Manhattan: Lure Fishbar's Lure Burger

Lure Fishbar's Lure BurgerLURE FISHBAR
Address: 142 Mercer Street (at Prince Street); SoHo, New York City [map]
Getting There: R/W trains to Prince Street Station; one block west of B'way
Phone: 212-431-7676
Short Order: A great In-N-Out–inspired burger from an unexpected place. Make sure to order the "Lure Burger"—not the regular cheeseburger
Want Fries With That? If they didn't come with the burger already, I'd recommend passing on them. OK but not great.
Cost: $14; cash and cards are accepted payment

Lure Fishbar's Lure Burger: Cross Section
A Catch: It's counterintuitive to order a burger at a seafood restaurant, but this one rewards stubborn landlubbers with a boatload of briny deliciousness.

We were skeptical when Eater columnist William Tigertt first trumpeted Lure Fishbar's burger as "the best burger downtown":

For my money, the best burger south of 14th Street is the Lure Burger at Lure Fishbar in SoHo. Basically, the Lure Burger is a well-executed restaurant interpretation of an In-N-Out burger. It’s pre-assembled with ketchup, mustard, pickles, shredded lettuce, and special sauce. The lettuce, tomatoes, and pickles are thinly sliced. It’s on a brioche, cut in half, and topped off with two thick cut onion rings hanging from bamboo toothpicks. It comes with classic thin-cut French fries with a trio of catsup, mustard, and mayo dipping sauces. It’s well-seasoned, fresh ground chuck, and unbelievably good. Myself and entire crew of guys from the restaurant walk across town and have it at least once a week.

First: A great burger from a seafood restaurant? Enough said.

Second: In-N-Out? I mean, come on. You can stop making comparisons to the vaunted Cali fast-food burger joint once the word brioche enters the picture and the price goes north of five bucks.

But ... but ...

This burger really is all that Mr. Tigertt describes. The one we had today was cooked to a perfect medium-rare; was juicy and flavorful with a loosely packed, pleasingly salty patty; and was sandwiched on a soft, pillowy brioche bun that hungrily soaked up the burger's juices.

My only complaint was that the sandwich comes pre-cut, even though that made it easier to get the juicy cross-section photo above. The bisecting of the burger seems to destabilze its structural integrity, making it easier for the patty and toppings to slip around within the bun. I feel I could have gotten a better handle on the sandwich had it been left whole.

And, oh yeah, one other issue: the price. At $14, it's pretty damn spendy. But it certainly beats many of the other "fancypants burgers" in its price range. Still, I definitely get the burger here again. Just on payday.

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