I’m working on an extensive ramen piece, which is why I haven’t posted in a while. Along the way, I forgot to share this picture of the Slim Joe Burger from Mama’s on Washington Square, where I enjoyed a late lunch a couple weeks ago, after a mediocre-yet-encouraging round of 18 at Presidio. For me, the Slim Joe is about as good a hamburger as you could expect from a place where everything on the menu is well-prepared and delicious.
Although I wouldn’t designate this burger as a signature item at Mama’s (the Monte Cristo forever holds that title), I wouldn’t ever discourage anyone from ordering the Slim Joe, either. Quite simply, if you want a good and honest burger, this is that. Incidentally, the key to any sourdough sandwich is the bread: Use a baguette that is too dry and too chewy, and it will undermine the “eatability” of a hamburger (this same issue is also the undoing of many a meatball sub).
On the other hand, a baguette with a light, crisp crust can provide just enough delicate structure to gracefully replace the standard bun. Naturally, Mama’s uses the latter style of baguette, as if there would’ve ever been a doubt.