During a recent trip to New York, we heard about a Japan-inspired hamburger restaurant that’s popular with the locals called Bento Burger.
When we say Japan-inspired hamburger, we don’t just mean things like teriyaki sauce or ramen noodle buns (though Kobe Beef and Japanese Hambuugu are available). As the name suggests, Bento Burger arranges its hamburgers on bento box-inspired platters along with a variety of toppings, which customers may dress their burger with or enjoy separately.
The bentos also come loaded with your choice of 3 Japan-inspired side dishes such as sweet potato fries, tempura onion rings, sesame noodles, and grilled vegetables in miso sauce.
The menu boasts a variety of burgers – including Portobello and Garden Vegetable for you vegetarians – all of which may be cooked to your liking and come with Japanese pickles, mango slaw and ‘Bento chips.’
I went with the orthodox American beef hamburger cooked medium-rare and was not disappointed: the patty was juicy, yet delicate in flavor, and I would have to say this is the best burger I’ve had during my stay in New York and my previous destination of Los Angeles.
With a Blade Runner motif interior and an exterior molded on a Tokyo back alley, the colorful atmosphere of the restaurant also lends to the uniqueness of the Bento Burger experience. The 3 beautiful young ladies working behind the counter didn’t hurt either.
To be honest, I wasn’t expecting anything more than a run-of-the-mill hamburger served in a novel way. However after one bento-bite I had no doubts as to why this restaurant holds a strong reputation among New Yorkers.