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The Slider Phenomenon

Can someone explain this to me? You want a burger, but can't possibly eat 6-8oz of meat, a huge bun and then all the fries. So you get three little burgers that are between 6-8oz total and three little buns which is probably more bread than a regular bun. Why? Plus, it's almost impossible to find a place that will cook them medium rare. And to top it off most places charge a buck more for the sliders. I will never get this, unless they are being shared!

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  1. They are a perfect bite of hamburger. The regular burger and bun have different taste and consistancy as you work your way from the center towards the middle. In a slider you get exact portions of bread ends, bacon and cheese in each bite.

    1. It's the same BS as the cupcake craze. I have friends who go all nuts over eating a cupcake but not a slice of regular cake.
      ITA that it is dumb.

      4 Replies
        1. re: sparkareno

          I agree! Cake is so much better than cupcakes.

          1. re: sparkareno

            I might have agreed with you until I went to a couple of places with truly great cupcakes. It's easier to eat a cupcake than a slice of cake (no plate or fork needed), and I do believe its structural integrity can lead to better taste. If it's very well made, the inside is so moist and buttery that a slice of similar cake might fall apart.

            I think you just haven't had a great one.

            1. re: sparkareno

              I am just as excited about a cupcake as I am sliced cake. However, in defense of cupcakes, I like that I can go to a bakery and get several different kinds of cupcakes for about the same price/amount of one slice of cake. And I can eat them with my hands. So I get to try more flavors in one sitting.
              This to me would also be the potential appeal of sliders/mini burgers. Sometimes restaurants will serve 3, each with different toppings/meats. Then you get to try more than one burger without having to order several burgers. If they're all the same then I'm not interested.

            2. Yes--I've yet to have a great slider because they're too small to cook properly. Too much bun to meat ratio, too.

              1. And on top of that , now you are supposed to serve them at parties as the great cocktail snack.

                I just saw a big spread in a local magazine touting the latest holiday 'fun' idea for a party appetizer. Brie and Angus Beef Sliders, on a Parmesan Mini-Bun with Balsamic and Onion Jam. The accompanying recipe had 22 ingredients!!! What could you possibly serve for dinner after that performance?

                Pass me the celery stick with cream cheese, please...

                1 Reply
                1. re: LJS

                  I'll take mine with peanut butter, thank you very much...

                2. jhopp, I think your generation gap is showing. All my students want a White Castle slider because of the film Harold and Jumar Go to White Castle.

                  19 Replies
                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                    See? jfood will argue til the cows come home that WC is the ONLY true slider/slyder. I include Krystal. The rest are wannabes.

                    1. re: c oliver

                      I'll have to agree with Jfood on that one...but what I don't understand is now people want to say that everything besides a burger that's served on a small bun is also a slider...pulled pork slider, fish slider, turkey slider...the term is applied to a burger people, not just any sandwich! I had to get that off my chest; thank you and goodnight!

                      1. re: c oliver

                        J & I grew up not far apart. I used to stop by WC w/ my kids, after the 10 hr. drive from Maine, before getting to my mom's house, so we wouldn't starve waiting for her get ready to go out to eat.

                        1. re: c oliver


                          White Caste serves sliders/slyders. the rest are mini burgers.

                          Now let's take the ridiculous to the stupid.....

                          - take any protien, form a mini patty and cook it. place on a bun and call it a tuna slider, a turkey slider, a thai slider, etc.

                          They are NOT, repeat NOT, sliders.

                          Soap box over.

                          Oh yeah, do not get me started on Thai Pizza or toffu-dogs.

                            1. re: Passadumkeg

                              left out on purpose to see which of you guys grab the baton and ran with it. :-))

                              Passa receives 1 point.

                              1. re: jfood

                                No such thing as a soft shell crab slider!

                                1. re: Passadumkeg


                                  That my dear man is called a soft shell crab sandwich.

                                  1. re: jfood

                                    You betcha and on corn rye and a slice of Jersey tomato.

                                    1. re: Passadumkeg

                                      not sure it i should add the tartar sauce. and i would swap a nice brioche for the corn rye. duck!!

                                      1. re: jfood

                                        Hey, I'll even take soft shell crab on a Hamilton Twp. bagel!

