Wednesday, April 27, 2016
Howling's Bar (Hood Burger)
In the immortal words of Michael Jordan from March 18, 1995:
After a hiatus of almost two years, we are delighted to announce that the Burger Friday crew have enlisted some help defence and are back bigger and better than ever. Such a glorious return to the spotlight needed to be accompanied by a burger to match (MJ played his first game back in Indiana for those playing at home) – so we wandered up the terrace to Howling’s Bar to sample the pop-up Hood Burger which has set up shop at Howling’s Bar.
Howling’s Bar is located on the busy Hay Street in the Perth CBD and was opened after a rather expensive renovation of the facilities. The first few months for Howling’s Bar were tough as they copped some heavy criticism on the interweb for their menu. To their credit, they took all of this feedback on board and enlisted the help of the pop-up stall – Hood Burger – to offer patrons an array of burger treats (and pretty much nothing else). The end result is a dude mecca which satiates the need for quality affordable burgers in the Perth CBD.
The venue itself isn’t going to knock your socks off. It feels a lot like a University nightclub which gets opened up during the day. Although it appeared that no one told the DJ – the music choice was reminiscent of the R&B room at Room 99 in Geelong – Bump, Bump, Bump…. Baby If You Give It To Me…. Independent Women. First class tunes.
The best part was that we appeared to be served by Boobarella from The Simpsons.
But enough about the venue, we are here to talk about the burger which came in at $14 with bacon plus $5 for chips.
The burger itself was in the upper echelon of Perth burgers (not an overly great achievement) in that it did the simple things right.
The patty was one of the best we have tried – it was clearly hand-made and the chef achieved the perfect balance of the Maillard Reaction and keeping the inside of the patty to a juicy medium. Pretty much full marks for the patty.
In addition to this, the bacon was cooked perfectly and the cheese was cooked on the patty whilst it was on the grill.
The sauce combination was a simple yet very effective mustard and tomato sauce. This was perfectly balance and left us thinking whether we had wandered into a fancier version of Hungry Jack’s by mistake.
As for the salads – salads on a burger are a lot like Sacremento Kings point guard Rajon Rondo, when he focuses on facilitation and making his teammates around him better then he is an asset to any team. When he lets his ego get in the way and tries to go outside of his role – he is detrimental to the locker room. Luckily, the salads on the Hood Burger knew their role and complimented the other ingredients by cutting through the richness.
Now it is at this point that I feel I need to raise what is probably the most pressing issue in burger society at the moment – does avocado belong on a burger? Or maybe a better way to phrase that question is why would anyone in their right mind believe that avocado belongs on a burger? When I think about these people I am drawn to a quote from the Dark Knight:
“Some men just want to watch the world burn.”
For some reason, one of the top-up players we enlisted the help of was on the side of avocado. I am without words.
The chips were the subject of great debate. A number of the crew were disappointed that the chips were dry. My response to this is two-fold:
1. Who the hell wants a moist chip? Have you ever heard anyone say – “Oh yeah man those chips were so moist! I was in heaven. I love it when my chips are moist”.
2. Dry chips are more conducive to sauce – the jalapeno mayo offered with the chips copped some flack as well.
So the chips were marked down very heavily by one member which diminished the overall rating. But we welcome a diverse range of opinions to give you the most complete picture possible.
Overall, this burger is well and truly worth the short stroll to the venue. Given the criticism that Howling’s Bar has copped, it is hard not to draw similarities with Richmond Captain Trent Cotchin. Clearly he has a few things to work out in terms of his performance but some of his attributes are league leading and it is just a matter of time before he finds his groove and is a force to be reckoned with.
Score – 38.8