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Sunday, 19 July 2015

Prohibition Burgers and Hooch, New Plymouth, Cheeseburger - 7.5/10

Prohibition Cheeseburger - Green Meadows organic beef pattie, aged cheddar, dill pickles, bacon, mustard and mayo - $14

School holidays and we decided on a road trip to New Plymouth for the weekend.

"New Plymouth!  Why would you go there?"you might ask.

Good question.  Answer - Puke Ariki. Coastal Walkway. Wind Wand. Fun Ho Toys.  Len Lye Centre. Prohibition Burgers and Hooch...


Yes. Prohibition Burgers and Hooch. I was up here just over a month ago for work and heard about a new burger joint opening. Unfortunately it was on the day I was leaving so I missed out on a visit. But it gave me a reason to return and so I was back with the family in tow and I wasn't missing out a second time.

So there you have the context.  Now the review.

Arrived right on opening (12 noon on a Sunday) and were warmly welcomed by an amped-up crew. The place had atmosphere and the decor suggested a bit of effort and thought had gone into the place. I knew we were in for a bit of a treat.

I ordered the obligatory cheeseburger, and Dawn had the wild burger of the month (duck!!) - little tacker size. The kids, not up to a burger (I question their commitment), went with the fried chicken and fries.  To round off the meal we also ordered onion rings.

Being a Sunday I got to have a couple of shots (mini-basketball) to win my sides. They were lucky basketball isn't my game, as the cost of the sides was more than for the burgers! I missed both times. Not even close. No mind.  It was fun and the kids thought it was pretty cool that we could potentially have won free food.

The food arrived pretty promptly (which was good as we were the first ones there) and it all looked damn tasty.  Dawn's little tacker burger was pretty much the same size as mine and was more than enough for her.  The onion rings and fries were cooked well.  Crispy and nicely seasoned. The fried chicken was superb - for an adult.  They turned out to be a bit spicy and so the two young ones were disappointed. I told them to eat the fries and I would get them something later. (so yes, a good set of sides to choose from, and all worthy).

But lets get to the main event - the Prohibition Cheeseburger. Visually, the burger was  the main attraction, served on a disposable plate with a steak knife stabbed through the middle (not really needed as the burger was well balanced). But it was one of the better looking burgers I have seen. Nicely browned brioche bun with some seeds on the top (poppy?). Charred bacon and oozy cheese.  Well Mayo'd.

The slice through showed the rest of the ingredients - a well done pattie and the dill pickles. The burger was well put together with the ingredients spread out (there were only four, but it is amazing how many just don't put any care into assembly - a bug bear of mine).

The pros. Loved the bun. Soft, fresh, slightly sweet. The perfect envelope for the contents inside. The pattie had great texture and flavour. The pickles were sharp and tangy. Perfect contrast.  Bacon added to the flavour and wasn't wasted. A little bit disappointing the cheese didn't really register. and that is because of what I think was too much mayo, which let the burger down.  It was overpowering. Ultimately, I had to scrape some of it off, once I had eaten half the burger.  The mustard was a wholegrain mix, which doesn't have the same sharpness as American mustard. And without tomato, lettuce or t-sauce, the pickle and pattie alone couldn't offset all that mayo.

But that is just me being critical.  Overall, it was an excellent burger, made with care and with quality ingredients. They obviously know their burgers and have done a great job,  both with their menu, but also in providing an experience for those who know their burgers. A great addition to the region's food scene. I would recommend Prohibition to any burger lover and can't wait until I am back in the 'naki, when I might try the Notorious B.O.B.

Awesome work guys. Long may you prosper!

Note: there was also too much mayo on the chips and the fried chicken (onion rings had mustard), which was poured straight on top.  Maybe the sauce guy was just feeling a bit enthusiastic that day ...

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