                                2. re: jfood

                                  Aw, man, no fair. He's FROM there. I'm a demure Southern Belle who's had to be educated by the bigboys about the finer things in life.

                                  1. re: c oliver

                                    Be grateful you did not get a demerit for comparing Krystal to WC. :-))

                                    1. re: jfood

                                      I was in my 30s before having WC; only K in my formative years. But I think I redeemed myself by going quite out of the way to go to Queens JUST for WC. Two each in the car. Perfect midmorning snack.

                                      1. re: c oliver

                                        Sorry CO, but you have not been redeemed. There is a WC right near the Empire State Building. To take the 7 train to Queens and not eat ethnic, is a sin. :0]

                                        1. re: Passadumkeg

                                          EXCEPT, we started out from City Island in the Bronx and then had lunch in Flushing (one of our absolute favorite places to eat). But I did NOT know there are WC in Manhattan. Thanks, buddy.

                                          1. re: c oliver

                                            Flushing is in the Queens; at the end of the 7 train line.

                                            1. re: Passadumkeg

                                              Yes, I know that, P-keg. But we were driving from the Bronx to Queens. Other (non-WC) times, we take the 7.

                          1. re: Passadumkeg

                            HAHAHA! White Castle isn't the same thing. I don't even know what a White Castle burger is, because depsite them being wonderful they don't even taste like beef.

                            1. Silly me. I thought the whole "Slider Phenomenon" was over.

                                1. A good slider is ambrosia
                                  of bunned-beef euphoria.
                                  Distinct from "Big Burgers"
                                  in several ways.

                                  (I'm referring to original White Castles here),

                                  First, there's the squeeze of soft bun steamed in chorus
                                  to the soft-meated pattie upon which we'll soon feed.
                                  We fondle that mound of white wheat, and beef,
                                  Ground to consistency that needs not our teeth.

                                  We mind not that they're glazed
                                  with a soft-frosted haze
                                  of what can be only called grease.

                                  There are those obese folks, called "Sackers"
                                  who assault the White Castle
                                  with a mind to slam down with alacrity
                                  a full steaming dozen from full-crammed greasy sack.

                                  (All power to them, as they park and they snarf
                                  not sure that a dozen are just quite enough.
                                  Why waste the gas, transporting their ass,
                                  when they'll just wheel around to the drive-thru again?)

                                  I, myself, not a "Sacker", am more of a quizzative "Fondler"
                                  approaching each slider as a prized piece of art.
                                  appraising the merit, sniffing, reviewing,
                                  this wonderful fingerful that will soon meet my gullet.

                                  It's not just the soft and the see'ductive texture,
                                  but also the aroma, of rehydrated dried onions,
                                  soft-steamed by the gifted quick-wristed grillmaster.

                                  I hold it up high, to get the best light,
                                  on greased haze that glistens before me.

                                  Then, slowly, one at a time,
                                  I blissfully dine
                                  of this supple soft suckle before me.

                                  All lovers of softness of white bread, beef, and onions
                                  should trudge to the castle and join in the chorus
                                  of praise, as did Harold and Kumar.

                                  I'm remiss here, have forgotten, to add the delight
                                  of tantalizing tickle that comes
                                  from that one slice of dill pickle
                                  they place in the middle
                                  and the smear of the mustard quite light.

                                  5 Replies
                                  1. re: FoodFuser

                                    For the first time in probably 20 years, I am actually thinking about going to White Castle. Nice work.

                                    With that kinda love for WC, I'd love to see what you thought of a White Rose. My treat should you ever lose a bet and have to spend time in central NJ.

                                    1. re: MGZ

                                      As an Okie, I've got absolutely
                                      no knows of what beauties might flow from White Rose.

                                      For now, it's White Castle
                                      as the source of the Slider.

                                      But thanks for the offer
                                      of what White Rose might proffer.

                                      For now, I'm content
                                      to savor the glint
                                      and the glistens, tastes, smells, of what nose knows.

                                        1. re: Passadumkeg

                                          Thanks for the link.
                                          It helps me re-think.

                                          But upon cogitation,
                                          I'd say that the bun, though lovingly prepared,
                                          is better to "Big Burger" than diminutive slider.

                                          The secret of a slider from WC
                                          is their absolute lack of all texture.

                                          They are formed to give glide
                                          in smooth toothless slide.

