A Sandwich a Day: California Burger at The Plant Cafe Organic in San Francisco
The California burger ($11.50) at The Plant Cafe Organic leads one to an interesting philosophical debate. Can something still be termed a "burger" if it has no discernible burger-patty shape? If it falls apart off its bread receptacle? After eating one, I'm leaning towards no.
The California burger is certainly a good attempt at an interesting veggie burger, or sandwich as the case may be. Blood-red in hue, the veggie patty is a housemade creation of lentils, mushrooms, beets, cashews and bulgur wheat. The California version is topped with grilled onions, white cheddar, and avocado, on your choice of bread (go with the sprouted wheat bread). It all sounds very promising, and component-wise, the California burger is a mostly good sandwich.
The main problem, really, is the patty. Mushy and shapeless, it's made more problematic by its lack of textural contrast. There should really be some crisp lettuce or a tomato slice on this sandwich.
The surprising star here is the grilled onions. Sweet and just-caramelized, they're the major source of flavor. With some more white cheddar, those onions plus avocado, and that tasty bread, would make for an excellent sandwich. California burger, hold the patty? I might have to try it.
The Plant Cafe Organic
About the author: Lauren Sloss writes about food, music, travel, and everything in between. Some of her favorite things include The Black Keys, goat gouda, and guacamole. You can follow her on Twitter @laurensloss