Umami (noun) – a category of taste in food (besides sweet, sour, salt and bitter), corresponding to the flavour of glutamates, especially monosodium glutamate.
Or I prefer its literal Japanese translation – ‘deliciousness‘.
Umami is hands down the tastiest, most interesting burger I’ve had in NYC so far. It may have something to do with the fact it was truffle season when I went and they had an entire menu dedicated to it.
To get the best of both worlds, we ordered from their main menu as well as their truffle-season menu. But don’t worry, I’m not a complete idiot – on their main menu they also have a classic burger with truffle for people to enjoy out of season. I ordered the classic truffle with house-made truffle cheese and truffle glaze. My friend ordered the Truffled Speciale Burger (listed above) with everything you could think of, including a fried egg.
Each burger came with the Umami signature ‘U’ imprinted on bun. In a previous London post you may have remembered me griping on about how unhygienic burger printing is. Well, in this case, I couldn’t care less!
The burgers were an incredible mix of salt from the Wagyu beef pattie (yup, that’s right, Wagyu!) and truffle cheese, and sweet from their Umami Master Sauce. It’s a new spin on soy sauce that’s infused into the meat and dolloped on top. They call it ‘UMAMIFYING’ and you can buy it from their shop here.
Just look at it all oozing over the sides. This, I felt, was the ideal opportunity to take a video of just how succulent it was. Click on the video clip below.
It was heavenly. Not your typical burger by any means, but I think that’s the reason why I liked it so much. It was different. I feel as though a lot of burger places are becoming the same variation of each other (obviously they are – they are all variations of burgers), but if they lack anything more than a pattie, bun and a lick of cheese, it ain’t gona cut it anymore.
The chips too were tasty. Nothing particularly special about them, except their dipping sauces.
Umami presented us with four types of dipping sauce. Their Umami Ketchup is not your typical ketchup. It’s slightly sweeter than normal with a hint of (yup, you guessed it), truffle! They also shared with us a mild pepper sauce, something that tasted a little like a yoghurt-based sauce, and of course mayo. Honestly, I didn’t really fancy most of them – as you may know from reading my previous reviews I’m much more of a ketchup and mustard kinda gal. But in keeping with the alternative flavours of the burger, they worked well.
Umami is definitely the most flavoursome burger I’ve had in a while, and certainly the best I’ve had in New York. It’s incomparable to other things I’ve tried with its rich flavour (particularly truffle), heavy substance and abundant aroma. Not something that one could have every day, but certainly something to have. One could say, I’ve been Umamified.
Burger rating: 5/5
432 Avenue of the Americas