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Tuesday, April 17, 2012


forks: 7
Price: $$

205 S. 18th Street
Philadelphia, PA

The first time I ever visited Penn, my bro Jake and cousin Whitney took me to Rouge. I had the classic Rouge Burger, and well, now I'm at Penn. When Ali asked me to go to lunch today and was looking for a  place, I suggested the restaurant for another reason besides the burger. Ali is absolutely OBSESSED with anything truffle and I remembered them having these Truffle Fries and knew they were right up her Ali *lol alley* so we made the plan to go. Honestly, it was the most beautiful day out in the world. It was a little bit hot, but the sun was shining, everyone was in such a good mood and it just felt like summer. Ali's mom, Barbara aka Boppy aka Bopstar, was in town so I met the two of them at the restaurant. While the table was actually the size of my hand, the location couldn't have been better. There we sat, overlooking Rittenhouse Square on this b-e-a-utiful day as Ali sipped on her favorite Arnold Palmer and we gazed at the scenic almost movie-like view. Before we ordered we were brought a sourdough roll and a pat of butter. The roll was so good and so fresh, a crusty outside with a perfectly doughy center, and the butter boasted fleur de sel (flakes of salt) which brought out its creamy sweetness even more. Just the right way to start the meal.

I decided to order something new, and thought since the classic burger was good, I might as well try the Tuna Burger. The Tuna Burger was a tuna patty topped with pickled daikon and carrot, shiitake mushrooms, and wasabi mayonnaise all on a buttery brioche served with a side of cold soba noodle salad. I actually didn't even know for sure if I liked tuna before ordering this, but now I know that I DO (as long as its not tunafish ew). The burger was amazing. It was well cooked, slightly pink in the middle, and had an incredible flavor. The mayonnaise packed a slight punch and the carrots and daikon gave it a needed and appreciated crunch. The brioche roll tied it all together, ugh that roll was buttery and fluffy and just delicious. The soba salad was good, sprinkled with red onion, edamame, tomatoes, and red peppers. It was simple and light, not overdressed, but a nice accompanying side.
Papparazi on the burger

omg NOM pleeeze

Boppy went with the Panko Chicken Salad, a mesclun salad topped with panko breaded chicken breast and a mango salsa. While the chicken was good, Boppy and I both felt that the dressing was way too sweet. She said it was almost "dessert-like." Not exactly what we want on a salad. We wanted something saltier, like some kind of miso ginger or soy dressing or maybe just some more SALT. It was just aaiight, disappointing, certainly nothing special.

One of us had to order THE burger so Ali took it upon herself. Although Ali likes her meat cooked as well done as a burnt marshmallow, the burger still managed to be succulent, juicy, and so so tender. She doesn't like ketchup, cheese, onions, or basically ANYTHING that usually comes on top of it, but somehow it still managed to be great, showing how a great burger really can stand on its own. Once again the buttery brioche was used, major winner.
(yes I know it is cooked to a crisp, don't blame Rouge for Ali's well done taste)

At first when the burger came down with its side order of fries, they were plain and not the truffle version. Minus points. But once it was remedied, points went up. They had a strong truffle flavor, but were crispy and delicious and still tasted like french fries. The parmesan added a salty nuttiness and Ali was loving it. I think I got two fries before she finished the whole thing.

 As we were about to leave the table next to us received their food and I just had to photograph it because this is what I will be getting next time. A buffalo chicken sandwich with bacon. OMG just look. Beautiful, wish I would have asked for a bite..just kidding, too far. Seriously someone grab my leash.
So lunch was good, the salad was disappointing, but both burgers, even Ali's plain patty, really lived up to the hype. But while the food was great, the company was better! Love my Immerguts!

burgers be da bomb

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