Spicy Miso Burger, Bachi Burger - Vegas, USA

Venue: Bachi Burger is raved about by the burger fanatics of Vegas. Off the strip, this Asian-inspired restaurant has a buzz about it that I simply had to check out.

The Burger: The 'Spicy Miso Burger' may well be the most experimental number I have ever encountered. With Angus beef, onions, Shishito pepper, mayo, lettuce, roasted garlic, Swiss cheese, fried egg and an apple vinaigrette, I was highly intrigued to sample the magic.


The Taste: I would love to know the thought process with a creation like this.

Starting at the beef, this custom blend of Angus beef was a winner, excelling in taste through high-quality well-seasoned meat. The cook time was slightly overdone as I asked for medium but received closer to well done.

The kick came through the peppers and garlic, surprisingly not overpowering, however, despite the 'spicy' labelling. In-fact, the fried egg offset any kind of heat very well, though I do struggle with the ooze of a yolk throughout a burger.

The apple vinaigrette was simply not potent enough in the burger, perhaps intentionally given its unique nature, but it would have built upon the dynamic flavours. In-fact, the same could also be said for the lack of mayo and cheese: neither really showing up on the tastebuds prominently enough.

The bun was right up there with the freshest I have tasted, whilst also holding everything together.

The Summary: Points for originality with the 'Spicy Miso Burger' for sure. Bachi Burger know how to put a burger together with a unique Asian twist. The good came with the delicious meat and intriguing flavours throughout, rounded off with an excellent bun. The negative came with the slight overcooking of the meat, as well as the lack of prominence of the apple vinaigrette, mayo and cheese. Still, it is evident that quality and creativity thrives in this restaurant and I'd love to go back on my next visit to Vegas.

Patty Master Musings:

  • I also ordered the truffle fries which, frankly, I couldn't stomach. Very potent stench that just didn't bode well.
  • We were very well looked after by the knowledgeable and friendly staff.
  • Did I Dip It? Not necessary with so many different flavours bouncing around.

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Double Double Animal Style, In-N-Out Burger - Vegas, USA

There is a charm to In-N-Out that does not exist anymore in the modern burger chain. It has the vibes of a 50’s throwback rustling up fresh burger goodness for its loyal customer base. I can only imagine this is what McDonald’s would be like had Ray Croc not taken the helm. And that in it self is the reassurance that this place is special. This is a chain that has not franchised, not sold out, but instead retained every last value they stood for on day one. It shows with its employees, it shows in the atmosphere and good grief it shows in the food.

Coming from the original line of fast food restaurants, you order at the till in In-In-Out and wait for your order to be called out. In this way, it’s like any other fast food joint. Hell, even when the food lands in front of you on a red tray, the expectation is simple fast food. When you take a bite, however, you realise it’s so much more…

I ordered a 'Double Double Animal Style' with fries and a drink. It came to a modest $10, just about the cheapest you’ll find a large meal for on the Vegas Strip, without eating complete garbage.


Just holding this burger in your hand is enough evidence of where the similarities end between In-N-Out and every other average fast food chain out there. The freshness of the ingredients, especially that tender bun become abundantly clear.

The ‘Double Double Animal Style’ comes with two mustard patties, lettuce, tomato, two cheese slices, onions and ‘spread’, served between a toasted bun.

I’m a classic burger kinda guy. Fancy ingredients and highly stacked burgers can be fantastic when done right, but winding it back to the essentials and doing it well is just as exciting. The ‘Double Double’ at In-N-Out is perfection of the ‘classic burger’.

Starting at the patties, the mustard infusion (one of the key changes when making your burger ‘Animal Style’) takes the flavour a tier above, but does not overpower. Yes, the patties are served well done and are the classic XX sizing, but the flavour does not suffer, especially with that mustard coating.

Lettuce, tomato and onions sit well in any burger, but help build that fresh feeling to the ‘Double Double Animal Style’. Paired with the fresh toasted bun, there’s a prevalent theme here; one that feels alien when you’re in a fast food joint. Can it really be that fresh?!

