Labor Day weekend is almost here — yikes, where did summer go? — and that means many of us are getting ready for that all-American summertime pastime of grilling burgers.
I don’t eat red meat, so unless I make my own, I’m usually left out in the cold when it comes to burgers. It’s rare to find a restaurant around town that serves burgers that aren’t made from beef. And yet I’d venture I’m not the only one in town looking for non-bovine burgers.
RG Burgers has long cornered the “alternative” burger market in town, but honestly, they’re not cutting it for me anymore — their turkey burger is just a little bland. So I’ve been on the lookout for alternative burgers — veggie, turkey, salmon — around town this summer.
I recently tried out American Burger in New Monterey on a whim. They’re not much for atmosphere, but the turkey burger was decent — certainly better than I’d expected.
Phat Burger in Seaside has also joined the turkey takeover. Their turkey burger was juicy and flavorful. It wasn’t perfect — a little salty — but it’s easily better than others I’ve had in these parts.
But few other shops here on the Monterey Peninsula offer more than beef burgers and store-bought veggie burgers.
Santa Cruz seems to be ahead of the curve. There, shops such as Betty Burgers or burger. offer non-beef patties. Betty Burgers serves up classic combinations, while burger. — with a period! — makes more gourmet fare. Both have burgers available with beef, turkey or housemade veggie patties.
Let’s hope more restaurants closer to home follow their lead!