The best hamburger in the borough right now might just be the one without any burger in it.
Chef Kenny Tufo at Strong Place in Cobble Hill has created a lamb burger ($11) that is the picture of structural perfection. A thick grilled patty, charred on the outside but juicy on the inside, is served on a sturdy Balthazar bun smeared with feta, with lettuce, tomato and pickles on the side. The meat, from Los Paisanos on Smith Street, is seasoned only with salt and pepper.
It’s the Platonic ideal in a hamburger — juicy, meaty, and redolent of the animal from which it hails. It’s so good, it might even surpass the lamb burger at Clover Club.
“I think what makes it so good is the fat-to-meat ratio,” said owner Jeff Lederman, who also owns Boca Lupo. “It’s just cooked right and we use high-quality ingredients.”
A spiced-up horseradish ketchup accompanies the burger, as does a cone of “waffle chips,” a thick-cut, chili powder-dusted chip-fry hybrid.
Beyond the burger, Strong Place is a worthy entry into the gastro-pub category, serving up a short, seafood-heavy menu alongside an impressive list of 24 American craft beers on tap. Like most recently opened eateries, there is a preoccupation with seasonal fare and a tendency towards simple, updated classics.
One thing is certain: there’s nothing stale about an old classic when it tastes this good.
Strong Place [270 Court St. at Butler Street in Cobble Hill, (718) 855-2105)