Between the cheese and the spread, the flavours are just beautifully balanced. The latter feels like a simple burger sauce concoction, whilst the American cheese oozes over the sides of each patty.

The key to this burger is balance and freshness of ingredients, paired with simplicity. The In-N-Out ‘Double Double Animal Style’ burger is, without a doubt, the best fast food burger I have ever consumed and deserves a perfect score for that reason alone. What I’d do to have one of these in England...

Patty Master Musings:

  • I planned to hit In-N-Out once during my trip. We ended up there almost every single day.
  • Did I Dip It? Good grief no.

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Guinness Bacon Cheeseburger, Hard Rock Cafe - Vegas, USA

I’ve done my fair share of Hard Rock Cafes and if there’s one thing I’ve learnt about them it’s that the Americans do them best. Despite the chain originating in London, the service industry in the States trumps the UK on every level, perhaps due to the glaring issues of minimum wage found across the pond. Regardless, it’s a welcoming experience knowing you will be looked after properly during your meal.

I was to saddened to learn that the Hard Rock Café located in front of the Hard Rock Hotel off the strip had closed, though understandably so given its location. Instead, I ventured to the Hard Rock Café on the strip; the second largest in the world behind Orlando, Florida.

Before we move in to the food, let me say that this is an awesome establishment. The memorabilia is fantastic and if you get the opportunity to go to the top floor, make sure you do it. Every Hard Rock has unique memorabilia on offer and the Vegas restaurant houses some of the best, for obvious reasons.

The menu didn’t remain open for long. The Artisan Fries are always a given, therefore it’s just what burger to enjoy and spotting the new ‘Guinness Bacon Cheeseburger’ made the process a simple one. It included the usual half-pound patty made with Angus Beef blend, topped with Jameson bacon jam, Guinness cheese sauce, crispy lettuce and vine-ripened tomato. I’m always pleased to be offered how I want the meat served too, something almost unheard of in the UK now. Medium rare, please!


And it was served a perfect medium rare. Yes! Points for this alone as the juiciness of the meat shone through, though it was unfortunately too salty on the occasional bite; likely unevenly seasoned.

The bacon jam was just fantastic. This is an increasingly popular choice in burgers nowadays providing the wonderful usual taste of bacon and pairing it with a unique sweetness. The whiskey taste from the Jameson element of the jam was just enough to tweak the flavour, though still felt more prevalent than the Guinness.


Without a doubt the cheese sauce was delicious, though I would have liked it to be a bit more prominent on the burger, particularly that unique Guinness infusion.

The ‘Guinness Bacon Cheeseburger’ is a solid regular addition to the already impressive Hard Rock menu. There is no doubt in my mind that I would order this again for that delicious bacon jam alone. Despite the drawbacks in the unevenly seasoned patty and slightly imbalanced cheese sauce, the ‘Guinness Bacon Cheeseburger’ is a top choice.

Patty Master Musings:

  • Bacon jam, baconnaise, bacon, bacon, bacon. Bacon!
  • Alcohol in burgers seems to be a growing trend. Providing it does not overpower, I love the possibilities.
  • Did I Dip It? Absolutely not. Bacon JAM!

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Hubert Keller Burger, Burger Bar - Vegas, USA

Venue: Nestled within Mandalay Bay's shopping mall lies Hubert Keller's 'ultimate burger experience' Burger Bar. We are most certainly in posh burger territory here, with questionable price tags to match what I would assume to be high quality burger goodness. Still, the reviews are on point.

The Burger: Can't go wrong with Hubert's favourite choice, right? The 'Hubert Keller' burger boasts Buffalo meat, Caramelised onion, baby spinach and blue cheese on a Ciabatta Bun. Served with red wine and shallot sauce.


The Good: I was stuck choosing this burger for about fifteen minutes. The waitress had to come back 'round twice before I made the decision and even then I hadn't really made my mind up. For this reason, I had not realised it was actually buffalo meat, which came as a welcome surprise from the first bite. It was beautifully tender, perfectly cooked medium and almost fell away from the rest of the patty. Buffalo is typically a much leaner meat, so I was expecting it to be dry, but this was certainly not the case.

