Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Eat It - Burger & Beer Joint, 1766 Bay Rd., Miami Beach, FL (305)672-3287


So, I have a few things to nitpick before I go into reviewing the dining experience at this new restaurant near the Jetsons Publix (in the former, short-lived Uzo's building) and Purdy Lounge.

First of all, the matchbooks, though I love the fact that they have them, erroneously indicate the restaurant's address as 1766 Bay Rd., South Beach, FL. This (A) is where South Beach, FL is -

That's about as close to Miami Beach as Havana. They, of course, mean the neighborhood of South Beach in Miami Beach, but you shouldn't write your address like that unless you want your mail sent to Vero Beach. We all know you're trying to be all cool so the tourists know you're on South Beach. I think most people who live here have had friends say "oh, cool, you live in Miami Beach. Is that anywhere near South Beach?"

The other insignificant thing about which I choose to make a big deal is that the phone number is written "305.672.EATS." All that does is make it harder to dial the number. It won't help people remember it. Everyone can remember every one of their friends' home numbers from 1st grade but they don' t know their girlfriends' phone numbers today. And all the people with Blackberries are cursing you since they have to say in their heads "ok, ABC is 2, DEF is 3, 3!..."

The last complaint, and it's more significant, is that if you order a regular burger, the waiters default to the more expensive "kobe" burgers. That is tacky and unethical. It happened to me and to a friend of mine who was sitting at another table and who was served by another waiter. This suggests it comes from the top. That leaves a sour taste in my mouth, even though other than that, the service was excellent and the food, delicious. But hey, that's why you read whiny online restaurant reviews.

Let's stay on this automatic beef upgrade for one more paragraph. If there is a regular burger as the first option and a more expensive "kobe" burger (which of course is not actual kobe beef from Japan but rather high quality, fatty beef), and you order a burger, then which would you expect to receive? I can't see a scenario where I would expect the kobe burger. I was surprised when it arrived, since that's not what I had ordered. I did like the flair of the Japanese stamped into the bun, but I was still annoyed. Tacky.

The prices are reasonable, even when you are charged for the more expensive burger than the one you intended to order. You can have a pretty good meal and some beers for about 20 or 25 bucks. Really, the burger was delicious. I was forced to embarrass myself during my first bite and say "that is a tasty burger!" à la Jules from Pulp Fiction. I couldn't help it.

A nice surprise came after checking out the bathrooms. That sounds a little funny. Hold on. The men's room is very nice and clean, but the mirror is awkwardly placed over the urinals instead of the sinks, so if you want to check your teeth and hair after washing your hands, you have to walk over to where dudes might very well be peeing. Could have been better designed. The nice part is that, upon exiting the bathroom, I heard music coming from down the hall, where an attached bar is located. Pretty sweet. You don't even have to go outside to hit the next stop of the evening where you can wash down that kobe beef burger with another beer. Did that wrap things up ok? I know you're sort of supposed to do that when you're writing.

*Wait, wait! I almost missed an opportunity to criticize the restaurant that everyone (worth a damn) loves to hate! Barton G, of course. I could see Barton G doing something similar to the "kobe switcheroo." They would probably look at you in disgust after you ordered the plain old burger and say "you mean the kobe burger, right?" But they'd be called "Kobe Samurai Sliders" and they would arrive skewered on a real samurai sword. Then when you asked the waiter how to eat the burgers without cutting off your fingers, he would say "you've obviously never trained with Hattori Hanzo in Japan," and then spit in your cocktail and say "that's for free." Then he'd add an 18% gratuity for bothering him while he's trying to, uh, serve food to people at a restaurant. He's got clubbing to do, people!

Man, that felt good. I think this post is a lot better now that I added the part about Barton G. Which I hate.


Anonymous said...

Hi Chris:

I'm a huge burger fan so was very interested in your blog item. But the Barton G. thing through me off -- it is a total cheap shot. Barton G. is my fave restaurant and I have been going there for like six years and they don't have burgers on the menu. None of the waiters have ever tried to tell me to have something more expensive, even when I've been not very hungry and just ordered soup or an appetizer as my dinner. Just thought that post needed a little balance.

A non-hater

Colin said...

Hey Anonymous (if that's even your real name), who's Chris? And I think you mean "threw" me off. And how are my comments a "cheap shot?" Is it because I'm picking on a poor, defenseless organization? Barton Weiss is welcome to post a comment about a patently satirical piece. The whole Barton G thing was a hypothetical scenario that involved generous helpings of hyperbole. That's why I used a lot of the conditional tense. [That's when one uses "would"] It's a joke. I had an awful experience when I ate there and I mention Barton G in probably 40% of my restaurant reviews. Kind of a running theme.

RidiQlis said...

Awesome review!

Colin said...

Thanks RidiQlis!

Anonymous said...

yo chris!
love ur zany food reviews. I'd like to hire u to write for a hip style/culture blog. what say u?

Colin said...

Do you mean "Colin?" I'm Colin. Chris doesn't work here anymore. If you'd like to email me, I can be reached at colinohiggins@gmail.com.

If you ask me to meet you in a dark alley, I will assume that you are either a representative of Barton G, Barton Weiss himself, or an angry Irishman sent to neutralize my powerful anti-Waxy's movement.