10 BURGER VOCABULARIES | 4 Burger terms burger fans should know. SINGAPORE’S BEST BURGERS | 6 A compilation of Singapore’s best burgers.
JUNE2013 ISSUE 16
Burger Hunt eMagazine
A PURPLE SAGE MONTHLY PUBLICATION
Founder & Publisher TONY SEOW Editorial Advisor SHIRLEY KOK Editor in Chief TIDA WETWIJITTRAKAN
Cover image by JONES THE GROCER
This issue was inspired by someone I once knew who collected burger pictures. He was so determined to fill up his Facebook album with 200 burger pictures from every joint possible in Singapore and other Southeast Asian countries that he traveled to. Initially he wanted the album to embrace only one burger from each joint, but eventually gave up because it was quite impossible to find so many burger places, especially in Singapore. Every week, it was his mission to try one new burger with his best friend and it became something he really looked forward to. I always anticipated his feedbacks and was always delighted to find that some famous joints are really mediocre, and some hidden gems were surprisingly fantastic.
This issue hardly has 200 pictures, but I had the chance to relive the burger hunt and chose only the best of them for you to consider trying. If it’s any particular sentiment that I feel about this issue, it’s gratitude. Gratitude for such lovely creations of every person with a burger passion that decided to offer it to us, and respect for that talent and patience involved in the process of creating the perfect burger. Here’s a toast to all the beautiful seasonings, cheeses, lettuces, and sauces involved in this stacked juicy goodness.
Tida Editor in Chief
Burgers by Jewel Café and Bar
T A S T E
J U N E
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CONTENTS FUN FACTS
10 BURGER VOCABULARIES | Think you are a true burger fanatic? Find out how many burger terms you know.
BURGER COMPILATION | 8 of Singapore’s best burgers we think you should try.
A STORY TO TELL
MAN, FOOD, & TECHNOLOGY | A juicy interview with software entrepreneur and food writer Jon Yongfook Cockle.
SUMMER OF COLOURS | Purple Sage’s most vibrant decorations with spectacular details at your service.
SALT | One of the most incredible gift by Mother Nature, but can we do without it?
SLOPPER A burger smothered in red and green chilies.
Vocabularies There are many disclaimers of the origin of burgers. Once called ‘hamburger’, many individuals and cities in the USA have claimed they created and named it after Hamburg, Germany. Origins aside, here are some burger vocabularies if you are a burger-fanatic.
PATTY MELT A buttered and fried burger with a patty, sautéed onions and cheese between two slices of rye bread.
AUSTRALIAN BURGER With minimum ground beef, this burger includes beetroots, grilled onion, and sometimes cheese, pineapple, and a well-done fried egg.
JUICY LUCY In Minnesota, USA, this burger has a cheese slice placed inside the patty instead of on top, causing it to melt and ooze out once bitten.
LOW CARB BURGER
A burger made with higher quality meat, such as ground steak or other lean beef.
A burger that uses large pieces of lettuce in place of a bun.
SLIDER A very small burger patty sprinkled with diced onions and sometimes cheese, served on an equally small bun.
A traditional Northeast Mississippi delicacy with a patty made from beef or pork and an extender like soybeans, deep fried and served with mustard, pickles and onions.
In Alberta, Canada, this is a burger made with a pressed Ukrainian sausage.
LUTHER BURGER A burger or cheeseburger prepared with one or more glazed doughnuts in place of a bun.
Compilation. of the best burgers in Singapore.
Burgers â€“ one of the simplest forms of comfort food around the world popularized by junk food chains, can be one of the most enjoyable meal to order. When done right, these beauties are a wonderful gourmet chow. Here are some of the best that you can find in Singapore.
HUMMERSTONS BRUNCH BURGER
280 grams USDA Grilled Beef Patty, ApplewoodSmoked Bacon, Caramelized Onions, Tomato, Fried Egg, Greens, Fresh Jalapeno, Hummerstons Fries and Spiced Tomato Chili Aioli Another fabulous burger, Hummerstons impresses with their largely stacked juiciness. The applewood-smoked bacon, fried egg, and jalapenos gave the burger a distinct smokiness and texture that tastes like breakfast, lunch, and dinner goodness all in one.
THE ‘B’ BURGER
160g Dry Aged Beef Patty, Caramelised Onions, French Comté Cheese,Capers and Garlic Mayonnaise. Created by the Michelin Star Chef Bruno Menard, the popular burger has got all the basics right and is very juicy. For those with a rich palate, the burger could use a little more salt and pepper.
