You can only get burgers at Rub BBQ on Monday nights after 6 p.m. Every week they offer a special burger-of-the-week in addition to their Rub Burger, hamburger, and cheeseburger that are offered every Monday.
Last night I tried Rub BBQ's Vietnamese-inspired Banh Mi Burger ($9.25) featuring an oblong beef patty mixed with shallots, garlic, ground peanuts, fish sauce, and coconut milk, topped with shredded housemade Asian barbecued pork and slices of housemade paté, strips of pickled daikon and carrot, and cilantro, all piled in a spicy aioli-smeared baguette.
Of course, it was good. Can't go wrong with a savory, moderately juicy triple meatstuff stack topped with crunchy pickle shreds in a soft, toasted baguette. The baguette wasn't as light and shatteringly crispy as a typical banh mi baguette—more bready and dense, with a thicker, crunchy crust—but it complemented and held up to the filling well, and thankfully didn't result in backslide like the bagel burger. The burger had a tinge of heat, but like Law and Food said in their review, more spiciness would've been welcome.
If I hadn't devoured the burger so quickly, I'd probably have more to say about it. Unfortunately, my party of four waited a little over an hour for our order (they gave us some free cornbread in the meantime) and by the time the burgers came, we attacked them, probably forgetting to chew/breathe properly.
Having been to Rub BBQ five times before, mostly around 7 p.m., I'm sure that waiting over an hour for your food there is atypical. Nothing close to that wait has ever happened to me before. But for some reason, last night the restaurant went from fairly empty to swamped in between 7 p.m. and 7:15 p.m. when my party was seated, and a ton of those people ordered burgers. Even though my friends enjoyed the food—we shared the special burgers and burnt ends—they'll probably remember Rub as "the place with the really long wait," not "the place with delicious meat." (They comped our beverages in light of the wait.)
Next time I go to Rub BBQ for a burger, I'll try to get there before 7 to avoid potential kitchen implosion.
208 West 23rd Street, New York NY 10011 (map)