The Collection – 328 Bridge Rd, Richmond VIC

Posted: May 10, 2014 in Burger Hunt
Tags: , , , ,

thecollectionFriday night in Richmond – almost too many options for a meal… Thankfully, my good friend and Richmond local, Sarah had made the selection and booked a bar called The Collection. A little place off Bridge rd which has a reputation for cocktails and a Cajun and BBQ themed menu. Of course I checked if they had a burger option before hand – you never can be too safe. When we arrived, it was quite busy – what you would expect on a Friday night on Bridge Rd? Thankfully Sarah had booked so the four of us – Katie, Sarah and Dave headed in and grabbed our table. The menu has a lot of cocktail options – next time I might explore this part of the menu in a little more detail, but this time around it was more about the beer and the burgers. They have the Sierra Nevada Pale Ale on the menu which is a really, really good American beer, one of my favourites, and at $10 a bottle, not too bad for city prices. Anyway, so we started with a nice cold beer and then ordered a round of their entrees. Starting with the buffalo wings, jalapeno poppers and macaroni and cheese croquettes. Unfortunately I don’t have any photographic evidence – we ate everything too quickly – but hot damn! These wings were some of the most authentic tasting I’ve had on this side of the pacific. I think I might need to go back in the near future just for the wings! The Jalapeno poppers were actually pretty mild, quite tasty in fact, and the macaroni and cheese croquettes were delicious – better than most I’ve had in Australia – the only downside is that they are really big, not really finger food size (Really, I’m just searching for something to be critical of… too big? Seriously, I should just shut-up).

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So obviously the entrees were a hit, backed up by some good beer – we were off to a good start. On to the mains – everyone ordered different things, Katie got the Seafood Gumbo, Dave, the Louisianan fried chicken, Sarah got some Chilli  fries, and I or course, got the Burger. Now, I’ll get to the burger in a moment. Before that though, I want to describe the chilli cheese fries just for those of you who are playing along at home. Holy moly were these some hellishly hot magma chilli fries. Sarah – who claims to have a pretty high tolerance to all things spicy, was defeated after eating a pretty wimpish amount of her fries. Well, ok, so I tried a tiny bit and I thought my mouth was on fire, so I shouldn’t criticise too much. I’m not sure if this was just accidentally too hot, or the chef was having a laugh – but perhaps a warning next time??

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On to the burger – Thankfully, my burger was a little further down the scoville scale and I had finished eating it before I had my taste buds melted off so I’m at least able to provide a description of my experience. The “Smokehouse” burger is described on the menu as:

Mesquite smoked beef, Kraft cheese, bourbon bbq sauce, house pickle, gunpowder onion rings

The BBQ and the onion rings come on the side, and the burger is framed by a nicely toasted brioche bun. There’s also some cajun aioli thrown in for good measure. This is a burger that I think is going to  polarize some punters. There’s a lot going here, I’ll say in a good way, but I can see how some might not go for the bold flavours.

Anyway, lets get to the point shall we? The brioche bun was lovely, crispy on the toasted on the inside, but springy and soft to the fingers on the outside. Its subtle sweetness complemented the smokey burger well. The patty had a strong smokey flavour, still juicy and beefy but the dominating flavour was the smoke, which worked really well with the spicy cajun aioli and the salty Kraft cheese. To top it all off was a generous amount of the house pickles – cutting through and complimenting the smokey beef and spicy flavours. This burger just worked for me – the spicy/smokey notes elevated the burger away from the ordinary and made it special. Give it a try if you like the flavours of smokey BBQ ribs and spicy buffalo wings. I’d give it an 8.

 

The Collection on Urbanspoon

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