As part of Eater's Burger Week, chefs at five Portland restaurants that are a tad burger-phobic agreed to make a special Eater Burger that will be available on their menus all this week. Every day, we've been highlighting a new off-the-menu creation, and next up: Double Dragon's Rob Walls.
With a long-stewing kitchen revamp nearly complete at SE sandwich spot Double Dragon, chef/owner Rob Walls christens the kitchen's brand-new griddle with an Eater Burger inspired (unsurprisingly) by similarly Asian flavors. After admitting to scrapping three or four "reject" versions (including one with a Thai chile romesco sauce), Walls offers a complex 1/3-pound burger featuring a Szechuan peppercorn surface, topped with a spicy sauce made of ground fermented soybean, minced garlic, ginger, Thai chile, rice vinegar, dry sherry, and a thick Bango sweet soy sauce (which Walls notes is often used in Indonesian cooking). Upon assembly, the burger is topped with a layer of five-spice bacon, which provides a substitute for cheese. "To me, there's a real issue making a burger like this, tied to Asian tradition," Walls says. "It's hard to make a burger without melting cheese on it... so bacon becomes a necessity."
The burger hits a lettuce-topped Grand Central bun slathered with sambal aioli; according to Walls, the acidity in the spicy sauce makes up for an on-burger pickle (though those will be served on the side). The burger's available on the Double Dragon menu now for $9 — and with the upcoming kitchen expansion, expect the burger to be a permanent feature when Walls's new expanded menu launches next week.
· Double Dragon [Official site]
· All Previous Double Dragon Coverage [Eater PDX]
· All Burger Week 2013 Coverage [Eater PDX]