                                          (Is that maybe etymology of "Sliders"?)

                                          Buns of WC
                                          are browned, but are crustless
                                          So, in concert with patties just steamed but un-browned
                                          They go down the gullet in one single motion.

                                          My assessment's not fair, since not tried WR
                                          but for now I'll stick with the standard WC.

                                          But "White Rose" has a wonderful marketing name.
                                          Petals, inviting, versus WC's parapets,
                                          We'll storm at the Castle,
                                          but not trample the Rose.

                                          Now it's off to the freezer for some good home-dried onions
                                          and the clatter of bringing the skillet to fore.
                                          SO has already made way to the store
                                          for fresh beef, and a pack of potato buns,

                                          One always gives joy of a slider night.

                                          1. re: FoodFuser

                                            Yes, I used to keep a print out of Holly Eats in the glove box when traveling to pick up the boys from colleges and on the Manie-NJ-Maine haul when the folks were alive.
                                            Now I'm on the green chile cheeseburger trail.

                                  2. No White Castle around here. I'd never heard of sliders until they started showing up on happy hour menus, along with small tacos, bahn mi, fried oysters and other snacks. I can't recall seeing "hamburger" type sliders, they're usually pork or brisket or, yes, some kind of seafood. As with the tacos, they often come three to an order and are meant for sharing. Tasty enough. What's the big deal?

                                    39 Replies
                                    1. re: Glencora

                                      YOU should be able to find frozen White Castle at Safeway et al. They MW pretty well. Add yellow mustard. And THEN you will have an approximation of a slider :)

                                      1. re: c oliver

                                        For what it's worth, frozen is just not the same; don't get me wrong, I've had to resort to frozen as I now live in NC and there are no White Castle restos here so when a craving hits, I have no choice BUT as someone who grew up on them in Queens (Hollis Ave & Ozone Park locations) they are but a mere tease....excuse me while I wipe the corner of my mouth (lol)

                                        1. re: Cherylptw

                                          No, it's not the same. But when the urge comes upon you, try my technique. Remove from wrapper and wrap two in paper towel. MW 30 seconds, unwrap, separate and rotate sliders 180 degrees and turn over, rewrap and MW another 30 seconds. Add yellow mustard and MW 10 more seconds. It ain't love but it ain't bad :)

                                          1. re: c oliver

                                            I've tried the frozen but no no no to the yellow mustard...sorry, but original white castle sliders only had a dab of ketchup and a pickle, no mustard..that's just wrong...

                                            1. re: Cherylptw

                                              yeah, what's with the mustard? They don't have mustard on them at WC

                                            2. re: c oliver

                                              It took a while for this thread to rightfully get to the point (strange detour, all about cupcakes????)- SLIDERS = WHITE CASTLE. The original post said, "I will never get this," and they never will if they did not grow up on White Castles. Little hamburgers are not the Phenomenon. The White Castle culture, the nostalgia of trips to your favorite WC place. The onions, the grease. In some city locations, its OK if some shady characters are hanging around the edges of the parking lot because a cop will be in any minute for a cup of coffee. The ladies with hair nets, with thier various city accents.
                                              So I am jumping in here to reply to c oliver to say I have eaten about 3- 4 frozen White Castle sliders in my life. I consider myself a White Castle fanatic, but like Cherylptw in North Carolina with no White Castle nearby, I am a refuge from the New York suburbs now in Florida, No matter how many times I could wrap or unwrap a slider in the microwave, it's just is not the same. Not tempted to go there. But on trips to Ohio, New York, and Detroit, I will go miles and miles out of my way to find real White Castles. I got bit by a dog a few years ago in Detroit, and had great medical care in one of their hospitals. My wife's relatives all came by, and they got the word to bring a few WCs ! When I fly into LaGuardia Airport in Queens, NY, I rent a car and get out my map of the White Castle locations nearest to the airport. And a few days later, on the way back to the rental car return, I pick up some sliders for the car rental staff. They never turn 'em down!
                                              Frozen WCs? Fuggetaboutit!

                                              1. re: Florida Hound

                                                One doesn't have to grow up with a food to understand it or appreciate it.

                                                One simply needs to come to the understanding, and perhaps even the appreciation, that people are different.

