March 18, 2018 | ° F

25 Burgers serves diners with variety of options

Photo by Matt Mikolay |

The Oreo milkshake at 25 Burgers is topped with whipped cream and a cherry, and food reviewer Matt Mikolay said it was thick, but not so thick it clogged the straw.

When it comes to food, the hungry masses value the power of choice. Butter or margarine? Ketchup or mustard? Delivery or DiGiorno? Lately, one restaurant in New Brunswick has been granting customers the right to choose exactly how they want their hamburgers.

A quick walk down the street from the Easton Avenue apartments, 25 Burgers, located at 4 Easton Ave., opened this past July. Part of a small chain, the New Brunswick restaurant was the eigth to open in the state.

25 Burgers’ interior provides both booth and table seating in a typical fast food style setup, similar to a McDonald’s or Burger King. Orders are placed at the counter and served on trays.

The appeal of 25 Burgers is the way it stands out from the competition. True to its namesake, the restaurant’s menu features 25 different burgers made fresh to order and unique in their own ways.

Photo: Matt Mikolay

25 Burgers features traditional fast food seating.

Photo: Matt Mikolay

Mikolay said the mozzarella sticks at 25 Burgers featured a crisp exterior

surrounding a core of gooey, stringy cheese.

The menu contains 12 different Angus burger options, including the Maui Burger, topped with pineapple, ham, cheddar cheese and glazed with a Teriyaki sauce, as well as the Philly Burger, 4 ounces of Philly steak with sautéed onions and American cheese.

But there’s more to 25 Burgers than just beef. The restaurant offers chicken burgers, turkey burgers and even a bison burger. There are vegetarian options for non-carnivores — the Black Bean Burger and the Athens Veggie Burger.

In addition to its lengthy burger menu, 25 Burgers features hot dogs, chicken tenders and other conventional fast food items.

They say variety is the spice of life, and 25 Burgers certainly has enough variety to make the mouth water. Though each and every burger sounded tempting, I opted for one of the more out-of-the-ordinary menu options.

I chose the Chipotle Bison Burger, a sandwich consisting of buffalo meat marinated in chipotle seasonings with crispy onion straws, cheddar cheese and topped off with lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise.

Served on a soft, freshly baked deli bun, the bison burger impressed with its bold, well-seasoned meaty flavor. The buffalo meat was juicy, a bit more gamey than beef, and possessed a mild spiciness from the chipotle seasonings.

The onion straws on the burger provided a light crunch with a fried flavor somewhat reminiscent of onion rings. The flavors of the Chipotle Bison Burger truly meshed well, and I find myself craving another as I write this review.

Next, I felt it was necessary to try out the Burger of the Month. Every month, 25 Burgers offers a different burger in its 25th menu spot. This October, they’re featuring the Cuban Burger, a sandwich of pulled pork, grilled ham, melted Swiss cheese, pickles, mustard and mayonnaise.

Unfortunately, the grilled ham on the Cuban Burger seemed to overwhelm the rest of the flavors. The sandwich was salty, and the pulled pork failed to shine through. I understand it is modeled after the Cuban sandwich, but the Cuban Burger at 25 Burgers just didn’t seem enough like an actual burger.

Of course, no burger would be complete without an order of french fries. The sea-salt fries at 25 Burgers were served in a plastic cup and strongly resembled diner-style french fries. Thick cut with a crunch, they possessed a layered crispiness which satisfied. The fries’ only major flaw was their heavy greasiness.

Paired with a thick marinara sauce, the mozzarella sticks at 25 Burgers featured a crisp exterior surrounding a core of gooey, stringy cheese. They were addictive, not suffering from rubbery cheese and soggy structure, and definitely worthy of praise.

To quench my thirst, I tried the Oreo milkshake. Topped with whipped cream and a cherry, the milkshake was thick, yet not so heavy as to clog the straw. The shake began with a pleasant vanilla ice cream flavor, quickly transforming into the rich chocolate flavor of Oreo cookies.

The taste is complemented texturally by the presence of ground Oreo cookie crumbles mixed in with the shake. Overall, the Oreo milkshake was sweet, satiating and paired well with the burgers.

Sue Arora, who owns the New Brunswick 25 Burgers along with her husband Raj, was on site and eager to discuss her vision for the restaurant.

“We’re thinking of new ways of promoting our restaurant,” Arora said. “We’re hoping to get the word out there, especially to Rutgers students. They love burgers.”

Arora emphasizes that every menu item at 25 Burgers is fully customizable to better suit the palates of the restaurant’s customers.

“One thing that we tell all of our customers? You can modify anything. You want to spice it up? We’ll put in more jalapenos,” Arora said. “You want to take the cheese off? Anything you want, we’ll modify it.”

The El Paso Burger features roasted poblano peppers, sautéed onions, bacon, pepper jack cheese, guacamole, lettuce, tomato and chipotle mayo on a Miami onion bun. A winning combination, according to Arora, but not necessarily her personal favorite.

“I have to say [that my favorite is] the Gyro Burger,” Arora said. “I love that lamb and turkey patty.”

The Gyro Burger features a ground turkey patty topped with grilled gyro strips, feta cheese, lettuce, tomato, red onion and tzatziki sauce.

The unique, extensive menu at 25 Burgers is worth checking out. Though some of the burgers might not be as impressive as others, students should consider stopping by the restaurant to experience one of the many interesting menu options.

There’s sure to be a burger for everyone on the menu. If you have the stomach and the wallet, consider ordering all 25.

By Matt Mikolay

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