave and 20th street. It actually closed and is moving to another spot, I think across the 3rd ave and closer to 19th street. They serve pretty decent slider size burgers. When you order, they take a meatball shaped ball of ground beef and press it onto a griddle. The burgers get nice and crusty and served on Martin's potato rolls they also top them with grilled onions. Never tried the fries there but they look like generic frozen shoestring fries. Very satisfying but certainly not in the running for best burger. About $1.50 per slider.

            The Burger Joint in the Parker Meridien is closer in style to a Shake Shack burger. I'd say its fairly even with Shake Shack as far as taste is concerned. Personally, I like Shake Shack slightly better but because I refuse to wait on an hour long line, I haven't eaten at there much this year.

            1. re: ESNY

              "I like Shake Shack slightly better but because I refuse to wait on an hour long line, I haven't eaten at there much this year."

              the line at burger joint is about an hour long every weekday at lunch (and almost as long at dinner) with midtown office workers and tourists looking for a cheap meal (burger joint is written up in many NYC guide books for good midtown cheap eats)

              generaly speaking, I would much prefer to wait in a beautiful park than a cramped hallway....

              1. re: Cpalms

                The line at burger joint might be an hour long at lunch time, but I've walked in and placed my order right away more than once between 1:30pm and 3pm.

                No matter what time I walk past Shake Shack...including after 8pm...I've never seen a line with a wait of less than ten to 20 minutes.


                1. re: TipsyMcStagger

                  When we go Shake Shack on the weekend at 11am, almost never a line or not more than a minute or two, FWIW.

    2. Because it's outside in a great park on 23rd st. instead of being on 57th st. But I like Burger joints burger better I think.

      1. howdy guttergourmet,

        "Why would anybody go to the Shake Shack over this place is an eternal wonder to me."

        well, it's really not one place over the other. shake shack works for me on several fronts: good burgers, good beer and madison square park. something about spring, sun in the face, doggies wandering around. it's all good.

        1 Reply
        1. re: steve h.

          Challah french toast at Odessa,
          Lunch Mamoun's Falafel
          Dinner my house
          dessert Veniero's

        2. 11-hour food walk yesterday with a crew of die-hard friends, starting at noon!

          1. 2 hours of drinking stouts at Stout NYC (Herald Square).

          2. Fro-yo at Pinkberry (K-Town).

          3. Molten chocolate-filled black sesame dumplings at Rickshaw Dumpling House (Chelsea).

          4. Sandwiches at 'Wichcraft (East Village).

          5. Cream puffs at Beard Papa (East Village).

          6. Beer and sausages at Zum Schneider (Alphabet City).

          7. Australian Meat Pies at Tuck Shop (NoHo).

          8. (Stopped by Doughnut Plant on the LES but it was closed! D'oh ...)

          9. Banh Mi sandwiches at Saigon Bakery (Chinatown).

          10. Gelato at Ciao Bella (SoHo).

          11. A beautiful bottle of sangiovese at 'inoteca (LES).

          12. Finally, tapas at 1492 (LES).

          I'm still recovering today!

          8 Replies
          1. re: Kanger

            Except for the Pinkberry, which now appears to be a cancer in our city, I love that list-usually takes me 2 days to cover it-i'm very impressed.

            1. re: guttergourmet

              thanks! we just followed it up a few weeks ago with our fourth tour:

              1. Beers @ DBA

              2. Dumplings @ Fried Dumpling

              3. Banh mi @ Vietnam Banh Mi So

              4. Doughnuts @ Doughnut Plant

              5. Frites and beer @ Schiller's

              6. Hot dogs @ Dash Dogs

              7. Cupcakes @ Sugar Sweet Sunshine

              8. Truffled egg toast @ 'inoteca

              9. Scones (we wanted pain au chocolat, but went too late) @ Balthazar Bakery

              10. Churros and hot chocolate @ Despana

              11. Vodka martinis @ Pravda

              12. Crepes @ the Creperie

              13. Pastrami reubens @ matzo ball soup @ Katz's

              needless to say, I passed out soon after. whew.

              1. re: Kanger

                Again sounds like my typical weekend day-last Saturday for example I started with spicy pork jerky at Ling Kee, followed by churros (how are the churros y chocolate at Despana?) and blackout donut at Donut Plant, followed by a bialy from Kossar's, then onion cheeseburger slyders and fries at Shopsin's followed by a wedge of fosterkase from Formaggio Essex, then on to every conceivable part of the chicken's anatomy yakitori at Totto's with mucho sake and beer, two slices of Joe's Pizza and a warm chocloate bread pudding with creme anglaise from the Dessert Truck before calling it a day. By the way, I like the chili, onion, jalapeno dogs at Dash. What kind did you have? Also, Patisserie Claude's pain au chocolat are vastly superior to Balthazar's. I have written poetry about Ino's truffled egg toast. Saigon Bakery's banh mi is better than Vietnam's. Try the Welsh rarebit next time at Schilller's. Prefer Eldridge Dumpling House dumplings over Fried Dumpling and I'm a Magnolia cupcake man but haven't compared to Sugar Sweet.

                1. re: guttergourmet

                  Hey, guttergourmet,

                  You say this listing is what you ate last Saturday? How exactly did you manage to have a bialy at Kossar's since they are closed on Saturdays?

                  1. re: RGR

                    You know you're right. Shopsin's, Fromage, Totto's and the Dessert Truck were Saturday afternoon and night and jerky, churros, donuts, bialy were Sunday morning. Essex Market is closed Sundays. But it was all consumed within 24 hours. Does that count?

                    1. re: guttergourmet

                      Your original title says "A *Day* in the Life of...," which can certainly be construed as 24 hours. So, yes, it can count. lol

                  2. re: guttergourmet

                    I haven't had the churros at Doughnut Plant, but they were mighty tasty at Despana. I'd say give them a shot!

                    I like chili and fritos on my Dash Dogs.

                    Re Saigon Bakery vs. Vietnam and Dumpling House vs. Fried Dumpling, I wholeheartedly agree with you--unfortunately, we had already been to the latter in each case on previous food tours, so we couldn't repeat them!

                    Ditto on Magnolia as well, but since we were right by Schiller's and Dash Dogs, Sugar Sweet Sunshine was the easier choice.

                  3. re: Kanger

                    Kanger, this sounds right up my alley. Thanks for posting!

              2. Well first I'm pretty sure you need a visa to go above 23rd Street these days - and why on earth would anyone really want to wait inside a velvet curtain in luxury hotel for just another burger? And I'm with the growing majority who thinks Corner has seen better days - try the Tavern on Jane for a burger that puts CB to shame. Anyway back to the topic - like good sex and Paris, Shake Shack rules - for the burger, the ambiance and the experience. It's simply one-of-a-kind.