I think we're all used to Reality Check reviews being pretty bad, because fast food is usually, at best, uneventful. But I'm going to switch it up today. Culver's new Colby Jack Pub Burger ($4.99) is a great fast food burger.
If you're lucky enough to live in an area with Culver's, then you're probably already aware that the quality of the food is leaps and bounds above other fast food joints. So I was expecting the pub burger to be pretty good, and in fact I really liked some of the components that differed from the normal butter burger.
Ditching American cheese for a stringy Colby Jack elevates the burger (if only metaphorically) above your typical cheeseburger. There's so much of it that it smooshes out the sides of the burger, just the way I like it.
They call the bun a supper club bun, and I have no idea what that means. I've been to lots of supper clubs, and haven't seen a bun like this at any of them. Regardless, I love the bun. It's much more substantial than the regular butter burger bun, and it's topped with a smattering of sesame seeds, poppyseeds, and onion bits. That substaintial bun came in handy when I picked up the burger and butter dripped out. This was greasy, but in a good way.
Beef patties are standard Culver's, meaning they're never frozen and have a substantial smash-method crust. The beef does dry out a bit, but the butter and, in this case, pepper mayo go a long way to keeping it all lubed up. I much prefered the mayo to the drizzle of A1 steak sauce that's also on the burger, but if you like that stuff, then you'll enjoy this. Luckily, it wasn't too pronounced.
The one thing that gets lost on this burger is the crispy onions. They're more like French's fried onions in a can than pub-style onion strings. Putting them under the patties and in the mayo and A1 didn't help the matter, either.
Photos show this hefty burger served with a side of cheese curds, so I opted for those over fries. I'm not really sure if cheese curds are a pub staple, but how can anyone go wrong with fried cheese? Definitely take the suggestion; it's worth the extra $1 to upgrade your combo.
About the author: Lacey Muszynski is an editor, freelance writer and restaurant reviewer from Milwaukee, WI. When she's not burgerblogging on AHT, she might be updating her food blog, making fun of the Food Network, or wondering what her art degree has to do with all of this. Her idols growing up included Martin Yan, Chairman Kaga, and whoever was on Great Chefs, Great Cities that day.