This month, the Blue Door Pub announced a new limited-time Jucy Lucy-style burger, the Lumberjack Blucy, via Twitter. Owing either to their own sense of mystique or the 140-character limit, the Blue Door chose not to divulge too many of the details, revealing only that it "[came] with maple syrup." Unsurprisingly for a restaurant that features such Frankensteinian works as the Bangkok Blucy and Spam Bites, the rabbit hole goes much deeper than that.
Blue Door regulars know that the bar/restaurant is no stranger to envelope-pushing stuffed hamburgers. They've served "blucys" (their house name for Lucy) topped with fried eggs, flavored with Sriracha hot sauce, and topped with pastrami and cream cheese.
As it turns out, the Lumberjack ($8) is a burger stuffed Jucy Lucy-style with smoked Gouda, thick-cut bacon and cayenne pepper. The burger itself is finished off with a maple syrup glaze on the outside and served naked on a bun. Before you head out to try it, just know that no matter how delicately you put it, anyone who hears that you will be eating this will think that you are a filthy animal.
The Lumberjack's audacious combination of flavors is a pitch-perfect tribute to the crazy cooking ideas one can get during late-night cases of the drunchies. Who hasn't cobbled together some monstrosity out of the dregs of their fridge, only to fall asleep in their own filth seconds after eating it? This burger encapsulates that feeling of triumph, but without the part where you barf it up later.
Its only flaw is the floppy, undercooked bacon, though the liberal use of cayenne pepper makes up for that. The Blue Door cooks use enough pepper to keep a smoothly sharp burn on your tongue for a few minutes. The filling is refreshingly spicy, an unexpected move for a St. Paul pub nestled among antique shops. Its combination of spice, smoke and sweetness will hit you like a brick, but you'll be much happier for it. And, of course, it goes great with a pint.
- Head out to the Vietnamese restaurant Quang Saturday 1 p.m. to catch the Lunar New Year costumed dragon dance. Stick around and gorge on broken rice plates and pho.
- Cheeseheads (from any state in the Union) would do well to report to Barnes & Noble at the Galleria in Edina on Monday at 7 p.m. Star Tribune food writer Kim Ode will lead a discussion featuring Heavy Table's resident cheese authors James Norton and Becca Dilley ("The Master Cheesemakers of Wisconsin") and cheesemonger Song Lee of France 44.
- Local food site Simple Good and Tasty celebrates a year of publishing this Tuesday at the Grand Cafe. A three-course meal costs $42 and features cassoulet, a traditional French stew including duck confit, beans and sausage. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for reservations.
The Heavy Table team writes about food and drink in the Upper Midwest five days a week, twice a day, at www.heavytable.com.