Farnatchi. It's a little Mediterranean joint tucked in between Jersey Mike's and City Cigars in Knox Park. Its menu spans Italy, Turkey and the Middle East with offerings that tempt your senses and push the boundaries of your average lunch. You can order zaatar bread followed by pasta pomodoro. Turkish cigars filled with spiced beef ... and a calzone. You get the picture.
Anyway, each time I've been in for lunch, I've watched table after table of businessfolk order up a burger per person, like they know something the rest of us don't. This phenomenon was surely not without cause or legend.
Today was the day. I ordered the burger, medium rare, and was promptly informed they do not cook this burger to order due to the matter of the cheese baked inside the patty. A burger sans customization? Sounded all too familiar.
Thankfully, the Farnatchi burger delivered. It's seasoned with Mediterranean spices and filled with melty cheese that oozes out at you, in a good way. It's topped with fresh veggies and a spiced mayo sauce. The roll is soft with crispy grilled edges. A fine burger indeed. And the best part? Lunch pricing. This tasty burger with fries (or salad, for us bitches) and a soft drink is just $9. Are you paying attention, Alice?
Turns out, City of Ate did a little burger battle back in 2010, facing beef versus beef at many a local spot, including Farnatchi, which battled against Square Burger. The description of the Farnatchi burger was spot on, as delivered by the infamous Stephen Doyle back in the day. Farnatchi lost on that occasion, but today it won another fan: me.
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The bottom line? Take this burger on a test drive, and in turn it'll take your tummy on a tour of the Mediterranean. I'd say for $9, that's a pretty good deal.