Finally – New York’s Best Burger

Making money in New York appears to be pretty high on everyone’s agenda and the variety of mechanisms for doing so is as wide as Manhattan is long. I’m not just talking about the shops and restaurants, or Wall Street trading or the Broadway shows. New Yorkers are much more creative than that.

How about taking all the crappy books you have on your shelves and laying them out on the street outside with a handwritten sign declaring them all to be 50% reduced? Ridiculous?

Not in New York, it’s as common as pigeons by a hot dog stand.

How about caging up all the cats in your neighbourhood and displaying them on Broadway declaring yourself to be a charity for protecting the stray feline?

Maybe that was legitimate….you just can’t tell half the time.

Selling bottles of water by the side of the road for a dollar? You can get 24 for $4 in a shop. With no overheads that’s a tidy profit margin.

Selling bike hire, horse drawn carriages, cheap tickets…

Wishes!?

My wish is for a really great burger for less than five dollars.  Can such a thing be truly achieved? Here it is finally…

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… and here is its story.

Yesterday I had the idea that I might explore the Upper East Side and chance upon a burger joint on the way. The Upper East Side is the proper ‘moneyed’ bit where the beauty and class of the apartments in no way reflect the beauty and class of the occupants. They must have money though. The place reeks of it.

It also has some history though and lots of museums like the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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Yes that’s the hot dog stands outside it. What else would I take a picture of?

Oh yes, my lunch.

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I know! It’s looks more like ‘behind of dog’ than hot dog. But it was great and I would rate it over the Gray’s Papaya efforts because the chilli is meatier, the sausage bigger and the woman serving it is the most efficient and pleasant street seller I have come across.

As to the history the Upper East Side has, in my humble opinion, one of the most significant historical residences in American cinema history.

The Marx brothers’ first New York pad.

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Look closely you can almost see them keeking out.

Anyway – I was the one who looked like a comedian wandering around the most expensive part of New York for a cheap burger so I had to abandon the search and leave it for the morning. Besides someone with a mate high up in the mayor’s office heard there was a ‘poor person’ in the neighborhood and asked them to send a patrol car to check it out.

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After a night in the precinct cells 😉  I woke up with a cunning plan. The street book sellers had got me to thinking about being more creative in my efforts and also, interestingly enough, to locating the ‘biggest book shop in the world’.

The interweb said this was to be found on 5th Avenue and I did indeed locate said store.

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Yeah right! This was on the way there but I took the picture to remind me how big I wanted my burger to be.

The ‘biggest book store’ has fewer books in it than the bloke on West 58th Street has on the bedside table he displays every morning on the sidewalk.

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In my disappointment I could think of only one consolation.

Food.

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This place http://www.potbelly.com is charming. It is like Subway with class. It is pleasant to sit in, the staff are friendly and welcoming. The soup and sandwiches are great.

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For $10.

But the burger for $5 was looking like a forlorn hope. There was only one thing for it.

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Two top quality beef patties and a lump of Yellow American Cheese purchased here for $7.

One giant sesame bun from http://www.gristedes.com at 89 cents and the rest from my fridge.

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Cooked medium rare I can truly declare that this was the best burger I have had in New York and it could only have cost me $5 because I still have one left and most of the cheese.

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Now do you reckon I should get a small BBQ and open up a stall on the street?

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