We really like to read about food as well as eating or writing about it. One of the blogs we like to read is the Boston Burger Blog. It focuses on great burgers in the Boston area and is written by Chef Richard Chudy. Along with former JM Curly Chef, Samuel Monsour, they have a highly anticipated cookbook that will be published in April 2015 from Union Park Press. To celebrate their new endeavor, for the next year, they are hosting a monthly series of pop-ups along with guest chefs. We missed Level 1 at Chops and Level 2 at Tavern Road but were determined not to miss Level 3.
Level 3 was held at Commonwealth with Chef and owner Steve “Nookie” Postal, a former Fenway Park executive chef, on Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at 9 PM. The event was free to attend, with no reservations at Commonwealth necessary and you could RSVP on Facebook if you so desired. Commonwealth is a restaurant-market hybrid with warm, relaxed, rustic-yet-still-modern decor. You can stop in for a family-style Sunday meal and then leave with dairy, farm fresh eggs, New England cheeses, fresh local produce, jams, ice cream or house made specialties. They also run a great $1 oyster special on Sundays. The new outdoor patio space, which seats 100 and recently opened this spring, looks like it will get a lot of use during nice summer days and evenings.
We came with two other dining companions so we could try all three burgers. There was quite a crowd waiting for the 9 PM start which was exciting. Note that you could only order items from the designated pop-up menu and the Commonwealth drink or dessert menu. We looked longingly at the ice cream on the dessert menu but we were here for the burgers.
For sides, we got the onion strings and duck fat fries. Both were perfectly made. The onion strings were thinly sliced, lightly salted and thinly battered so they were very crisp. The duck fat fries were carb heaven. If you haven’t had duck fat fries yet, I urge you to try them. Any protein or carb tastes better cooked in duck fat! They had a crisp golden exterior and a mealy tender interior that were addicting. We finished them by the time we were half way through our burgers.
Juicy Lucy with queso American, spicy ketchup, pickled watermelon, radishes, S&S English muffin
This was my least favorite of the three because of the smaller compact size of the beef patty and the thicker English muffin. The English muffin brought this burger more into sandwich territory for me and it would have been better if it was toasted. It was a good burger, but the other two burgers outshined this one. All the other burger elements were tasted good together and I really enjoyed the pickled watermelon.
Mason Dixon Mashup with Johnny cake oysters, mignonette ketchup, Pop’s slaw, grilled leeks, and sesame seed bun
This was my second favorite of the night. The medium-rare burger patty was well seasoned and cooked to my tastes. The Johnny cake oysters were really tasty with the coleslaw. The best part about the tangy sweet coleslaw was that it didn’t have too much mayo. Grilling the leeks added a special touch that made them similar to a large scallion when you ate it.
Chicken Fried Pork Belly Club with red remoulade, smoked heirloom tomatoes, grilled romaine, vidalia jam and white bread
This burger club was my favorite of the three offerings. The flavors were delicious together. I was surprised to see two generous thick cut slices of chicken fried pork belly on top of the burger. The fried pork belly gave the burger an edge because of the unctuous rich fat. Combining this with meaty burger, remoulade sauce, sweet onion jam, and tangy sweet tomato and my mouth was in positive sensory overload. It was incredible. The only suggestion I could make to take this burger club to the next level would be to toast the white bread well to give it some crunchy stiffness. This would make sure the soft white bread could stand up to the meat juices, cheese and sauces.
Were these three burgers worth storming the castle for? Yes!
We can’t to see what these two chefs cook up for July and hope to see you there. We’ll also be back to try Commonwealth’s dinner and brunch along with their Sunday $1 oyster special. The new patio looks too nice not to!
11 Broad Canal Way
Cambridge, MA 02142