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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Thermidor's Mini Burger

Posted By on Tue, Jul 27, 2010 at 7:30 AM

click to enlarge Little burger with Tillamook cheddar, caramelized onions, and crispy wedged potatoes ($6). - JOHN BIRDSALL
  • John Birdsall
  • Little burger with Tillamook cheddar, caramelized onions, and crispy wedged potatoes ($6).
Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Maybe all the opening press did Thermidor a disservice. Yeah, the place pays thematic homage to an age accessorized with maxi skirts, frozen daiquiris, and a Craig Claiborne notion of Hamptons posh, but Bruce Binn's menu is hardly a prop for novelty dining.

Yesterday we arrived on the back end of Thermidor's 2 p.m. cutoff for lunch, which launched last week at the six-week-old restaurant. The bar's après-lunch menu offers up oysters, a Caesar, and a mini version of Thermidor's burger. Binn ― silvery and towering, in an Eric Ripert sort of way ― seemed to be stressing whether a couple of Pac Heights ladies at an outside table had liked the food.

If they ordered the burger, they'd have been fools not to.

While designers of bistro burgers all over town obsess over the meat, Binn's bilevel patty emphasizes buttery support: an infrastructure of toasted, triple-decker brioche, and a shiny clot of deeply caramelized onions. With darkly roasted steak fries that tasted vaguely of bacon fat but intensely of potato, Thermidor's burger ― even toy size ― is no joke.

Thermidor: 8 Mint Plaza (at Fifth St.), 896-6500.

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