I broke the cardinal rule on this vacation.
I ate an all American food in a foreign country and expected to be impressed.
Americans don’t do everything well. We don’t have the greatest mass transit in the world. We are totally prudish on some things at which other countries barely bat an eye. But, we do a few things perfectly:
Baseball. Movies. Burgers.
So when I went to Burger Zaken in Amsterdam, I was just setting myself up for disappointment. To start off,the place is very nice – casual and bustling with both counter and waiter service and a straightforward menu filled with different burger options like Dutch beef, Kobe beef, chicken, and veggie. There are also a few salads and freshly made fries. come here looking for a casual meal – think jeans and sneakers.
It’s kind of awesome that the burgers here come dressed similarly to In-n-Out. Some things are universal, and special sauce is one of them. The burger is well sized but not overwhelming and the fries are also well portioned. The burger is…
Okay, at best. Mostly because the meat has to be cooked to medium. It is excellent beef – robust and really earthy. It tastes like it might be grass fed. However, that also means that it is less fatty and results in a slightly dry, bouncy burger. It’s too bad that it is packed so tightly, because the flavor really is excellent. The special sauce is tart, tangy, and creamy, but it isn’t enough to save the burger or the worst bun in the history of mankind. The bun is dry, leaned, and so hard that I almost chipped a tooth whilst trying to eat it. It was an okay burger but a better bun would have really improved it. Luckily, the veggies were all fresh and vibrant. It still isn’t something for which I would return.
Fries with mayonnaise is perhaps the greatest invention since the wheel.
Sadly, this burger place is not where it’s at. It’s cheap and serviceable, but it can’t hold a candle to most burgers I am used to.
But that’s okay. Because the fries here often taste like soggy salt licks, and I would currently crawl over broken glass for just one of Burger Zaken’s frites.