Reality Check

Reviews of fast food burgers and a look at how the real life version compares to the advertised beauty shot.

Reality Check: 'Merica Burger at Slater's 50/50

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[Photographs: Erin Jackson]

AHT recently announced July's burger of the month at Slater's 50/50: a quadruple hit of bacon dubbed the 'Merica burger. The mini chain is already known for their half beef, half bacon burgers (Damon reviewed one back in '09), but the 'Merica burger goes a step further, with a patty made from 100 percent ground bacon, and takes every available opportunity to pile on the pork. There's "bacon island" dressing, bacon cheese, and two strips of thick-cut bacon on top of the bacon patty, plus a sunny side up egg.

Like all Slater's burgers, the 'Merica is available in three sizes: 1/3 pound, 2/3 pound, and a full pound. I got the smallest size because collapsing in a parking lot with a massive heart attack really doesn't sound like much fun.

The bacon patty had a tasty layer of crust with a great crunchy texture, but the interior was surprisingly dry, especially since I ordered mine medium (it's only available medium, medium well, or well done). The end result is a patty with the flavor and texture of a hash brown: crisp on the outside, oily on the inside, and salty. Some of the toppings helped up the moisture factor, most notably the egg yolk and the sauce, but the bacon flavor in the cheese wasn't detectable and the burger badly needed tomato.

The egg also ended up making the burger taste even more like a breakfast sandwich (which was Damon's critique of the 50/50 patty), but the main reason it's a bust is all of that salt. Eating this burger was like munching on a salt-lick. I had two bites, and that was about a bite and a half too many.

The only saving grace of the 'Merica burger is the bacon island dressing. It's a bit like a more smoky, less tangy Thousand Island. Here's hoping Slater's adds it to their list of sauces after the 'Merica burger disappears. They've already got baconaise and bacon infused ketchup, so it would be right at home.

If the idea of a bacon burger intrigues you, you're better off making one at home with this Burger Lab recipe.

About the author: Erin Jackson is a food writer and photographer who is obsessed with discovering the best eats in San Diego. You can find all of her discoveries on her food blog EJeats.com. On Twitter, she's @ErinJax

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