                                                In matters of taste I would think this is extremely obvious. But I suppose it is not.

                                                1. re: tommy

                                                  I think one needs to listen to the folk the grew up w/ that food. Food is cultural and learned.
                                                  Not send me some Taylor Pork Roll!

                                                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                    Taylor pork roll? Funny. Never had it, but mom & dad swore it's a beach favorite (NJ beach).

                                                    I'm more of a scrapple aficianado myself (and yes, I know that is also a food I grew up with.)

                                                    1. re: gaffk

                                                      Grew up w/ 'em both.
                                                      Rt 77, The Atlantic City Expressway?
                                                      Salt Water Taffy

                                                      1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                        Are you sure you're not from Philly?

                                                        1. re: gaffk

                                                          Carpenter St, Germantown?
                                                          77th & Ogantz, Cheltenham?
                                                          Strawberry Mansion, Chestnut Hill?
                                                          German Friends School?
                                                          Episcopal Academy?

                                                            1. re: gaffk

                                                              No, I've never lived in Philly, closest was Allentown, email me

                                                      2. re: gaffk

                                                        Scrapple - there is no food in nature that is grey! HAHA! My father is from Philly and grew up on scrapple. Every time we went to my grandmothers, he would by that, sticky buns and Lebanon bologna. I liked two of the three!

                                                        1. re: jhopp217

                                                          Funny, you don't say which two.

                                                          1. re: gaffk

                                                            I love sticky buns and despite the fact that nobody wants to be near you after, the smokey goodness of Lebanon Bologna can't be beat. To be honest it's been about 25 years since I've tried it and I like a lot of things I didn't back then, so I'll have to give it another chance.

                                                            1. re: jhopp217

                                                              I miss ring baloney!
                                                              Hot bacon dressing.

                                                        2. re: gaffk

                                                          You did not need to go to the beach for either taylor ham or WC's.

                                                          i am an X13 NJT person and there ain;t no beach at exit 13.

                                                          1. re: jfood

                                                            I love how NJ people ID themselves by exit. As a Philly girl it tells me nuthin'.

                                                            And yet, despite the proximity, never had Taylor's or WC.

                                                            1. re: gaffk

                                                              here you go kiddo.


                                                              WC is NOT a NJ experience. Salt Water Taffy, Taylor Ham, Sloppy Joe, deep fried Italian dogs are.

                                                              1. re: jfood

                                                                Thanks jfood. I guess I need to mark this as a favorite so I can better communicate with my joisey colleagues.

                                                                1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                  There's something about those New Jersey turnpikes
                                                                  that's akin the existential dilemma of Paul Sartre.
                                                                  He drove and he drove, in search of a Slider
                                                                  but finally decided there was really No Exit.

                                                                  1. re: FoodFuser

                                                                    In the "hell is other people" vein, NJ, as the most densly populated state, adds a whole other level to your rhyme.

                                                                    1. re: MGZ

                                                                      No, it is a matter of bad urban planning and design. Many very pleasant whole countries are more densely populated than NJ.

                                                                    2. re: FoodFuser

                                                                      Now that one truly had me laughing out loud . . .thanks Fuser!

                                                                      1. re: FoodFuser

                                                                        Hey Oakie, can ya still just get 3.2 beer off the Will Rodgers Turnpike????

                                                                        1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                          It is so. Real beer only sold in state-regulated Liquor stores, and then, only sold warm.

                                                                          1. re: FoodFuser

                                                                            Makes Jersey look civilized, almost.

                                                                      2. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                        Typical central NJ mistake...it is


                                                                        Happy Bird-day

                                                                        1. re: jfood

                                                                          Been gone so long.......Sayreville is an entity unto itself.

                                                                          Ever hear of a roast turkey stuffed w/ Sliders?

                                                                          Happy thanksgiving.

                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                              Wasn't this huge a few years ago? Among novelty cooks, I mean.

                                                                              I'm from NJ and had WC sliders growing up. I found them both repulsive and alluring.