USDA PRIME BURGER
$35.00 MORTON’S STEAK HOUSE
280 grams USDA Prime Beef Patty, Cheddar Cheese, Sautéed Mushrooms, Lightly Toasted Bun, Steak Fries. If you are looking for a ‘less-ismore’ burger, Morton’s Steak House does it best. Besides great steaks, they are also known for their simple yet mouthwatering burgers. There are also choices of Swiss or Crumbled Blue Cheese for the stronger palates. For a more complex burger, add sautéed onions and crisp bacon as well.
DE BURG BURGER
$18.50 DE BURG
200g Australian Striploin Patty, BBQ Sauce, Cheese, Grilled Crispy Bacon, Grilled Portobello, Salad, Tomato slice, Onions, and Mayonnaise. As decadent as its reputation, this coffee shop burger joint never ceases to blow the mind. Their patty is absolutely unadulterated â€“ no herbs, no spices, no binding agents, and the Portobello mushroom adds tremendous juiciness to the signature burger as well. Make sure you say hi to Andrew, the passionate creator of De Burg if he is around.
THE ORIOLE BURGER
180g US Angus Patty, Cheddar Cheese, Lettuce, Tomato, Onions, Hand-Cut Chips, and Tomato Relish. Besides being one of the best looking burgers, this burger tastes beautifully smokey. The tomato relish complemented the attractive dish brilliantly, giving a sweet sensation to the salted angus beef patty. One of the best parts was the hand-cut chips that were crisp on the outside and hot and fluffy on the inside.
AUSTRALIAN WAGYU BURGER
$26.00 JONES THE GROCER
200g Premium Australian Wagyu Patty, Bacon, Gruyére Cheese, Truffle Mayonnaise, Pickles, Mustard, Bois Boudran Sauce, Caramelised Onions, House-Baked Bun. The beautiful burger is flawless and seasoned with fragrant herbs and spices. The truffle mayonnaise and bois boudran sauce brought out a great balance of flavours – savoury, and mildly sweet flavours of the patty, alongside crunchy vinegary pickles, and sweet and savoury caramelised onions.
CUSTOM MADE BURGER
$15.00 FAT BOYS
150grams Homemade Premium Beef Patty, Homemade Barbeque Sauce, Aged Cheddar Cheese, Portobello Mushrooms and Homemade Bun. When food is cooked out of love and passion, one can always tell. This burger tasted and looked quite like passion itself. The flavours were rich and well balanced with added Portobello mushroom that gave it the extra juiciness.
$20.00 JEWEL CAFÉ AND BAR Stack of Crispy Bacon, Luncheon Meat, 150g Beef Patty, Cheddar, Lettuce, Onions, Tomatoes, and a Sunny-Side-Up.
Adrian, the owner, had gone through many types of luncheon meat to find the perfect one to complement this burger. A fantastic meal anytime of the day, try the OMG for a crisp and crunchy burger that drips with luncheon meat and beef patty flavours – something you probably haven’t tried before.
A STORY TO TELL
MAN, FOOD & TECHNOLOGY. “I think in the last few decades we’ve seen food and cooking get adopted by men as a tactic for attracting women. It wasn’t always this way. Now though, it means one’s skill at cooking is often looked at in a subtly competitive way, as men already do with their clothes, or their jobs, or their karaoke skills. I think this is a net win for everyone, it means women get treated to nicer food and men learn more about how to cook well.” - Jon Yongfook Cockle The unique name has been circulating around Singapore’s über savvy crowd – fashion shows, women’s magazines, men’s magazines, the hippest parties in town. The first time we spotted him was at Art Stage 2012, Marina Bay Sands in his sleek black blazer and clean-cut, slightly grey hair, a colour only George Clooney and Richard Gere have been able to pull off so far. The name is Jon Yongfook Cockle – a software entrepreneur who rose to popularity in Singapore within just two years.
The second time round, he had joined Cookpad which flourished into one of Japan’s biggest technology company. “They were basically doing what I was doing on a much bigger scale,” he continued with a sense of seriousness – something we aren’t so used to when it comes to talking about food.
He accomplished his first success in 2008 starting an online recipe portal in Japan.
Compared to the magnitude of his ‘pensive’ look on Instagram, he was actually rather soft spoken and relaxed in person. His tweets, on the other hand, are quite contrary to his reallife personality, translating into suave remarks of human behavior, technology, food trends, and at times even parodic opinions of his individuality.
