I love my new home in South Florida. The weather is awesome, the lifestyle is fantastic and even the food is good. But I do really miss my friends.
Being 1,300 miles apart from all my friends in Jersey has been rough, particularly being away from those who I have shared my best foodie memories with.
One of those folks who has been in my thoughts a lot lately is my friend Christine Nunn, who recently had to close her restaurant, Picnic, as another casualty of the usual economic malaise hitting everyone nowadays. Christine has instead chosen to focus on her catering business, which is still doing well.
While Picnic got incredible reviews, and the food was utterly phenomenal the financials of the place did not work out. Sometimes this happens when restaurants get too ambitious, and indeed this was without question one of the most ambitious restaurants I had ever seen in New Jersey.
Picnic was a wonderful place while it lasted, and I considered it the best restaurant in all of Bergen County. I was extremely privileged to be able to document the start-up of the restaurant and to come in for periodic visits, and get access to the kitchen where I probably shot the best food photos I’ve ever taken in my entire life.
Today while I was out shopping, I thought about Christine, her restaurant and all the good times we had.
While I was in the midst of my thought processes, I got the whiff of grilled beef, probably wafting out of a fast food restaurant near the supermarket. Hamburgers. Oh God, I wanted a hamburger, right then, right now.
The smell of burgers kicked off a taste memory in my synapses.
And then I remembered the Hamburger that was meant to end all hamburgers, the Burger Mountain. I’ve had posts about all sorts of hamburgers on Off the Broiler over the years, but none got anywhere near as much attention as that thing that Christine created.
People were emailing me (and Christine) from all over the world where they could get one, and where it was served.
The thing is, we only did that burger once, as a total goof. At her restaurant, a less complicated version was served once or twice, but it was a crazy expensive and labor intensive.
I could never attempt to make anything as sophisticated as Burger Mountain. I don’t have the culinary training like she does. But I could make a really freaking big hamburger that would taste good. Click on the “Read the rest of this entry” link below for more.