Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

Every year I discover a new burger that changes the game for my view on the burger scene in New York.

Last year, I finally got to try Joe Jr. which I still recommend as a great classic burger in the city. In 2015, it was the Fedora Burger at the tiny Bar Sardine. And the now sadly closed Frtizl’s Lunch Box rocked my world in 2013. And this year, it is no doubt Café Altro Paradiso that I will be remembering when I write a similar post in 2018.

The burger at Café Altro Paradiso is a new addition to this classy Italian restaurant from the talent behind the nearby Estela. I hadn’t been to Altro Paradiso before because they only served dinner which has become tough for me with a newborn.

But now that they have opened up the place for weekday lunchers, I finally stopped by. And while I had always wanted to try one of their well-praised pasta dishes, this new burger was getting all sorts of attention. And I was craving a burger.

It was truly phenomenal and unlike most burgers in the city. The rich patty was peppery and charred like usual but it also had an extra kick of flavor from fish sauce, chile oil, and rosemary. Then it’s topped with funky gorgonzola, a sweet caramelized radicchio, a red pickled onion and caper before it’s sandwiched on a buttery brioche bun.

And if you thought the messy burger is the main attraction, you’re right. But that doesn’t mean the side of patate fritte (french fries) aren’t equally as worthy. They are addictingly browned and crispy with a soft starchy center. The two dipping sauces (mayo and chile-pepper relish) are nice and worth trying but completely unnecessary.

Richness is an understatement here, but it’s irresistibly good and worth every bit of gout it may cause. Can’t wait to see what burger will destroy me next year. Until then, this is the best burger in the city. Hands down! Price: $22

CAFÉ ALTRO PARADISO
234 Spring Street (at 6th Avenue),
Soho
(646) 952-0828
altroparadiso.com
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About the Author

Brian Hoffman is a classically trained actor who is now a full-time tour guide, blogger, and food obsessive. He leads food and drink tours around New York City, which not only introduce tour-goers to delicious food, but gives them a historical context. He also writes food articles for Gothamist and Midtown Lunch in addition to overseeing this blog and a few food video series, including Eat This, Locals Know, and Around the World in One City.

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