Dining Out Magazine

Roadster’s 15th Anniversary Burger: The Route 66

By Nogarlicnoonions @nogarlicnoonion
Rating: 83/100

Welcoming:8/10

Menu Choices: 9/10

Food Presentation: 8/10

Food Temperature: 9/10

Food Taste: 17/20

Service: 9/10

Ambiance/Music: 8/10

Architecture/Interior: 8/10

Air Quality: 3/10

Total: 83/100

Most of us have been hearing the buzz around the new burger launched by Roadster Diner in celebration of their 15th anniversary. “A must try” almost everyone says. I was super intrigued to try it of course. Here I am, at the Downtown Beirut branch – and all I wanted was this to see, taste, smell, and inspect… this new burger called “The Route 66″.

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I was welcomed at the door, the usual Roadster Diner way. It was 1pm and the place was packed. I then followed a waiter to the first floor, where I decided to sit on my own at the bar. Me, myself and the mirror up front just eagerly waiting to make eye contact with anyone who can provide me with this new creation.You can’t miss knowing that there’s a new burger in-house. Although it’s not added to the menu, this new creation is plastered everywhere. Printed on the placemats in front of you, the image of the large platter makes your mouth water from the very first second.Roadster_Diner_Route66_R66_Burger17The meal combination:The sauces described:
  • Sour herbs special dip: (feta cheese, mayonnaise, parsley, garlic, ketchup, fresh cream). The sour herbs dip is more fatty than the R66 burger itself,  it contains too much mayonnaise, too much garlic as well as has a sour taste from too much lemon
  • R66 burger sauce: (feta cheese, mayonnaise, garlic, parsley, mint, ketchup). This sauce is lighter with more cheese and a stronger taste

Don’t presume things and don’t compare it with any of Roadster’s burgers already tasted. The Route 66 is simply new on all fronts.

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The portrait of the R66 burger:One bite after the other, a love story begins, between a food aficionado and a burger. A soft tender bun, filled with air bubbles, covered with two kinds of sesame seeds melts under your teeth, followed by the little crunch of sweet cucumber pickles, a thin green layer of lettuce, followed by a slice of tomato which adds the needed freshness and crunch to this colorful tower. The tomato slice makes the burger stay close to Lebanese traditions. A thick piece of melted cheddar cheese over the juicy ground beef looks great and tastes good. Now comes time to introduce the meat to your taste buds…“Taste buds, meet the new 250g meat,” a thick, very well cooked piece of meat that is juicy at the same time. This kind of juiciness is usually enjoyed when the meat is medium cooked, but here, in a well done cooked meat, the fat dissipating from the inside adding the adequate flavor. Grilled on the outside, a slight charcoal taste is just the cherry on top. All of this wouldn’t have been special if not embraced with the new and unique R66 sauce. A sauce, or let’s say a scientific mix where Mediterranean cheese (feta), a local treasure (garlic), a burger must have (ketchup), a smooth flavoring (mayonnaise) and a fine added touch (parsley and mint) are mixed all together to elevate Route66 to a level higher than any other burger on the menu.
In my opinion, the new Route66 is something you should try.
Roadster_Diner_Route66_R66_Burger22How I would rate it:
  • Freshness of the ingredients (10) = 9
  • Vegetables freshness and crunch (10) = 10
  • Proportionality of the ingredients (10) = 10
  • Sauce taste (20) = 17
  • Meat quality and taste (20) = 15
  • Meat cooking (10) = 7
  • Overall Creativity (10) = 10
  • Bun overall feel and taste (20) = 19
  • Portion size (10) = 10
  • Price/quality ratio (10) = 9
  • Meat Cold test (10) = 2
  • Fries on the side (10) = 8
  • Overall taste (50) = 40
The Overall Grade = 166/200The cold test:Leaving the meat to relax for thirty minutes, I tasted it afterwards. I expected it to taste the same. The heat and juiciness sometimes mask many points. Thirty minutes afterwards, I tasted the meat: It was too peppery, a strong and unpleasant salty flavor appeared, the meat texture became hard like a piece of mastic gum and the crunchy chunks of fat were squeaking under my teeth. The obvious part is the meat color which turned from brown to gray and the ground beef, that was breaking into chucks a few minutes ago, is now a hard thick piece of steak.Roadster_Diner_Route66_R66_Burger24
The final verdict: I enjoyed the new Route66 and I surely recommend you all try it. It is one of the tastiest and most generous burgers I’ve had in a diner in Lebanon. Let’s crown it as the best “Chain” burger especially for its new thick 250g meat, the biggest available on the market today. The new bun which has drastically been upgraded to compete with others on the market, is a must try. The fries are nice, it reminded me of the ones served in Paris. Unpeeled, crunchy on the sides and perfectly seasoned.
I couldn’t but pamper myself with some dessert to complete my experience: Roadsters Profiteroles: 11,000 L.L
  • Puff pastry stuffed with vanilla ice cream, topped with hot chocolate and almonds
  • A tasty chocolate sauce
  • Crunchy almonds add a fine flavor
  • The ice cream, commercial and a bit too sweet – but it’s acceptable
  • The profiterole dough is thick and fresh
  • A generous mountain of five balls
  • For 11,000L.L, it is just great

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Today’s experience made me smile and leave Roadster a happy man. Everything was good: The welcoming, Robin my professional waiter whom I salute, the speed of service, portion size served, the generosity and taste… I would definitely be coming back for it again… hopefully before they remove it from their menu.

Some Definitions:

  • U.S Route 66, also known as the Will Rogers Highway and colloquially known as the Main Street of America or the Mother Road, was one of the original highways within the U.S Highway System. Route 66 was established on November 11, 1926—with road signs erected the following year.The highway, which became one of the most famous roads in America, originally ran from Chicago, Illinois, through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona before ending at Santa Monica, California, covering a total of 3,940 km. It was recognized in popular culture by both a hit song and the Route 66 television show in the 1960s.
  • Feta Cheese is a brined curd cheese traditionally made in Greece. Feta is a crumbly aged cheese, commonly produced in blocks, and has a slightly grainy texture. It is used as a table cheese, as well as in salads, pastries and in baking, or served with some olive oil or olives and sprinkled with aromatic herbs such as oregano. It can also be served cooked or grilled, as part of a sandwich, in omelettes, or as a salty alternative to other cheeses in a variety of dishes.
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