The Italian Burger

Today I found myself wandering around Johannesburg with out much to do and decided I needed a haircut, so I pulled out my phone and looked for the nearest barber shop.  I followed the directions as Google maps called them out to me, only making a couple wrong turns, until I found the shopping center where my selected barber shop could be found.  I Parked my car and started looking for the shop.  It took me about 5 minutes to locate it and while I was there a good 20 minutes before closing time they would not let me in so I was not destin to get a haircut today.  I was a little disappointed not to get my haircut but that’s OK I as had noticed another destination as I wandered the shopping center, a little restaurant and bar in the corner with an interesting name.

I had found Beach Blanket Bohemia and the good food that went with it.  As I was walking by, looking for the barber shop, I had noticed the band beginning to set up inside and the good smells coming out of the restaurant on the corner and had already decided to have my lunch.  When I walked in the place was fairly crowded and I was forced to sit in a corner with a heavy burgundy curtain hanging behind me.  It only took a few moments for this curtain to start bothering me so I got up again and wrestled with it until I had pulled it out of my way.

By now my waiter had shown up with my menu and took my drink order, a draft Peroni.  It only took me a few minutes of browsing the menu to select the Italian burger (I think I was predisposed to the idea of having a burger for lunch).  My beer arrived, I placed my order, and leaned back to continue reading book 3 of the Dark Tower by Steven King and await my imported burger from Italy.

My Italian dinner companion (hmm guess it is rude to eat your dinner companion but it was worth it) riding on a wooden plank accompanied by a glass (yes a drinking glass) of fries and a small dish of basil pesto.  The burger was dressed a nice soft bun lightly coated in sesame seeds accessorized by a bed of mixed greens and topped off with sun-dried tomatoes.  The burger itself, was infused with a mix of Italian herbs and stuffed with mozzarella cheese and looked juicy beyond belief.  I had to restrain myself from picking it off the plank and taking a big bite and take a short break to snap a few pictures.  Once the pictures were taken I picked my Italian friend up and took a big old bite.

I was right, the burger was juicy beyond belief and so full of flavor I could hardly wait to take my second bite.  My second bite, following close on the heels of my first with barely any time to chew and swallow, was not only full of juicy but also a the nice creamy texture of mozzarella cheese.  At this point I knew I had made the right choice and was thoroughly envying the Italian Burger.  Normally when I eat a burger there is way too much bun and I usually end up taking two or three bites of the burger with the bun then finishing the burger with my fork and knife leaving the bun off to the side.  This was one of the rare times when I found there was not only the right amount of burger to bun ratio, but the bun it’s self was a tasty addition to the experience.

I don’t think I put the burger down until I had eaten every last bite and not only licked my fingers clean but picked up every last drop of crumbs from the plank.   Hmm I guess I should say I never put the burger down.

My dining experience was made complete by the live music performed in the other room (the band I had seen setting up earlier).  The music was a selection of songs from the 60’s through the 90’s, starting off with Marvin Gaye’s “I Heard it Through the Grapevine” and finishing (when I left, the band was still playing) with Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here”

I will defiantly visit Beach Blanket Bohemia again in the near future, and often again after that.

-erik

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