“It got quite popular and it was just a place where you can share recipes,” he said, “It got featured in TIME magazine as one of the best websites in 2008.” In 2009 he sold it. But it didn’t end there.
As we waited for our fourth burger of the day to arrive, we finally moved onto the topic of burgers itself. “What significance do burgers have in pop culture?” We asked.
“Burgers seem to constantly be in a renaissance, being reinvented or refined. I think it’s because a burger is a really simple canvas for creation fundamentally it’s just meat in a bun, so as a chef you can riff off that quite easily. Burgers are close to our heart because they are probably one of the few forms of food that you eat as a kid that you can still justify eating as an adult, since “adult” versions are easy to find. I don’t eat fish fingers or alphabet pasta anymore as an adult, but I certainly go out of my way to seek good burgers!” And
“I try to cook a few times a week actually. And it depends. If I am dieting or I am really watching what I eat, then I’ll cook almost every day so I can have complete control. Right now my gas is broken. So everything I have been cooking is in my Le Creuset crock pot. When I feel like Asian food, I cook curry or rending; and when I feel like Western flavours, I cook stew, soup, pulled pork, you know.” When it comes to his favourite things to eat, he prefers anything he would be too lazy to make himself like soup dumplings, dim sum, and xiao long bao. “I make gyoza at home a lot.” He added.
A STORY TO TELL
So what is the most memorable thing you’ve ever eaten? “Good question,” he replied. One dish he still vividly remembers was at the Australian Chef, Luke Mangan’s restaurant called Salt back in Tokyo where he used to live. “It was a layer of many things. At the bottom, it was a very crisp and thin pastry with sweet and savoury onions in it. The second layer was a big roasted fig which was really oozy, sweet and tart, and on top of that was a perfectly salty, naturally oily piece of mackerel. The combination of everything in that dish was awesome. But they switch their menu around every week or so.” He seemed to love the topic and continued with another experience he had. “I was at this place called Bo Innovation before they got their Michelin star. My date didn’t show up. She wasn’t a very nice person. But it turned out to be of the best meals of my life. I had a budget for that meal so I got the more expensive meal for myself. The wine I had was fantastic. And I had their molecular Xiao Long Bao - this little sphere that was filled with Xiao Long Bao broth. It had an edible polymer and when you put it in your mouth it bursts. It was delicious.” He then continued to tell us that he is no longer into fine dining food these days. “Now,
I prefer much more rustic food. I am a big fan of hawker food so I will go out and seek, let’s say, the best wanton mee. Best wanton mee I’ve ever had was at Old Airport Road. There’re two there and they’re both great. Or the one at lavender food centre which is probably my favourite. Very long queue though. But worth it.” How did you start cooking anyway? “I started in 2006-2007 when I was back in Tokyo. When you are living alone then you want to learn how to cook right? When your love interest comes over, you want to be a good cook. You want to be able to take care of the girl you are dating because you don’t want to be a lazy bum who doesn’t know how to make toast. Actually, I got into it because of Gordon Ramsey who at that time wasn’t as sensational as he is now. He had his peak of being a character of himself when he is doing Hell’s Kitchen. He also had a show in the UK called the “The F Word” where he got celebrities in and cooked with them. It wasn’t about his temper at all even though he had his occasional temper tantrums. But he is a perfectionist and he cares about what he does. Before that it was more about his pursuit of perfection. If you are a creative person I think you will understand that psychology. For the first time, I
actually thought this is a chef I can relate to, and I can actually look up to. I read his back story and it’s easy to be impressed by the guy because he worked really really hard to get to where he is right now.” We were impressed at how he casually answered all of our questions and took generous bites of the burgers at the same time. As he bit into his last burger, we proceeded with our last question: Share with us some cooking tips? “You need the basics. In terms of cost benefit ratio, the most you can improve your food by doing the least work is just by having the basics done right. Don’t buy cheap table salt. Buy proper salt. Same goes for pepper. Have good seasoning. Pay a few extra dollars for good salt. You can taste the difference immediately. The same goes for olive oil. You don’t need to have 15 different pans as well. You just need one good pan. Like a cast iron pan - something that can transfer heat evenly across the surface and yeah just by having those two things, the quality and taste of your food will improve a lot by not having to do too much.”
