Brasserie Burger With Cheddar
San Diego Burger Club went to The WineSellar and Brasserie (just off Mira Mesa Blvd) for lunch today. The white tablecloth on our table and the use of a crumber after the meal definitely put it at the higher end of the places we have visited thus far, though the burger only costs $12. In general we thought the burger was good, though it rated a B+/B.
On the plus side, the burger is quite thick, yet was cooked perfectly in all cases — nicely charred, cooked to the temperature ordered, and juicy. The burger also had a nice flavor to it, though I’m not sure whether the taste was coming from the sauce or from something in the burger or both. The bun also stood up well to the juicy burger and to the healthy dose of sauce on it. The restaurant also serves bread prior to the meal and the bread was quite good as well.
On the minus side, the only options for potatoes are “warm” garlic red potatoes (plus salad) or warm truffle potato salad. I put “warm” in quotation marks because the red potatoes are described that way on the menu, but in actuality they were quite cold. They weren’t bad, but I would have greatly preferred hot fries or hot tater tots to the 7 slices of small red potatoes (plus salad) on my plate. The cheese on the burgers also stood out like a sore thumb. Here you are in a nice restaurant with white tablecloths, and it looks like they put a slice of processed cheese on your burger and didn’t even attempt to melt it. The sauce on the burger also was quite drippy and messy. If there was a way to eat the burger without getting sauce on your fingers, I didn’t figure it out. Finally, while the burger was not very expensive at $12, one thing they don’t tell you when you sit down, or when you order, or when you agree to a drink refill, is that they charge for soda refills. Two of us ordered Diet Cokes and agreed to refills when asked if we wanted them — that’s $2.75 times 4 for two Diet Cokes. Gotcha.
WineSellar certainly was saved by serving an above-average burger, but with all the negatives it only managed a B+/B rating. WineSellar is a nice restaurant with a good menu and an excellent wine selection, but as you might suspect from the restaurant’s name and from the numerous Wine Spectator awards on the wall, it’s more about the wine than the burger.