                                                                              1. re: guilty

                                                                                I don't know. I grew up on Krystal as did our new SIL. I sent him this recipe cause he's determined that WC's are inferior. I don't and I'm his senior and I keep expecting him to be respectful :)

                                                                          1. re: jfood

                                                                            or bullwinkle's alma mater - whatsamatta u

                                                                          2. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                            I'm from Philly--NJ is just that land you travel through to reach the beach. (And, long ago, to buy cheap liquor underage ;)

                                                                2. re: Florida Hound

                                                                  As fellow compatriot
                                                                  of said gleaming parapets
                                                                  and the pulse of the
                                                                  onion-steamed sliders inside

                                                                  I've not tried them frozen
                                                                  but jammed down many dozens
                                                                  fresh from the Grilllmaster.
                                                                  Sliders gived Glide.

                                                                  1. re: Florida Hound

                                                                    I can't say I grew up on any fast food, because my parents treated anything like that as a treat, If anything, I'd say I grew up on Burger King, but I've had quite a few late night runs to White Castle and even more stops to the local 7-11 to get a frozen sack of them. While I agree the frozen doesn't compare to the fresh, it's still pretty close. Yes they are not a phenomenon, but restaurants that serve burgers selling them is. That was my point.

                                                          2. For me anyway, a slider is in fact different from a regular burger.

                                                            It's not just the size. A proper slider, aside from being smaller than a burger, is made with a thin beef patty, seared first on a griddle with onions, and finished by covering it and steaming the beef and onions together to create one unique flavor profile. Cheese optional and pickles optional.

                                                            It's like that age old question, "what's the difference between a dumpling (jaozi) and a xiao long bao?" The trite answer might be something like, "I know it when I see it".

                                                            6 Replies
                                                            1. re: ipsedixit

                                                              Are you referring to The Supreme Court on food porn?

                                                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                Bing Bing Bing...Ipse gets 3 points. TY TY TY

                                                                1. re: jfood

                                                                  I think people who think there is no difference between a slider and a burger have never really had a real slider (or slyder). They've only had small burgers.

                                                                  Not their fault, just a lack of exposure.

                                                                2. re: ipsedixit

                                                                  Adding to ipsedixit's rendition of soft burgers that require no dentition:

                                                                  Their little beef patties
                                                                  are punctured symmetrically
                                                                  with five equally spaced holes.

                                                                  These vents well facilitate
                                                                  the transfer of steam bubbling
                                                                  to the expertly top-placed bun.

                                                                  And one other difference
                                                                  is the strength of the grind,
                                                                  pulverizing the beef
                                                                  to a texture quite fine.

                                                                  (Copycat recipes use the food processor
                                                                  to get to that texture,
                                                                  and add chicken liver
                                                                  to boost up the flavor.
                                                                  The meat is rolled and pressed in a sheet, cut to squares,
                                                                  then holes punched with a drinking straw pilfered from McD's).

                                                                  As to buns:
                                                                  they're so soft, and well yeasted
                                                                  in their softly browned loft
                                                                  there must be some smashed tater's in there.

                                                                  These softly steamed treasures
                                                                  of meat and of buns
                                                                  are a giftt Callipygean.

                                                                  1. re: FoodFuser


                                                                    I think you are way too talented for these boards.

                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                      CH,. like time, is but a steam I go fishing in. Email me, from profile, for more.

                                                                3. Don't you ever share your food? 3 people can share a plate of sliders and then go on to other foods.

                                                                  There's a place in DC that does good beef, swordfish, and lamb sliders (separately, that is).

                                                                  Makes for a more exciting meal.

                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                  1. re: Steve

                                                                    Do they have White Castle or Krystal in DC?????

                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                      No. We used to have Little Tavern, but they have all been converted to something else. Similar in idea.

                                                                      1. re: Steve

                                                                        there was that place on M St in the 70s right near the Key Bridge, not very good. And when we had the Tombs on 36th and Clydes just up the street, it was hard to eat anything else

                                                                  2. Just my two cents, but I think it's more because they're cute and fun to eat than anything to do with the taste. There used to be a restaurant in Seattle that was famous for it's sliders which were made with ground hanger steak and were amazing. Though the meat patties were fairly thick, so purists would probably argue that they were mini-burgers rather than sliders.
                                                                    I did notice some mini hamburger buns at the grocery store the other day. I think they were made by Sara Lee. In the past I think the closest option was to use dinner rolls if you wanted to make sliders at home.

                                                                    1. Because people like them. They can be good.

                                                                      It's interesting that some people consider sliders to be a "fad" (we have places near me serving them for over 50 years), and others don't seem to understand that there's a specific cooking method associated with a properly made slider.

