If you have been out to Sag Harbor, Long Island, you are probably quite familiar with LT Burger, renowned chef Laurent Tourondel’s interpretation of the classic burger joint. With a menu that will leave you licking your fingers with glee, not to mention an extensive list of decadent milkshakes to satisfy your sweet tooth, a meal at LT Burger might render a pinch in the arm to confirm the reality of this culinary dream come true.
Since the opening of the flagship location in the Hamptons in 2010, Chef Tourondel has made it a point to go beyond the ordinary in offering a creative selection of mouthwatering burgers that take into account all kinds of enticing combinations. With the opening of LT Burger’s Manhattan location, Chef Tourondel’s vision will please salivating Manhattanites looking to experience the ultimate in burgers, fries, and shakes.
Located across from Bryant Park in a bi-level space that used to house a bank as well as electrical engineer Nikola Tesla’s laboratory, LT Burger possesses essential elements of a modern bistro while preserving the building’s original infrastructure. One can appreciate such details as the white marble walls and tin ceilings, as well as the vintage brass lighting fixtures hanging over banquettes not to mention the smoked mirrors. With several flat screen televisions hanging through the restaurant, diners can stay abreast of the latest news developments during the day or cheer on one of the local sports teams after work. The restaurant is casual yet sophisticated mending together a classic décor with modern flair.
LT Burger serves up the goodies for that power lunch with colleagues or dinner with family and friends. Start off by perusing the drink menu. This may prove to be quite a dilemma. If you seek an adult beverage, LT Burger offers a nice selection of draft and bottled beers. Among the 14 different beers on tap, consider something beyond the ordinary such as Blue Point Toasted Lager ($7) or Hoegaarden Witte ($7) on tap. If you prefer bottled beers head outside your comfort zone with Lindeman’s Framboise ($12) or Hitachino white ale ($11).
If you prefer a glass of wine with your burger, choose from a nice selection of international options such as Chilean Carmenere ‘Reserva’ Casa Silva 2010 ($9 per glass, $34 per bottle) and New Zealand’s The Seeker Sauvignon Blanc 2011 ($10 per glass, $38 per bottle).
In the spirit of a burger meal, consider opting for one of LT Burger’s enticing cocktails, such as the Pink Floyd—Tito’s Vodka, grapefruit, elderflower, and cranberry—and the Hunny Mojito—Cruzan Rum, Meyer lemon, Bärenjäger honey liqueur, mint, and soda ($11 each).
While these choices may be attractive, it would be a shame if you did not try one of LT Burger’s 12 ridiculously delicious milkshakes. With flavors such as Death by Oreo—rich chocolate ice cream and a substantial amount of cookie bits—S’mores—creamy vanilla ice cream and toasted marshmallows serving as an ingredient and an extravagant topping—and Gone Bananas—banana foster ice cream and dulce de leche to complement diced bananas—kids and adults alike will struggle to narrow down a choice (ranging $6-$8). Perhaps you and your dining companions can order a few to share to avoid the dilemma. For the grownups if you are looking for an extra punch, enjoy one of LT Burger’s Rated “R” shakes, such as The Librarian, where Death by Oreo® is blended with amaretto and Godiva chocolate liqueur, and the Bryant Park, featuring mint ice cream and mint liquor, as well as New York Peppermint patties all mixed together ($11 each).
Complement your drink with a number of appetizing starters, showcasing local and organic ingredients wherever possible. Whet your appetite with the kosher fried dill pickles ($6)—crunchy pickle slices cut thick, battered, and fried and served with smoked buttermilk ranch dressing—or the Ahi tuna summer roll ($12)—a refreshing blend of avocado, cucumber, Thai basil, with a drizzle of soy ginger. If you are looking to spoil your appetite, consider the Muchos Nachos ($11)—chopped hearty brisket, topped with melted sharp cheddar, and salsa—and meal in itself.
When it comes to the main event, Chef Tourondel has left no stone unturned. Burgers start off with a 7-oz grilled Angus beef burger combination of 2-way chuck cooked to order and served on a toasted potato bun. Toppings include an assortment of cheeses including Mountain blue and mozzarella, as well as chili, mushrooms, and egg ($1.50-$2.50)
For the purist, you will find The Standard ($9) to adhere to your burger criteria focusing on the quality and taste of the beef, accompanied by lettuce, tomato, onions, and pickles. For the adventure seekers, consider the LT Backyard ($12) burger, with grilled hickory smoked bacon, New York state cheddar, and LT Burger’s special sauce, or the Pork Star ($13) burger—BBQ pulled pork topped with horseradish slaw, tobacco onions, and pickles.
For the ultimate burger experience, order The Mexican ($11)—where one’s love for burgers is escalated to another level with a delicious chili enchilada sauce, creamy guacamole, pickled jalapeños, and Monterey jack cheese. Warning! This burger is a mouthful and a bit messy, but so worth it.
If beef burgers are not your preference, no need to panic. Chef Tourondel features several dishes to please the pickiest eater, including the Veggie ($10) burger—an inviting mix of vegetables and spices, topped with avocado, Jack cheese, and wheatgrass, and served on a whole-wheat bun—and the Asian chicken salad ($13)—a well-portioned alternative featuring cabbage, avocado, watercress, and cilantro topped with a peanut dressing.
Where there are burgers, there are fries. In addition to offering hand cut ($3.75), waffle ($4.50), and sweet potato ($5) fries, LT Burger tackles the standards with its smoked Gouda curly cheese fries ($4.50). Consider this to be a basket of pure heaven as you feast on bites of cheesy goodness.
With so many choices, your meal at LT Burger will be anything but mundane. Whether you’re grabbing lunch or enjoying a relaxing dinner, you will find LT Burger’s prices to be quite reasonable. It’s likely that your meal will be a filling one, so be sure to come hungry. LT Burger also invites you for its nightly happy hour (5 PM-7 PM) where you can unwind after a busy day at work with a nice selection of cocktails and small plates.
8 West 40th Street
New York, New York 10018