Sunday, May 24, 2015

Ketchup 9.5 out of 10

Let me start his blog with this....holy moly, what a freaking huge burger. Now that I got this out, lets review our next Burgergeeks burger challenge. We'd been contacted by the owner to see if he is right that he has the best burger in Jacksonville. Well, lets see if he does. First impression was that we loved the menu, many choices when it comes to the burger and also as I call the 'wow' factor. Burgers that you normally don't see as a combo like a burger with shrimp, whhhattttt?? OK, this will be interesting. So, for myself I thought I'll go for the the big one, the "Andy Altee" which is two 8oz patties, 3 slices of cheese, and 6 slices of bacon. Bring it on. As you can see from the picture, they brought it on. As always, I ordered mine cooked medium and with fries.  I saw that they also had chili and with me spending a lot of time in TEXAS and loving chili (and I happen to make one kick ass chili myself) I had to order that too.  More on that later.  So, first thing I check was if the burger was cooked correctly and it was.  
Right on the money as you can see from the picture when I cut it open.  The size of this thing is amazing, just mind blowing.  Now the next thing I do is taste the meat by itself to see how the seasoning is and man is it good. Yeah, someone took some time with this meat.  It had a great taste to it. Well seasoned and very juicy when I tasted it.  I have to give them so much credit for their bacon as well.  Those were not some little strings of bacon that you get in so many restaurants in town.  Oh no, these were some real thick slices of bacon and perfectly cooked.  Not greasy and very crispy.  I'm getting more and more the feeling those cooks in there know what they were doing.  I'm still amazed how big this burger was.  Let me go on with the cheese and the entire thing.  It all fitted perfectly together.  Even the bun was a great tasting bread and what not to frufru as so many other places try to make.  Was simple and right to the point being a hamburger bun and not to forget, to cover this massive amount of food and keeping it together.  Now for the lettuce I wasn't to impressed about it, but to me that was just minor and didn't effect the score in my mind.  I was after the cow sorte say and man oh man did they put a good part of this cow on there.
Yeah Chic-fil-A you lost with this competition on eating more chicken. I had to add another picture when I cut it open so you all can see what this burger looks like cut open.  I mean look at that thing.  I don't think the picture does it even justice. Let me also add this, I'm not a tiny guy and I love food and I know how to eat, but I could not finish this monster.  I pretty much took another meal with me home which I loved.  Let me say this that you better bring some hunger when you order that one from the menu.  I was very pleased with this hamburger and after the last two burger attempts we reviewed I'm glad we went to taste this one.  
Now on a side note let me give a quick review on the fries and chili.  I can't stand it when you get rubbery fries drenched in greasy like we have been served in a few restaurants.  Again, what a great job on the fries, well cooked, no rubbery feel, not greasy and very crispy.  Now the chili, my hats off, finally some restaurant in Jax that knows how to make chili.  You can get it with beans or without, of course I had to get it without.  It was fantastic.  Whoever came up with that recipe knows how to make chili and how to cook it.  So again my hat is off.  
So in my humble opinion, this burger from Ketchup gets a 10 out of 10 from me.  Would I drive to Mayport to get this burger? I would have to say not only yes, but Hell Yes!  Well worth it.  Also great atmosphere and the staff was friendly and very attentive.  Not to forget you can bring your dog to sit outside and they feed them too, which I got a kick out off and love that.
After we completed our review and paid our bill, we notified the owner and Chef Ace French that we were there. I was very impressed how concerned he was what we felt about the burger. It really came through that he is really proud of the food he serves there and told us how he gets up at 6 in the morning just to get the meat ready and mixed.  Now this shows me how restaurants should care what they give to their customers.  For sure he does.  In this place they just don't mass produce their food and care what they give you.  That was my impression.  So happy to see that after some other reviews we had and just being treated like the next number.  I can't wait to go back and taste some of the other burgers or even other items on their menu.  If they are as good as this, then man oh man I have to drive to Mayport often.  I highly recommend this restaurant if you want a burger that is out of the norm in our town.  Now the question is, who can out do them.  We have some more restaurants to review in the coming months......the challenge continues........
The BurgerMeister


Do you like really good burgers? Then I think we found a place for you. Our latest burger review brought us to Ketchup, located at 2434 Mayport Road. This was a lunchtime visit and I brought my appetite (I was starving). The first thing I noticed was that the burger menu was impressive. I had to step back and ponder which burger I wanted to try. There were more creative combinations here than any other place we've visited so far: 14 different 8 oz. burgers and one 16 oz. behemoth called the Andy Altee. Styles ranged from the Classic burger with lettuce, tomato and onion, to the Harley burger topped with pulled pork and melted Jack cheese, to the Wooten burger with fried oysters, wasabi cream sauce and pepper jack cheese. And if you prefer, each combination can be ordered on chicken instead of beef. I settled on the Avery, which is a half pound burger topped with fried onion straws, sautéed Vidalia onions and melted smoked Gouda. I ordered fries as my included side, and added a bowl of their homemade chili with beans. When my burger arrived, my jaw dropped. This thing was HUGE. The burger was cooked to medium as ordered. The burger patty was flavorful and juicy with a hint of the applewood smoked bacon. The bun was fresh and the onion toppings were in ample supply. I love onions but I did remove some of the topping to suite my taste and to not drown out the flavor of the rest of the ingredients. I truly enjoyed this burger. The fries were perfectly cooked and served hot. The chili was very good as well. I ordered mine with beans, while my counterpart prefers his without. Ketchup makes a batch of each so take your pick. The chili comes topped with shredded cheddar cheese and sliced onions (I think diced would be better so they mix in easier). Between the huge burger, mound of French fries, and the chili I couldn't finish everything, so I took my chili home to enjoy the next day. I don't think anyone goes home hungry after eating at Ketchup.

I rated my Avery burger as follows: 3 points for the fresh-ground black angus and bacon patty, 2 points for the bun, 3 points for the generous toppings, plus a well-deserved "wow factor" point for such a massive, tasty burger. My overall individual rating: 9. I will definately go back to try some of the other creative burger combinations. I also want to try the housemade hotdogs and deserts. Ketchup is the real deal.

The Burgernator

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