                                                                      With respect to those "sliders" that are all over restaurant menus, well that's another story entirely.

                                                                      13 Replies
                                                                      1. re: tommy

                                                                        On Michael Symon's Food Feuds a battle between two slider joints open since the mid 40's; White Manna in Hackensack NJ and White Mana in Jersey City. White Manna in Hackensack was the winner....they use a 1.6 oz 10% fat meat, sliced onions and a potatoe bun. The White Mana Jersey City uses a 1 oz 20% fat meat, chopped onions and a white bread bun.
                                                                        White Manna Hackensack has also been featured on No Reservations, Best Thing I Ever Ate and Diners Drive Ins and Dives.

                                                                        1. re: monku

                                                                          There is a place that sells a 1oz slider? Isn't that a meatball that's been flattened?

                                                                          1. re: jhopp217

                                                                            There is a place that sells a 1oz slider? Isn't that a meatball that's been flattened?


                                                                            Um, yes? Typical slider uses anywhere between 1 to 1.5 oz of meat. Anything bigger and it's not really a slider anymore. The White Castle Slyders are generally 1.2 or 1.3 ounces, and that includes (what everyone suspects is) babyfood of some sort.

                                                                            1. re: jhopp217

                                                                              That's what he said. Takes a one ounce meatball swats it flat like using a fly swatter after throwing on some chopped onions.

                                                                              1. re: jhopp217

                                                                                Another data point supporting the theory that people simply do not understand what a slider really is.

                                                                                1. re: tommy

                                                                                  It seems that since there is such an overwhelming number of establishments that have sliders on the menu, your argument is with a multitude in the restaurant industry.

                                                                              2. re: monku

                                                                                White Manna puts any other sliders I've had (e.g., WC, Krystal's, Little Tavern) to shame. The cooking process is similar to WC's but they are served with a profusion of caramelized onions. I've only been to the Hackensack location, which is surely the most beautiful place I've ever eaten sliders (some Little Tavern locations in DC came close).

                                                                                1. re: Dave Feldman

                                                                                  Agreed about White Manna.

                                                                                  I fear, though, that due to this episode of Food Wars they will be even more packed than usual. My secret during peak hours is to phone in ahead and get the order 'to go' (which usually visibly confounds the people lined up outside the door to see somebody squeeze past them, get their stuff, and be on their way in 60 seconds). If you want to soak in the 'experience' and sit at the counter then it is best to try and find a time when the crowd is thin.

                                                                                  1. re: Dave Feldman

                                                                                    Double agreed, White Rose too. Local ownership always trumphs in spades!

                                                                                    1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                      Could you tell us a little about White Rose? I'm not familiar with it.

                                                                                      1. re: Dave Feldman

                                                                                        The White Rose System is in Highland Park, Nj, just acreoos the Raritan R from New Brunswick. My folks lived nearby and we usede to hit it for mid afternoon snacks.

                                                                                        1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                          The White Rose burger is a slider all growds up. It tastes better, though. Which, given the original point of this thread, seems to bring us right back home.

                                                                              3. I don't find that three sliders have more meat than a regular burger. Might be slightly more bread, but I doubt three sliders is even 5 oz of meat. I like them because they are not too big for me. I can eat two and not feel disgusting. They are usually prepared differently than a regular burger, and they are always served cooked thru - no option for medium rare on a slider. I think if you want a burger, you should get one. I hope sliders are here to stay.

                                                                                1. Again, the Dumkeg Mantra:
                                                                                  All foods are cultural.
                                                                                  What you grow up liking, you crave.
                                                                                  Many foods do not travel well, ie. BBQ, Mex., even chowdah.
                                                                                  People who don't grow up w/ it,
                                                                                  Do not understand it.
                                                                                  Et cetera, ad naseum....

                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                                                                                    Does this mean that the Slider, with aroma of onions and bunned-beef so sweet,
                                                                                    becomes nothing more than a Surrogate Teat?
                                                                                    I've no way knowing, how far in the past,
                                                                                    I gave my first chew to that succulent repast.

                                                                                    Heck, now I don't know which was the best:
                                                                                    was it Tittie, or Slider, or just being held to the Chest?
                                                                                    Whichever, I'm glad to have indulged in them all.

