A Burger in Bunkyo-ku

by Jake Jacobs
10 July 2009

Jake Jacobs

It's all very well for Carl to talk about his "six-dollar" burgers, but he'd be experiencing sirloin envy if he knew what they were charging in Japan. I haven't seen a Carl's Jr. in Japan, so perhaps the burger that goes for six bucks back home might require a mortgage in Tokyo. There is a six-dollar hamburger in Japan, at Freshness Burger, though with the exchange rates tilting yenward lately it is more like a seven-dollar burger. Quite a hamburger I have to admit. The one I ate last December came on a fresh-baked poppy seed bun, had fresh lettuce, fresh tomato (I think I know where the name comes from!), a slice of raw onion (what fast food place in the States offers that), had real cheddar melting off of it, and was served rare. Try to find one of those at home!

There's a rumor that most of the "meat" is a soy mixture, and it could be so. But it was still, to quote Jules Winnfield: "one tasty burger!" It isn't the most expensive burger I've seen; that honor goes to the "$101 burger" in Singapore. The 101 burger was made from wagyu beef and was garnished with pate de foie gras and truffles, I think. I never got up the nerve to order one, and now they are out of business so we're left wondering if it was really a hundred and one dollars worth of wonderful.

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