Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Best Burger Ever and Genre Fear

Totally unrelated topics, but yesterday I had the best burger of my life. It was the Dirty Love Burger (excellent name, no?) at Tim Love's eponymous Love Shack in Fort Worth, Texas.

The famous chef has outfitted a beer-garden spot in the stockyards with little tables and either fire-pits (winter) or fans (summer), for the delight and comfort of burger-noshing regulars (plus Europeans in Texas for extended holidays.) Yes, the people watching is exquisite (dark socks! sandals! funny accents!) and the place is lined on three sides with beer cartons ready for the evening revelries, but the real show-stopper is the food itself. The Dirty Love Burger comes with lettuce, tomato, American cheese, a thick slab of bacon and Love Sauce..topped with a fried quail egg. Never had quail egg on a burger? Don't be frightened, my friends. It's a flavor explosion without the messy yolk, and served with a side of their pitch-perfect onion rings, is close to heaven itself. I think if Jesus were to walk around Fort Worth, he would definitely hit the Love Shack.

As I mentioned in the last post, I had a great time with The Village Book Club in Dallas. Aren't they cute? (I was relieved that someone else wore jeans. Must remind self: Dallas is fancier than Fort worth.)


As I mentioned the previous post, one of The Village Readers (as opposed to The Village People) as this question: Is there a genre, as a writer, you would shy away from? The answer is yes, and it would be detective or murder-mystery fiction. The problem is I absolutely adore a great mystery. Whether it's a movie, book, or television show, I'm into figuring the thing out from the get-go, and when I'm right it's soooooo disappointing. As a writer, I'm not sure how I'd handle the twist factor with the balance of relevant clues--and I'd hate if ANY reader figured it out before the end. Maybe one day I'll give it a shot, but for now I'll stick to character-driven regional realism. (Who's in graduate school? Me, that's who!)

Burger fan? Where do you go for The Best Burger Ever?

16 Comments:

Blogger ScottM said...

They put a bacon cheeseburger on the menu at Razoo's for people like me who don't have enough sense to order Cajun food at a Cajun food restaurant. It's surprisingly good, but the last time I ate there I happened to get a stomach virus the same day, so now I associate the two and will probably never go back. How dumb is that?

9:00 AM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

Not dumb at all. Stomach virus + dining at a restaurant = Never Go Back. I don't care if they're not related events, it's easy math.

9:03 AM  
Blogger Travis Erwin said...

The addition of the quail egg is intriguing but those veggies gotta go.

I'll link you up with the others for My Town Mondays.

And I know of two really good burgers here in Amarillo. The cornbread hamburger from Barnaby's Beanery and the monstrous burger at Coyote Bluff. I'll be dining there Thursday witha couple of other local writers so maybe I'll post a few pics and whatnot soon.

9:31 AM  
Blogger Patti said...

Chris Madrid's is Husband's fav here...and i laughed when you wrote that dallas is fancier than ft.worth. snottier, i'll give 'em.

10:50 AM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

I've had the cornbread burger at Barnaby's in Amarillo. Travis, you speak the truth.

Glad I made you laugh, Patti. You know, I enjoy my trips to visit friends in the big city (many of whom believe Fort Worth is a small suburb of Dallas) but I always breathe a little deeper when I get home. Must be the looser pants.

11:03 AM  
Blogger Patti said...

mmmm, corn dog and tater tots...

11:25 AM  
Blogger Kern said...

I have had some great burgers in my 41 years. Denton County Independent Hamburger Co. on the square has always been the gold standard. Arnold's in Amarillo on Washington St. is up there as well. There used to be a place in Denton called The Cozy Oaks that served a bleu-cheeseburger with fried bleu cheese balls on the side. Broke my heart when they closed. The bacon-cheeseburger at the old No Frills Grill in Lubbock was also a favorite. The "Dirty Double Love Burger" stole my heart. It is my new standard. By the way, Tim Love is a Denton boy!

11:44 AM  
Blogger WordVixen said...

I think I'd have to go just to try a quail egg... I have an obsession with trying new things.

10:06 PM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

Me too, Wordvixen. I usually go for the quirkiest thing on the menu, and I'm rarely disappointed.

Although there was that time I ate homemade yogurt in Macedonia, which might have been a mistake. They poured milk in a pan, covered it with a towel and few days later--voila, let's have yogurt!

4:22 AM  
Blogger Mathilda said...

Horrible, awful workshop. Cried afterwards. Vowed to never write again. I knew it was going to go that way because I tried something new and it just didn't work. I feel like I wasted a workshop.

Read Wonderful Girl. Loved it. On my favorite list ;)

Burger... Culvers. Or Kopps (I think that is a Wisconsin thing).

Off to change my master's degree to physics or architecture. Or maybe, I will go to med school.

5:37 PM  
Blogger "Bluebonnet in the snow" said...

In addition to the Love Shack, I recommend Dutch's and Pappas Burgers. The buns at Dutch's are awesome! And there's always the tried & true Kincaid's Hamburgers. I'm getting hungry just thinking about this!

6:21 PM  
Blogger *Tyler* said...

I have to give a shout out to the Golden Light Cafe and their green chili cheese burger on a toasted bun.

7:22 PM  
Blogger Travis Erwin said...

I agree tyler, you can never go wrong with a burger from the golden light.

5:21 AM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

Green chile cheeseburger??? How did I miss that??? I'll have to make a special trip to Amarillo.

So, Dutch has hot buns. Good to know. We've tried to get to Kincaid's several times but always manage to arrive when they're closed or it's a national holiday.

Mathilda, you've inspired me to do a post about workshops for the main blog. But, an immediate comments-only intervention is in order. Remember that the members in your workshop are not God, are not always correct, and are highly capable of bringing in reads that are less-than-well received. And, I'm hazarding a guess that they're on the beginning leg of their own literary journeys--hardly the audience that should determine your calling as a writer. Only you can do that.

So please, put down your architect school catalogs. Maybe head to Culvers for a Best Burger Ever? Between bites, you should take your frustration and write a scathing satire on workshop cliches. Include at least five self-important references to "This piece doesn't work for me because..."

Or, craft your acceptance speech for your Pulitzer in which you thank those people who "helped" you on your path and are, quite bravely, still hopeful as they languish in obscurity.

After you get it out of your system, you can delete it or save it in a special file (not the SEND file!), then go on to write your next utterly fabulous story.

Go, Mathilda, go!

10:14 AM  
Blogger Mathilda said...

Hmm... I am just not sure how well that particular AESTHETIC will work for me. And speaking of WHAT'S WORKING: Onions, mustard, catsup (not ketchup), lettuce, and perhaps a bit of Thousand Island on the side. The tomatoes are a bit TALKY. WHAT'S NOT WORKING: The little toothpick thing that is often found holding the sandwhich together, but I don't want to be too PRESCRIPTIVE here. And don't be afraid to KILL SOME CHARACTERS, I mean cows, to make your burger eating experience much more pleasant. You should also read some BELOVED (Morrison) because that will solve all of your burger eating difficulties.

P.S. WHAT'S REALLY AT STAKE HERE?

P.P.S. Perhaps you should give your audience (err... french fries) a few more HANDRAILS

P.P.P.S Kafka, Faulkner, Winterson, Hemingway, Hawthorne, Conrad

7:14 PM  
Blogger Britta Coleman said...

I am laughing out loud...oh, this is so painfully true!

8:07 AM  

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