LAS VEGAS ( TheStreet) -- With Memorial Day drawing near and thoughts of sizzling barbecues and lazy three-day summer weekends coming closer into view, we have yet another holiday to celebrate: National Burger Month.
The hamburger isn't just ground beef anymore. Whether you're dining out or eating in, the options for burgers have become more luxurious. TravelsinTaste has scoured the country for the most high-end (and fun) burgers for your dining pleasure.
|SmashBurger serves up Angus burgers with high-quality toppings.|
The father of the gourmet burger is Daniel Boulud and his db Bistro Moderne in New York. When the restaurant opened, gourmands flocked to try the Original db Burger, a sirloin patty filled with wine-braised short ribs and black truffle served on a Parmesan bun with pommes frites or pommes souffles. It sells for $32.Many high-end restaurants have since added burgers to their menus. At the luxurious St. Regis Resort in tony Dana Point, Calif., Michael Mina's Stonehill Tavern has added an American Kobe burger to his menu next to the salt-baked lobster and osetra caviar. His comes with truffle cheese, pickled onion and watercress for $28. For real decadence, one must head to Fleur de Lys at MGM Mirage's (MGM) Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. There, chef Hubert Keller has perfected his FleurBurger 5000. The FleurBurger is a decadent Kobe burger stuffed with foie gras and black truffles. The burger is served on a brioche truffle bun with Keller's special sauce, which includes even more truffles. You'll also receive a bottle of Chateau Petrus 1995 and Ichendorf Brunello stemware imported from Sweden. The staff ships the stemware to your home as a keepsake. The price is $5,000 (shipping included). If you take it down a notch, there are other interesting options on the Strip. Chef Sammy DeMarco's FIRST Food & Bar at the Las Vegas Sands' (LVS) Palazzo serves mini burgers with all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions and tomatoes for a mere $17.77. Sound familiar? His sauce takes its flavors from steak tartare, with cornichon pickels, capers and mustard mixed in. It's like Burger King (BKC) for adults. Looking for a little more heat? Check out Aria's SkyBox Sports Bar & Grill, whose Firecracker Burger, an eight-ounce patty blended with India's bhut jolokia chili pepper, which was rated the world's hottest chili pepper in 2007. If you finish the $18 burger, you get a free glass of beer.