All About the Burger
I couldn’t resist an offer to review All About the Burger ($16.99, Mango Publishing), not only because of National Hamburger Month, but also because the author, Sef Gonzalez, is nicknamed Burger Beast.
In this self-proclaimed Bible of burgers, Gonzalez takes a look at some of the famous burger joints across the country, including White Tower in Milwaukee (p. 39); regional specialties, including the Wisconsin Butter Burger (p. 193); and burger events, including Burger Fest in Seymour, Wis. (p. 207).
One more Wisconsin connection: Gonzalez even gives a shout-out to Culver’s (“When Culver’s finally opened in Florida, I made the almost two-hour trek to Naples with my cousin Fred. We were not disappointed.”).
I also enjoyed reading about the history of hamburgers and restaurants. For example, Gus Belt, founder of Steak ‘n Shake, purchased a farm and bootlegged cattle to make sure that his restaurants weren’t affected by the beef shortage during World War II.
Gonzalez, who blogs about comfort food, has a straightforward writing style, and you can certainly tell he is a big fan–if not the biggest fan–of burgers. The inspiration for the book came after he was gifted a vintage Burger Chef sign. In fact, Gonzalez now owns more than 5,000 artifacts and ephemera, all of which are on display at his Burger Museum in Miami.
All About the Burger is a fun read for anyone who considers themselves a foodie and/or enjoys a nostalgic trip throughout our country’s burger history.