The key tastes, aside from the meat, were in the caramelised onions and red wine and shallot sauce. The former are always a welcome addition to a burger, whilst the latter is about as alien to me as it gets. Served separately, the sauce moistened the already tender meat and empowered, without overpowering, the flavours throughout.

When the burger was served, I was immediately worried about the bun. Ciabatta is not something I have previously encountered for a burger, but it absolutely worked. Being slightly tougher than the average bun, it helped soak up the sauce to retain additional flavour where perhaps a regular bun would have gone soggy. Bonus points for originality.


The Bad: There isn't much I disliked, but the lack of blue cheese was slightly disappointing. Where all the other flavours were perfectly balanced, a little more prominence on the blue cheese would likely have perfected this number.

The Summary: This is right up there with one of the most unique burgers I have encountered. The pairing of buffalo meat on a ciabatta bun worked extremely well when combined with caramelised onions and red wine and shallot sauce. The only drawback came with the volume of blue cheese. I'll be back Hubert Keller, I'll be back.

Patty Master Musings:

  • I hadn't heard of Hubert Keller. Sue me. Great burgers though -- good lad.
  • Mandalay Bay is a fantastic casino and the shopping area, whilst small, have some fantastic stores in.
  • There are some more expensive items on the menu, including wagyu/kobe that I will be taking on next year when I return.
  • The vibes in here are great. Finer burger dining, but a very welcoming atmosphere.
  • Did I Dip It? Absolutely not.

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Bacon Cheeseburger, Dick's Smokehouse - Birmingham, UK

I love a food festival. I love a burger food festival above all else. Taste & Liquor’s second annual ‘Big Fat Burger Fest’ hosted in the SK Building in Digbeth promised top vendors in attendance to dish up a burger bonanza. Included in the list of attendees was ‘Dick’s Smokehouse’; Warwickshire-based BBQ kings rustling up slow cooked meats of all varieties.

With just four menu items, all of which I wanted to devour, the choice for me had to be the ‘Bacon Cheeseburger’; a staple classic and often a favourite of mine. Notably the other items on the menu included pulled pork and shredded beef, as well as the ‘Ultimate Burger’; the latter of which I will be sampling upon my return.

The ‘Bacon Cheeseburger’ boasted the usual suspects of bacon and cheese (maybe didn’t need to tell you that?) but also included pickles, lettuce and a tomato relish, between a brioche bun.

Not knowing what to expect, I was thrilled to be handed a wonderfully crafted burger with thick bacon peaking out each side and cheese melted across the patty.

This burger made the event for me and was by far my favourite, ticking most of the boxes on my mental checklist. You can tell when a vendor specialises in quality meat and knows how to cook it. This was evident with the juicy and well-seasoned patty, cooked medium well but still oozing juicy goodness.


The bacon was plentiful, thick and absolutely packed with flavour. With a crispy crunch and a smoky tone in each bite, it’s a pleasure when the two most important ingredients run the show.

The cheese was balanced well, though was relatively mild in taste overall, a little outperformed by flavours elsewhere.

Tomato relish is an interesting one. Offering a slight kick to proceedings, it was enjoyable, though perhaps a bit limited in flavour where the classics of ketchup, mayonnaise and mustard normally run riot. Whilst this was a solid relish, maybe the addition of mayo or mustard could take this burger to the next level of flavour town.

The bun was heavily seeded, fresh and well-balanced. Who doesn’t love a brioche bun nowadays?

I was unaware of Dick’s Smokehouse before going in to this event. I am now a huge fan of these guys as the ‘Bacon Cheeseburger’ sits high on my rankings table. The highlight of this burger was the quality of meat, though every element worked well to build a powerhouse of flavours, with my only minor drawbacks coming with the relish and cheese. Next time I’m going for the ‘Ultimate Burger’.

Patty Master Musings:

  • Love the name. Gotta be said.
  • Did I Dip It? So many delicious flavours bouncing around here, so no need.

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