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The Burger Special at Má Pêche

For its inaugural Burger Week, Eater.com asked five restaurants that don’t ordinarily serve burgers to put a special burger on their menus.

For the record, the participating restaurants were Chinatown Brasserie, Kin Shop, Maialino, SHO Shaun Hergatt, and Má Pêche. All five chefs did a great job (or so it seems from the descriptions) of inventing a burger that looks like it belongs on their respective menus.

Most of the restaurants are offering the new burgers only at lunch, and only through the end of next week. They all sound enticing, but there’s not enough time—especially at lunch—for me to get to them all.

Chinatown Brasserie’s Peking Duck Burger was the one I craved the most, but Má Pêche’s Lemongrass–Chili Butter Burger was the most conveniently located, so I tried that one. The proceeds are being donated to Edible Schoolyard, a fact mentioned in the Eater post, but not on the menu. The price was $16, typical these days for a custom blend burger in Manhattan.

The beef is a Pat LaFrieda blend (aren’t they all?) of chuck and short rib, with a lower fat content than some LaFrieda blends. Eater documented the preparation and ingredients in stunning detail (which means I don’t have to). Chef Tien Ho’s Asian-accented condiments left a slightly bitter aftertaste, making it a very good, but not great, addition to the burger pantheon.

Incidentally, the restaurant was packed at 1:00 p.m., the busiest I have ever seen it.

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