Thursday, September 22, 2011

Willamette Burger Company (Part 2)

(NOTE: Willamette Burger company is closed. They moved to a spot on Fairgrounds Road in Salem for a few months before closing.)

(Original Review -- September 2011)
(Final Review -- April 2012)

After learning that Willamette Burger Company would be closing its Broadway St. NE location effective October 1, I had to go back one last time to see what they could bring to the table.

Their last special, the Bruschetta Burger
I ordered their Veggie Burger ($8): "our proprietary blend of beans, grains, spices and veggies, pattied and topped with roasted red peppers, caramelized onions, & avocado spread, lettuce & tomato." I also had a basket of their homemade tots with a side of their WBC fry sauce ($3).

Veggie burger (Willamette Burger Company)
WBC's house-made tots
WBC fry sauce
I'm very happy that this was my last meal at WBC. The delicate veggie patty packed wonderful flavor without overpowering the condiments. The diced roasted red peppers and silky caramelized onions each added a lovely dimension to the burger. But in the end, it was the avocado spread that ultimately won me over. The creamy avocado sucker-punched my palate with some lime -- one of the more welcome sucker punches I've taken. As always, their bun is made in-house, and was awesome as usual. It's fluffy, yet firm enough to hold that burger in place. I had condiments ready just in case, but I didn't need them.

The tots were large and quite possibly the best I've ever had. A crispy golden brown on the outside with a pillowy inside. The shot of black pepper the potatoes got just put it over the top. Amazing how that peppery bite can make all the difference. The fry sauce was delicious...creamy and garlicky. If I had a guess, I'd say the fry sauce had garlic, ketchup, and mayonnaise. I would imagine the tots being a bit salty for some people, but I'd rather have it overseasoned than bland.

If you're in Oregon -- especially the Salem area -- be sure to check out Willamette Burger Company before they close effective October 1, 2011. Hopefully it's just a temporary shutdown, and perhaps we can persuade them to sell their burgers at Willamette Noodle Company (owned by the same people) while a space for WBC hopefully pops up. Obviously, my rating increases, and what a way for WBC to go out.

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