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What's the Buzz in Burgers?
By Larry Mogelonsky
In the last decade, we’ve witnessed incredible strides in nutritional food offerings in the supermarket and in restaurants. Going in the complete opposite direction is the burger. With ample amounts of meat, cheese and grease, burgers have never been synonymous with healthy snack foods.
Eating healthy is crucial, but so is indulgence. Instead of trying to fit a circle in the square peg, a new pedigree of burger joints aims to fit a humungous circle in an even bigger circular peg. These new restaurants treat the burger as the emblem of decadence, as if to say, “If you are going to cheat on your diet, cheat in style and cheat with us.”
I was first clued into this during a recent visit to Los Angeles where a fellow Angelino ushered me to Umami Burger – ‘umami’ being the little-known fifth attribute of basic taste (after sweet, sour, salty and bitter), describing savory flavor notes. Simply put, one of the best burgers I’ve ever had, and with such a unique combination of toppings. One should expect as much coming from the regional birthplace of McDonald’s, In-N-Out Burger and, you could argue, our modernized interpretation of fast food burgers around the world.
Upon returning to Toronto to extol my recent discovery, I realized the umami craze wasn’t exclusive to SoCal. We now have two restaurants within a ten minute drive from my office jockeying for position as the most decadent and artery-clogging in the city – The Burger’s Priest and Holy Chuck. To give you a mental picture, when I visited the latter, I had a double bacon cheeseburger with the buns replaced by grilled cheese sandwiches and topped off with a peanut butter and jelly milkshake. I’m still working off the calories.
Now turn the tables on your own menu. Reviewing your traditional hamburger and revamping this perennial favorite is neither complex nor costly. Think extremes – your F&B choices should either air towards incredibly healthy or wholly indulgent. And this doesn’t even have to start and stop with burgers. Many of these changes are so easy that you could probably develop an action plan within 24 hours. So, in no particular order, here are some of my suggestions.
Alas, you’re not going to win any Weight Watchers® awards for these activities, but you will have fun, raise your profile and, hopefully, build revenues as well.
About Larry Mogelonsky
Larry Mogelonsky (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the president and founder of LMA Communications Inc. (www.lma.ca), an award-winning, full service communications agency focused on the hospitality industry (est. 1991). Larry is also the developer of Inn at a Glance hospitality software. As a recognized expert in marketing services, his experience encompasses Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts and Preferred Hotels & Resorts, as well as numerous independent properties throughout North America, Europe and Asia. Larry is a registered professional engineer, and received his MBA from McMaster University.
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