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How to Make the Perfect Burger: Featuring Fix Burger Bar and Boynton Restaurant & Spirits

By Kristen Bosse

The question of how to cook the perfect burger is one that has puzzled cooks all over the nation for years. Something as simple as meat, cheese, and a bun, needs to be combined meticulously to ensure the burger looks good and tastes even better. Chef Bill Bourbeau of The Boynton and Chef Mike Muscarella of the Burger Bar are two cooks in Central Massachusetts that have perfected this process. Utilizing high quality ingredients and sticking to a pristine cooking method is the name to their game. Read more below to find out some specifics on how to simply create the perfect burger, America's go-to, classic grub.

High Quality Ingredients or No Ingredients!

"Building the perfect burger starts with sourcing top-quality ingredients", Muscarella states. "We pride ourselves on a diverse offering of building blocks. A proprietary house grind, grass fed beef from Maine, Kobe beef, and domestic lamb are always available." No matter how extravagant the toppings, the building blocks of a burger all come down to the beef. If you don't have quality beef to form the patty, the remaining components of the burger will fall apart. Most high quality burgers should be made out of Prime Grade beef, with grass-fed being preferable.

Making sure you use fresh, raw ingredients is no doubt another important part of this process. "I like to think that we have the best burger in Worcester because it is fresh and never frozen", Chef Bourbeau states. "A good burger can be made great with killer toppings but if the burger itself is mediocre, it won't matter what you put on it." When a burger is made with frozen meat, the end product often turns out tough, dry, and with a dulled out flavor. Using fresh meat means that you will have a burger that is bursting with flavor, full of juices, and read to be devoured. Check out on of his mouth-watering creations below.

When using quality beef to create your burger, it is important to utilize toppings that can stand up to the flavor of the beef, without overpowering it. How on earth are you supposed to do that? "Go fresh!", says Muscarella. "Bringing in fresh rolls every morning, meticulously slicing tomatoes and red onions, and using locally sourced pickles." Believe it or not, something as little as making sure your pickles are extra crisp, or slicing your tomatoes perfectly thin, can make a difference in how much the customers enjoys the burger. If you're feeling a bit more adventurous, The Fix also has some unique, delectable toppings to choose from including braised short ribs, Foie gras, pork belly, fried prosciutto, Parmesan crisps, and an extensive offering of house made toppings and sauces. Check out the mess of toppings in one of Muscarella's creations below.

Chef Bourbeau at The Boynton has a similar mindset, making sure he orders fresh sesame seed rolls for his burgers every day! Looking for lots of additions to your burger? Boynton also offers unlimited toppings and only charges extra for bacon. With bacon being the most popular burger addition in the United States, both restaurants make sure they are never short in supply. "Keep it perfectly crisp!", urges Muscarella. With quality beef and crisp bacon, its no wonder customers are lined up for their burgers!

Grill or Flat Top

After you check your ingredients off the list, it is time to start forming the burgers and get them ready for cooking. Where should you start? Chef Bourbeau claims that the secret is cooking it to your desired temperature. "We char grill all our burgers to order and to temp desired! No pink or brown offerings here! People seem to really want to choose a temp on their burgers and it makes a difference." By allowing their customers to choose an exact temperature, they are ensuring that each person gets exactly what they want. Also, one of the great parts about grilling the burger is that apart from the great look of the char marks, the flames help to give it a great, smoky flavor.

Although the grill is clearly the more popular choice for cookout aficionados around the states, others believe that using a flat top is the better way to get the best end product. Chef Muscarella responded with his opinion. "A flat top is the perfect vehicle for getting a great burger. Its high, even heat gives our burgers a great sear, while keeping the center perfectly juicy." This irreplaceable crust that is created by the flat top has become somewhat of an addiction for burger nuts. The flat-top method allows for the burger to get crisp on the outside, while the juices continue to flow on the inside. Chef also adds that the juiciness of their burgers is in part to the way they care for their burgers, carefully forming them by hand each day. Forming your burgers by hand makes sure that the meat isn't packed or patted down, often resulting in a tough texture and less room for the juices to flow. Check out how juicy his creations turn out below.

The great thing about a burger, and perhaps why it has become so popular over the years, is that it comes with endless possibilities. Whether it is grill or flat top, no toppings or covered in delicious additions, it can be delicious with the right ingredients and the right preparation. As long as you start with quality beef, form them carefully, and cook to your desired temperature, you have the potential to create your own personal masterpiece. Follow these guidelines and you simply can't go wrong!

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Kristen has written impressive content including press releases and feature stories...

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