                                                                                    1. re: FoodFuser

                                                                                      I was bottle fed thanks to Dr. Spock,
                                                                                      But a slider is a slider
                                                                                      Of which there is no doubt.
                                                                                      Other sliders may be of Q or of lamb,
                                                                                      But a sham is still a sham.
                                                                                      Take it form a Jersey insider.

                                                                                  2. Thanks (!!!) to this thread, Bob and I shared a box of six WCs for a late lunch today. Mmmm.

                                                                                    1. The phenomenon is that White Castle is popular, serves a unique burger, and has thusly been imitated, but only the size has been replicated.

                                                                                      The White Castle burger is unique. It doesn't taste like any other burger, insofar as it's flavors derive from the sugars in the onions and bun.

                                                                                      It is also small, and has not changed its shape to accord with the disgusting tastes of American consumers. People used to order two sliders and call it a day.

                                                                                      Now, Americans are enthralled with the burger for no apparent reason, and the slider gets more attention. As it happens, sliders are cheap to imitate, because they are small. Enter, crab "sliders". Half the crab, twice the price.

                                                                                      As far as burgers go, the whole thing works (sorta) to the degree that the onion powers the flavor. It's a way to make bad ingredients taste good. It makes no sense for a restaurant with a chef that makes a good burger to offer sliders. What you will get is burnt nonsense, with a 600% markup.

                                                                                      People order them because they look cute on a plate, giving the appearance of presentation. So avoid them and don't indulge the phenomenon.

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: kevin47

                                                                                        Is it possible White Castle is still popular because of the so-called slider pheonomenon and the movie?
                                                                                        Quick Google....White Castle began in 1921, privately owned and has 422 outlets.

                                                                                        This is going back in the time.
                                                                                        I grew up on Long Island and there were a few White Castles which I didn't think they were any big deal then. In 1959 the first Wetson's opened and it was a big deal and their claim to fame was the 15 cent hamburger. Maybe the first real competition for White Castle (their hamburgers were 10 cents each). 1959 McDonald's opened their 100th store in Chicago also featuring a 15 cent hamburger. Not sure when they came to Long Island.

                                                                                        1. re: monku

                                                                                          "Is it possible White Castle is still popular because of the so-called slider pheonomenon and the movie?"

                                                                                          No. I see nothing to support this theory.

                                                                                          1. re: tommy

                                                                                            Agreed, WC is popular because they are good. We were driving by on on Route 17 last Saturday and got a 30 pack, planning to call some friends when we got home. We never made the call and ate them all by the next morning.

                                                                                      2. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/object/...

                                                                                        I have to say these do look rediculous -- and impossible to eat. I suspect that this is the kind of thing White Castle fans object to?

                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                        1. re: Glencora

                                                                                          Yup cute, but sure as hell, ain't no slider. Here's another example at County Line BBQ, in Austin. Cute and delicious, but not a slyder. What happened to the prefix "mini"? On the other hand, it was ten o'clock in the morning and it would have been indecent not to have had something to eat w/ our Live Oak Ales.

                                                                                        2. There's a psychological aspect to being served "bites" instead of large portions, and a financial incentive and well-studied marketing trends speak to this all the time. You tend to eat and order more if you perceive the food as not "one huge piece or plateful."
                                                                                          Also, people love cute food; things that appear very manageable.
                                                                                          All that aside, I love White Castle and went there almost everyday when I lived near one. Not that they tasted so great- I just loved the size and the onion flavor and the steaminess of them and the fact that I could down a bagful and be just fine! (That wouldn't happen today.) And the Kobe sliders at Morton's Happy Hour are good, but they're not burgers; they're chunks of filet sandwiched in small brioches.

                                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: mamachef

                                                                                            Define "and be just fine"....jk don't haha!

                                                                                            1. re: jhopp217

                                                                                              "Just fine" denoted my ability to top off that fine repast with a half-box of Cap'n Crunch while studying and not gain weight. Back in the day, you know? Those two combined with a lot of black coffee, tuna and cottage cheese were my mainstay diet for years. It's a wonder I've got teeth.

