Boulevard Diner

We truly believe that burgers are best enjoyed big. So after seeing Boulevard Diner‘s rather meaty-looking burgers on Balitanghali the other day, we just thought, “We got to get us one of those.”

A hole-in-the-wall burger place along Xavierville Avenue in Loyola Heights, Boulevard Diner may seem a little cramped and that’s because it is. But believe us when we say that when the food you ordered gets served, the place’s size wouldn’t matter.

For our first visit, instead of picking their house favorites, we ordered the newer, yet-unnamed burger creations on their menu: the double bacon, Swiss brown mushroom cheeseburger with pan gravy and the grilled portobello mushroom cheeseburger with baby arugula.

But let’s begin with an appetizer: crosstrax fries (P110).

Fries and burgers are as inseparable as, say, Ron and Hermione. They just jive well. It’s such a shame if you miss their perfectly cooked, crispy, golden-brown crosstrax fries because they really taste as good as they look. We’ve been to quite a number of burger joints, and we can say that Boulevard Diner’s fries are among the best out there.

My grilled portobello mushroom cheeseburger with baby arugula (P270) followed shortly. Like many huge burgers served before it, seeing how big it was brought a smile to my face.

Who would’ve thought that grilled portobello mushroom and baby arugula would make great burger toppings? Apparently, someone at Boulevard Diner did. Portobello mushrooms have a rather strong earthy taste but it also tastes a bit beefy so I’m quite amazed with explosion of flavor in my mouth when I took my first bite and meat and (commonly used) meat substitute collided. It’s a really interesting burger especially if you’re looking for something different.

Lynn’s double bacon, Swiss brown mushroom cheeseburger with pan gravy (P215) may lie on the more traditional end of the spectrum but it’s far from what you would consider an ordinary burger.

Double bacon cheeseburger with Swiss brown mushrooms, Boulevard Diner

It’s not unusual to have bacon, mushroom, and cheese on burgers these days. But gravy on your burger? Lynn says that it’s a pretty fun thing to have; gravy instead of ketchup, mayonnaise, and mustard is a heavenly concept. So, yeah, she enjoyed it mightily.

We topped it all off with a glass of chocolate milkshake (P125). It was rich, absolutely chocolaty, and ridiculously thick. If we have one complaint, it’s that the straw they use isn’t big enough the efficiently funnel all that shake-y goodness to our mouths.

Overall, we had a fine time eating in Boulevard Diner. It’s good to see that there’s a burger place that’s shaking things up in burger joint scene in our country. There are quite a number of places that offer nice, big burgers. But if you want your huge burger with a twist, this is the place to go to.

Boulevard Diner
Address: 91 Xavierville Avenue Loyola Heights, Quezon City
Phone: 5045634
Web: Boulevard Diner on Facebook

Anniversary burgers at Outback

Tj and I recently celebrated our eighth anniversary, and naturally, we celebrated it with food. After a half-hour of driving around without any viable dining option in mind, we suddenly remembered that we hadn’t eaten at Outback Steakhouse in a long time. We have to say that it was a great decision, choosing their big, hefty burgers for dinner. He had the Typhoon Burger, which also contained onion rings and the Typhoon Bloom sauce.

Typhoon Burger from Outback

I had my standard Bacon Cheeseburger. The bacon wasn’t as crispy as I’d like it to be, but I was too hungry to send back the bacon and have it fried a little more.

Bacon Cheeseburger from Outback

That was a great anniversary dinner.

Johnny Rockets

We often pass by Johnny Rockets (be it in Robinsons Galleria or Tomas Morato) but we never really seriously planned on visiting it. Reviews have been mixed, with some people raving about the place and a few saying that it’s nothing special. We ended up there anyway a couple of days ago. The promise of free-flowing fries was oddly enticing.

We were greeted by a cheerful chorus of welcomes upon entering the Tomas Morato branch and immediately commandeered a booth. Menus were plunked down in front of us and the selections presented themselves invitingly; the menu was crammed with burgers, of course, some sandwiches, chicken wings, hotdogs, fries, and shakes–typical burger place fare, in fact.

After some deliberation, we decided on getting the St. Louis and the Bacon Cheese Single (both priced at P395), along with a bottomless glass of Coke (P110) and a chocolate milkshake (P215). The meal took about 15 minutes to get to our table, during which the crew broke out into a dance to Kool and the Gang’s “Celebration.” Not very 1950s, but oh well.

When our drinks came with a plate of fries, my initial disgust with the seemingly overpriced food pretty much dissipated – the soda glass was huge, the shake was thick and creamy, and the fries were hefty.

Our burgers came a few minutes later with even more fries. Upon seeing the properly cooked bacon on our orders, we both knew we’re in for something wonderful.

The burgers were fantastic – the patties were juicy and nicely cooked. The bacon strips were crispy as well, a nice surprise considering how local food place don’t respect bacon at all, never frying them to a crisp and serving them like lifeless slices of lard. The caramelized onions in the St. Louis burger were especially good, and it’s great to find a burger wherein you can distinctly taste each of the ingredients. Oh, and the pickle they use is awesomely sweet and juicy. We really love burgers that don’t need obscene amounts of ketchup or mayo or secret sauce to taste good.

Oh yeah, the in-house clown also came by our table and created two balloon sculptures: a pink flower and a little blue dog.

While we may not visit Johnny Rockets any time soon, we’ll definitely come back someday when we have money to spare. Their food prices may be a little steep especially for those on a budget, but the damn place does serve food worth spending on.