I am admittedly a bit of a burger fiend. You wouldn't know that, because it was something that belonged in my pre-Wolf life. It reared it's head most during my pregnancy where one of my number one cravings, whether I had morning sickness or not, was a lovely burger. At any time of day. TGI Fridays, Misty's Diner, Grill'd, Hungryjacks, even the much detested McDonalds. I'd try any pub burger, and even if it wasn't any good, try it again next time. I give burgers second chances. The combination of juicy beef, cheese, sauces, pickles and salads in between two halves of a bun is irresistible. Particularly good is a burger that has tomato and mayonnaise. There is something about that wet and messy combination that is just so good.
Can a food obsession be hereditary? I know my dad loved a good burger. At his best he was a tall and chubby fast food lover, a fast driver and generous gift giver. When my mum was at work or when he picked me up from school, he would drive us places for greasy food my mum would disapprove of very much. We bonded over dripping burgers and soggy fries. He always added lemonade to McDonalds chocolate milkshakes. It was his signature. I can't remember whether he grilled a good burger himself. There aren't enough barbecues in my childhood memory to say for sure. I years past I sometimes I ate a burger in memory of my father, wishing he were beside me enjoying himself too.
But as my focus post-Wolf has been on home cooked food and shedding baby weight, I haven't had a decent burger for ages. Until last week.
Behold, the best burger I've ever had. Ever.
There are a few bites out of it. I nearly didn't take a picture, I was so preoccupied with eating. It has everything: beef pattie, cheese, bacon, egg, tomato sauce, mayonnaise, tomato slices, shredded lettuce. Not eaten anywhere fancy. Just sitting on a bench on a large median strip in the middle of Albert Park.
Which means I could only have gotten this burger from Andrews Hamburgers. An institution. A legend. I wonder if my dad ever went here when he was younger. Walking around Albert Park trying to decide where to eat and then happening upon this much lauded little shop was a wonderful surprise but also bittersweet. I'd nearly forgotten about Andrews, a favourite of my favourite chef at my former workplace. Someone I adored completely but would probably never get to work with again. I did imagine him standing outside waiting for his order.
Josh loves a good burger almost as much as I do. It's a wonderful thing to be able to share a long-time vice. He's not big on chips though, so there are some areas where we disagree. In the background is the Albert Park Hotel. We could have eaten there, or grabbed an Andrews burger. Not a hard choice in retrospect.
Wolf too will become a burger aficionado in time. At the moment he enjoys the elements of a burger individually, not yet ready to experience all the flavours at once. But he would have gotten a taste for them in a the womb, so it probably won't be too long.
That Andrews Hamburger with the lot was the best burger I've ever eaten in my life. Eating it I think I remembered every burger I'd ever eaten, as though I'd died and my life was flashing before my eyes, only in burger related terms. That sounds incredibly pathetic, I know, but like so many other kinds of foods, burgers have left an indelible stain on the fabric of my life.
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