                                                                                            2. re: mamachef

                                                                                              I had no knowledge of White Castle or of either "sliders" or "mini-burgers" until they began to make an appearance in Montréal a few years ago. That said, I like little burgers, and have more than one option for decent small buns. They are far easier to hold and eat without making a mess. I usually make them with ground bison, and a slice of a smallish tomato (out of tomato season, something like the so-called "Campari" tomato). No bacon or cheese. People like them - indeed, they are about the same mass as a meatball, but typically meatballs aren't pure meat - they are bound with egg and some kind of starch as well as other possible ingredients.

                                                                                              I'm actually not at all interested in the rather junk-food original and prefer what I serve. Nothing steamed.

                                                                                              1. re: lagatta

                                                                                                Ah, lagatta, of course, of course you have screamed
                                                                                                ecstasy with small buns, no matter if steamed.

                                                                                                Please accept: there are purists among us of minds most traditional
                                                                                                thinking back on those White Castle days
                                                                                                When wispy steamed patties were served up with onions
                                                                                                and mustard and a slice of dill pickle.

                                                                                                It ain't that We're Right,
                                                                                                but we just might give fight
                                                                                                from today's rampant flight
                                                                                                from that 1930's model that cost just a nickel.

                                                                                                The concept of "slider" has been morphed to new mystery
                                                                                                from those lunch counter days of Depression-era history.
                                                                                                Today, seems that that term can encompass most anything
                                                                                                as long as it's bread, beef, and something that's small.

                                                                                                In today's weird array, the buns are so fat
                                                                                                and burgers like meatballs, ensuring that:
                                                                                                the source of name "slider" is no longer intact
                                                                                                from its early original source.

                                                                                                Imagine, to travel back about 80 years
                                                                                                to see workingmen lunchmen
                                                                                                reduced to sweet tears
                                                                                                jostling their elbows at crowded lunch counters

                                                                                                They'd spent funds that were dear, of nickel, dime. quarter
                                                                                                for a freshly steamed plateful of burgers they'd ordered
                                                                                                Just to savor as down gullet did burger give glide.
                                                                                                The original, pro-generative, onion-steamed slider,
                                                                                                is a place that has basis, an excellent guide.

                                                                                                I'll posit that sliders of yesterday's yore
                                                                                                now firmly ensconced in we old farts' folklore
                                                                                                should serve as a basis
                                                                                                for them seek to replace it.

                                                                                                Now I shall retreat to my beckoning sauna
                                                                                                'cause my crusted old buns need relief from this trauma,
                                                                                                with a seat of soft onions
                                                                                                to relieve my butt bunions,
                                                                                                and, as always, accompanied by steam.

                                                                                            3. K let's bring this thread back to life.. I had White Castle about two hours ago (so I will need to leave the computer soon) They are not what they used to be and cost $7.12 for a four burger pack. Not worth 7 bucks. However they do still have that certain appeal I don't know what they put in them but they taste good going down..

                                                                                              IMO I feel the best sliders/Mini Burgers I have ever had are at White Manna in Hackensack, NJ.
                                                                                              I tried the JC location not so good. I also had White Rose (a little greasy) and the now defunct White Diamond in Linden, NJ. If you have not been to White Manna, Try it you will like it..


                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: bklynsausage


                                                                                                Jfood had a leisurely ride to Laguardia last week and stopped for a 6-pack in the Bronx. The were about $4.50 but i did not have fries or soda (that is 10X of my childhood price).

                                                                                                As a lifelong WC lover i will say that the memories were better than the burgers. The meat was real beef but lacked any seasoning and was somewhat bland. I still liked the onions ketchup and roll with the meat but it may be I have outgrown these as well.

                                                                                                I only find them about once a year (closest to my house is >20 miles) and that time frame may get longer. I will still defend the use of the word slider should only relate to these steamed little gems though.

                                                                                                1. re: jfood

                                                                                                  Tripped me up with that first sentence, but then you started using "I" again (thank goodness, I thought I was experiencing a flashback ;)

                                                                                                  1. re: jfood

                                                                                                    Jfood has nailed it, to the deep quintessential,
                                                                                                    the act of the grab of the grub at White Castle.

                                                                                                    1. re: jfood

                                                                                                      I agree WC is the original Slider and any other joint calling the "mini burgers" that they peddle sliders are just wrong.. I also think the frequency of my visits to WC will dwindle..