Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Best Burger in NYC Search: J.G. Melon

 J.G. Melon
1291 Third Ave (cross street: 74th St.)
Burger: The J.G. Melon Bacon Cheeseburger ($9.50) 

As a tourist or New Yorker alike, it is more than likely that you've been educated by many on what they deem to be the "best burger in NYC." Obviously, that's Burger Bedlam's main objective here, but you and we both know, its all subjective. We set out on our journey for burger judgment with that in mind, its a matter of opinion. Its apparent that, depending on a variety of factors, one can make the argument for or against some of the many options you have in Manhattan and the surrounding boroughs. It's probable that burger lovers in the area have more often than not mentioned J.G. Melon among the best. It's easy to see why, especially with the restaurant's devotion to grilling up fresh, thick and juicy meat. So, on a mission to digest the best, we made our way to the notorious pub on the Upper East Side, dining amongst preppies and popped collars.

Our Expectations: The J.G. Melon Bacon Cheeseburger. Why go for the basic burger when they have bacon and cheese ready and waiting? Not to mention the bacon here is thick and crispy, a bacon lover's dream. Most J.G. Melon enthusiasts recommend the cheeseburger, we at Burger Bedlam say go all the way. With a thick, eight ounce patty, standard onions, lettuce and tomato, the bacon and American cheese add to this burger's "oomph" factor. Served on a soft white roll, you couldn't really get any more American than that.

The Burger

Meat: You want freshness from a patty? Head to J.G. Melon. The ground beef stands out as a freshly done and well-cooked heifer. Yeah, we said heifer. That's a female cow. Still, truth be told, the seasoning department has some work to do. Other burger destination's meat can claim true flavor, J.G. Melon is a bit of a letdown in the area. Some may argue for freshness over flavor, but then again, they don't write this blog! We value both here at Burger Bedlam, and aren't satisfied without a complete combination.

Toppings: Bacon, bacon, bacon...we love bacon. And if you're looking for some serendipitous bacon, look no further. To date, we haven't found a burger joint that can provide us with better cured pork. Marry that with the perfect execution of melted American cheese and you've got a winning combination of toppings. Throw on a few pickles, some raw onion, crisp fresh lettuce and a tomato, if you so desire, and you're sittin' pretty.

Bun: We've come to find that its hard to mess up the bun. Now we're not gonna go ahead and put J.G. Melon in the "failed" category, but it needs some work. A bit dry, adding nothing to the taste or texture of the burger as a whole, the bun left us high and, um, dry. If you want the crown of best NYC burger, you gotta step up your game!

Bedlam's J.G. Melon

Meat (45): Fresh, yes. Flavorful, no. A great amount of juiciness and tender texture, but how 'bout some seasoning maestro?

Toppings (22):
Bacon bliss, choice cheese and fresh vegetables make us happy. We couldn't ask for a better bunch.

Bun (20):
Too dry and not much added value. A disappointment all around.

87 out of 100


  1. Its a sad day for the crown but honesty reigns here. Always enjoy the reviews, detailed and incisive. Perfect companion for my burger habit, less legwork for me. Thanks! Keep em coming.

  2. You should check out Harriet's on the Upper West Side. Small place, delicious burger.

  3. Just ate there for the first time this past weekend, and oddly enough my first comment was how good the bun was. It was moist and fresh with a touch of sweetness... may have been potato bread. Reminded me of a house-made donut hot off the press. Overall the burger was incredible, but head-to-head I'd be likely to pick a high end grilled burger over a flat-top patty like this.