TASTE JUNE ISSUE DIRECTORY
JEWEL CAFÉ AND BAR
PACIFIC PLAZA #01-04/05/06
129 RANGOON ROAD
9 SCOTTS ROAD SINGAPORE 228210
TEL: 6298 9216
JONES THE GROCER
119 BUKIT MERAH LANE 1
ION ORCHARD #04-14
2 ORCHARD TURN SINGAPORE 238801
TEL: 6666 6666
TEL: 6884 5597
MORTON’S THE STEAKHOUSE
18 MOHAMED SULTAN ROAD
MANDARIN ORIENTAL SINGAPORE
FOURTH STOREY 5 RAFFLES AVENUE
TEL: 6735 8840
MARINA SQUARE SINGAPORE 039797 TEL: 6339 3740
96 SOMERSET ROAD
TEL: 8428 1620
TEL: 6238 8348
From pastels to intense hues and even dazzling incandescent shades, Purple Sage proudly brings you a summer full of activity and fun in an explosion of colour. Besides carefully chosen dishes to tantalize your taste buds, Purple Sage also assists our clients in venue
Named after the dazzlingly coloured birds in flight, these birds of paradise form an attractive landscape at events.
Pops of vibrant summer colours in the form of
sourcing, event styling
capsicums, red germaniums,
and even equipment
and bright yellow sunflowers
make a great decoration for a
a worthy place to
lively night of celebration â€“ a
stopover this season!
feast for both the eyes and taste buds.
An intense fusion of oriental elements always brings a sense of sexy to the party.
Scarlet, the colour of passion, adds a touch of charm to any chic dĂŠcor.
Tall opaque light boxes and
Customized violet menu cards
dangling flowers of red and
and luscious organza lined
green give resemble ancient Burgundy organza lined the
a sunny but breezy rooftop
Greek columns at a party at
buffet line of freshly made
Gardens By The Bay.
dishes at Singaporeâ€™s General Hospital.
Intricate and creative presentations of fresh flowers add a touch of exquisiteness, creating a memorable experience for the guests.
Tiffany Blue organza fabrics never cease to create an air of elegance to Western Sit-Down banquets.
The yellow of sunflowers and ocean blue gives a brightening effect to Xiaxueâ€™s Housewarming Party buffet line.
The single creation by mother nature that makes your food more delicious than you ever thought possible. It absolutely baffles me when I sample a burger that has little or no seasoning. It made me realize how important salt is when it comes to the patties. How can you not put enough salt on your patty? I once had a crunchy fresh veggie sandwich. It was walnut bread with onion slices, tomatoes, coriander, cucumber, capsicum, mango ginger (this was spectacular), lettuce, and Gouda cheese. The only seasoning it had was pink Himalayan salt. And I tell you – it was the best sandwich I’ve ever had in my life. The salt brought out the best flavours and fragrance in each and every single vegetable in that sandwich, and the toasted crunch of the bread made it perfect. We had it on Christmas eve and ate it while watching Inception. It was one of the most memorable Christmas eve I’ve ever had. For some reason, I wasn’t ever able to replicate that sandwich again. But one thing I know is it made me realize what amazing things salt does to your food. Being exposed to many types of cultures and religions growing up, I was exposed to all kinds of diet. Recently, it was all the types of fasting done over festivals, the equinox, and astrologically powerful period. That was when I also came across this diet.. A diet far worse than fasting – The Salt-Free Diet. It is a powerful one – detaching your mind from the salt in your food. The body goes into so much of distress when there is no seasoning in your food. The mind also starts to find other things to hold on to – whether it is the lemon in your buttered rice, or vinegar in your
salad. It makes one realize how much we are attached to the senses in our body. It boils down to the truth – we don’t need salt to survive. Trying the salt-free diet makes you break boundaries, habits of eating unhealthy food and adding salt to the familiar flavours of your favourite dishes. Eliminating sodium from your diet flushes out the toxins in your body and allows your kidney to rest from the hard work of salt-flushing. After a month’s time, you start to realize how strong your mind can be. The willpower of abstaining from salt gives you a new sense of determination that your body is stronger than you think it is, and so is your mind. You can now enjoy the subtlest of flavours in anything and there is a newfound sense of appreciation for every single dish you try. The worst thing is...you also realize how much of junk you have been eating your whole life. You become more aware of your body and are able to identify what your body really needs – not just cravings of the mind. Your body feels light, and your conscience is cleared. So the question is – how game are we to try this diet? One would wonder why anybody would put themselves through the distress of conquering the mind through diet restrictions. But if you could overcome the mind with such focus, you would realize how much more you could achieve in your life as well. Like I heard somewhere before – “Every little thing you do is a reflection of how you view life.” So take the challenge, go the extra mile for your mind and body, and tell us how amazing you feel afterwards.