Review: Cut + Grind – Juicy Classic Burger

Juicy Classic Burger

When I first heard about Cut and Grind I was very excited. Being quite the meat geek, the idea of being able to select the blend you wanted in your burger intrigued me. They offer two different blends per day, a “juicy” blend with fattier cuts, and a “skinny” blend with meatier, tougher cuts. The meat is all dry aged on site in fridges at the back of the restaurant.

On the day we went, the “juicy” blend was chuck, rump and rib, although the proportions remain unknown. I was slightly disappointed to not try the more unusual cuts – for burgers – as this is close to the blend as I use in my burgers at home. I ordered the Juicy Classic with no changes.

Construction

The burgers look amazing when delivered. They were beautifully constructed, well stacked and centered, with just a cheeky peek of a pickle coming down one side of mine. The thin, heavily toasted brioche bun helped make it look amazing.

Patty

Almost medium-well done patty

With a name like Cut + Grind and a focus on the meat, we had high hopes for this patty. However, the result was utterly disappointing. This burger should be taken as an example of what not to do in cooking – to focus on the individual ingredients, and not the final meal.

First of all, my patty was almost entirely unseasoned. This leads to bland, bland meat.

Secondly, the grind was far too fine. While the patty was not press moulded (à la GBK) and was of the irregular dimensions that you’d associate with hand-shaped patty, it was extremely dense and closely packed. It had the texture you’d find either when you overworked the meat while moulding, or maybe did not chill the grind enough before moulding. The result of this is that the meat when worked tends towards a paste consistency, and too much moulding – or too warm a mince – means all the little nooks and crannies in the patty get collapsed and filled, yielding a very dry patty when cooked, as without the holes there’s nowhere for the juices to run except out onto the grill. This patty was as dry as a bone – despite being the “juicy” blend – where were all these juices? Perhaps they accidentally gave me the “skinny” blend by mistake. I’d say the patty was very lean.

Thirdly, and more of this below, the condiments overwhelmed the patty, being much too sweet. You could barely taste the beef, and certainly none of the supposed quality of the dry aged meat.

Combined with the medium/medium well doneness, my patty was dry, dense, and unseasoned. This was a serious disappointment. You can use the best beef in the world like this and it still wouldn’t be a good burger.

Bun

The bun was a brioche, heavily toasted on the bottom. It was a decent effort, warm, light (for a brioche) and toasted enough to keep it together.

Toppings & Condiments

The toppings were where this burger seriously fell down. Rather than compliment the patty and bun – as they should – these condiments actively fought against them.

The “pickle” situation

I had a mass of elongated “pickles” on top of my burger. However, these were not traditional pickles in any way. While they were soft, they certainly weren’t pickled in vinegar or fermented, and were extremely sweet. They lacked any other taste apart from sweetness.

One of the reasons for putting pickles on a burger is that the acidity and sourness cut though the fat of the beef. Without this acidity, they stop complimenting the beef and start hiding it.

The cheese was a nicely melted cheddar, although was largely flavourless, and lacked the silky texture of a traditional American sliced cheese and so seemed quite pointless. Honestly, I barely noticed it.

The burger sauce on the bottom was very sweet, lacking sharpness from mustard or tang from ketchup. As such it was a fairly flavourless, cloyingly-sweet and quite offensive sauce.

Summary

I took umbrage at the name of this burger, the “classic”. Well, call me old fashioned, but if you call a burger a “classic” it should refer back to a classic hamburger/cheeseburger style, and not contain particular innovations. Two features of this burger violated this ideal, the offensive pickle situation, and the sauce. The pickles and burger sauce utterly ruined this burger for me. They entirely hid the flavour of the meat, and when your whole branding is predicated on the quality of the beef then you are seriously letting yourself down.

Ultimately, I couldn’t taste enough of the beef, and as such it was huge letdown. Best avoided.

Score

  • Bun: 3
  • Construction: 5
  • Lamination: 3
  • Patty: 2
  • Toppings & Condiments: 1
  • Total: 2.8

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