The Riff Mountain Burger/War Pigs Foggy Geezer/Down “II A Bustle in Your Hedgerow”
Truth be told, we have no idea where the name of this burger came from. We were using Heartbreaking Dawn’s Riff Lord Red Jalapeño sauce in the onions and contemplating the size that this burger would be and voila, “Riff Mountain” was born. The burger is a 1/3 lb grass fed beef patty that gets topped with a huge chunk of melted blue cheese, a mound of spicy grilled onions and thick sliced crisp hickory smoked bacon. All served up on a pretzel bun, it definitely lived up to its name. We didn’t just stop there; we paired up this awesome burger with the Three Floyds/War Pigs/Mikkeler collaboration IPA Foggy Geezer and one of our all time favorite albums, Down’s “II – Bustle in Your Hedgerow”. This is gonna be a fun night!
The Riff Mountain Burger – With only three toppings, we’re shooting for the highest quality of each here to make this burger top notch. Since the onions will need a little time to do their thing, we can start there. In a sauce pan we melt about a tablespoon and a half of Irish butter. Once melted, we add in 3-4 thinly sliced medium onions.
Now it’s time to season them with a double shot of spicy, handcrafted flavor. First, we hit them with a liberal amount of our Cloak of Feathers Chicken & Wing Rub followed by a few shots of Heartbreaking Dawns Riff Lord Red Jalapeño Sauce. Give the onions a quick stir so that they soak up the butter, seasoning and sauce turning everything a beautiful reddish orange color.
The onions will go for a little over 30 minutes, so while they’re getting acquainted with Riff Lord and Cloak of Feathers, we can head out to the grill in this frigid Chicago weather. On a hot grill, we place a cast iron pan and add in half strips of thick cut, top quality bacon. Since the grill is so hot, these will only take a few minutes to become crisp. Watch closely, too long on the grill and at best you get bacon that resembles a charcoal briquette, at worst you get a towering grease fire inferno that will look like the Tesla rocket launch. Remove the bacon from the pan then shift the pan over to the cool side (you’ll see why in a minute…)
With meat #1 done, we move on to the all important meat #2, the grass fed beef patty. We form the beef into 1/3 lb discs then season liberally with our (Not So) Gentle Butcher’s Rub.
These babies are ready to hit the flame. Over the hot part of the grill throw the patties down. Looking for a dark char on both sides, this should take about 3-4 minutes per side.
Now, you ready for this? Move the burgers to the pan with the hot bacon grease, then cover the patties with a mound of Amish blue cheese and cover the grill until melted.
Now we build. Starting with placing the patty on a toasted pretzel bun.
A couple strips of crispy bacon goes on next followed by the onions that have now been cooking down for awhile.
No other sauce required, the juicy burger, melted blue cheese and buttery onions provided more than enough flavor to make this three topping burger one of the best we’ve ever made.
War Pigs Foggy Geezer – As we patiently wait for this Danish heavy metal BBQ/Brewpub to open a location stateside (that’s wishful thinking on our parts folks, we have absolutely zero inside information on this actually ever happening) we’ve been living vicariously through their Instagram feed of tasty BBQ meats, delicious looking beer and the occasional stoner rock band stopping in to party there for a while. For now, thanks to local brewers Three Floyds along with Danish brewers Mikkeller, we’re one step closer to at least part of that experience with production of some of the War Pigs brand beer occurring here in the Midwest; this making three of their beers fairly widely available across the Chicago area. We opted for their hazy IPA Foggy Geezer to pair up with this burger and before you even crack the can, you have to tip your hat to the marketing perfection this brand has achieved. With its all black can including the top of the can, killer artwork, font, it looks like when you open the can to pour out the beer, heavy metal in liquid form would spew out instead. You know any IPA that Three Floyds has their hands in is going to be a hop monster and Foggy Geezer is no different, it’s also beautiful to look at with a juicy citrusy aroma. You know we love our burgers and IPAs and when the burgers are spicy (which pretty much all of ours are) that pairing becomes even better.
Down “II” – By far our favorite release from this NOLA supergroup that we include in one of our top five bands of all time. The band slows down and sludges out and finds THEIR sound after the highly acclaimed debut “NOLA” which understandably bounced around from the styles of CoC, Pantera and Crowbar. “II” is a sludge metal classic, its brooding and dark for sure but Anselmo’s penchant for killer vocal hooks (when he’s not busy belting out the guttural roars for Superjoint, that is) makes virtually every song on this album incredible. The album starts with the swampy, half spoken word “Lysergik Funeral Procession” and begins one of the best double albums in rock history. There’s Something On My Side”, “The Man That Follows Hell”, “Stained Glass Cross”, “Ghosts Along the Mississippi”, “Learn From This Mistake”, “Beautifully Depressed” and “Where I’m Going”. “Doobinterlude” provides an instrumental break from the sonic assault you previously absorbed before setting them of fire again with even more classics including, “The Seed” and ‘Dog Tired”. This is an album that we listen to pretty much weekly and it was awesome to have it on full blast when grilling these mammoth burgers and enjoying this killer beer.