Burger & Barrel NYC Winepub: Brand New in Soho
We stopped by the just-opened Burger & Barrel NYC yesterday evening, fingers crossed, hopes high, appetites eager for meat. Located on Houston Street diagonally across from the Angelika Theater, Burger & Barrel is the latest from the team behind the high(ish)-end Soho standbys Lure Fishbar and Mercer Kitchen, as well as, in one configuration or another, Locanda Verde and Chinatown Brasserie. Nice pedigree, that. Anyway, Burger & Barrel is a cozy, comfy, handsome-looking American "winepub," designed to be a neighborhood stop-in spot with a variety of burgers–including a legitimate award winner–as the foundation of an interesting, crowd-pleasing menu. Needless to say, our expectations were high, especially after the warm and friendly greeting we received as we walked in the door. And, great news for Soho-goers who like to eat, Burger & Barrel, at least at this one meal, totally delivers.
We stuck with the basics on visit number one, and were pretty blown away by how good these burgers are. The Bash burger, for example, lived up to its billing as 2009's "Best Burger" winner at the New York Wine and Food Festival: the meat impossibly tender and juicy AND with plenty of beefy taste to stand up to the carmelized onion, bacon jam, pickles, and gooey cheese, all between a bun with enough bite to hold its own. All future "best burger in New York City" discussions will have to include this Burger & Barrel beauty.
Just to mix things up we also tried the Soho Burger & Barrel Chicken Burger, with almost equally happy results. Again, this thick grilled patty is super moist–and it really does, in fact, taste like chicken–and it's healthily, appropriately accompanied by lettuce, tomato and avocado on a seedy 7 grain bun. The fries are first-rate too, salty and crisp with loads of potato flavor. The veggie of the day was Brussels Sprouts with thick chunks of bacon, so of course we had to order that, and were amply rewarded with fresh, perfectly cooked bites with a generous scattering of fatty, smoky, sweet pieces of pig. Totally satisfying.
Yes it's only one visit, and we haven't even sampled the solid-sounding salads, the Roasted Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese, the Short Rib Ravioli, the Fried Chicken, the Sloppy Josh sandwich, or the Salty Peanut Butter Brownie Sundae, but Chef Josh Capon and his crew clearly are putting a lot of love into the mix back there in the kitchen. We will be back to Burger & Barrel in Soho, and often.
Burger & Barrel NYC Details
Burger & Barrel is located on West Houston between Mercer and Greene Streets and is open from 11:30 a.m. until 12:00 midnight on Sunday through Thursday, and until 2:00 a.m. on the weekends. Dinner service starts at 5:00 p.m. For more information and a look at the complete menu (when they fix the link) please see the Burger & Barrel website.