New York: Bento Burger (Now Closed)

 

Described as an American-Japanese Roadhouse, Bento Burger is a New York East Village restaurant that goes beyond the typical burger and fries. The menu boasts of Kobe Beef, Thai Chicken, and Japanese Hambuugu burgers, along with homemade sauces such as Pineapple Ketchum and Ginger Salsa. For vegetarians you can enjoy Portobello or Garden Vegetable with avocado aioli or Mixed Seafood with Smoked Thai Chile Sauce.

MCCN had the pleasure of sitting down to conversation and a meal with owner Hayne Suthon and restaurant designer Miguel Calvo. Inspired by the 80’s classic movie Blade Runner, the interior design was created by Calvo himself, his vision was inspired by his time in Japan and his many adventures he experienced. Along with the custom furniture and ceiling treatments, the restaurant displays the great wall of graffiti which contributes to bringing the Blade Runner theme to life and was painstakingly created by famed artist Gaber Gabe, Justin Johnson, Katrina Cebek and Todd Sutherland.

 

With so many things to choose from we began our meal with the Bento Platter Appetizer consisting of Chicken Wings, Fried Calamari, Summer Rolls, Chicken Spring Rolls, Sesame Noodles, along with Chipotle Thai Chile. We also enjoyed the Tempura Green Beans with Wasabi Aioli. As the evening progressed it was time for the main attraction. With so many to choose from we finally settled on the Thai Chicken with spicy papaya relish and the Japanese Hambuguu Burger with barbeque sauce partially out of curiosity, I had to find out what is Hambuguu? Thanks to Steaki.com I got my answer. Hambagu (No, it is not a misspelling, it is spelled Hambuguu on the Bento Burger menu) is a popular Japanese take on a western hamburger consisting of ground meat with finely sliced onions, egg and breadcrumbs savored with a range of spices. Each dish came with Japanese pickles, mango slaw, and Bento chips and was served in a Japanese style Bento Box. As mentioned earlier Bento Burger is not your typical burger joint. A Bento Box is a way of life in Japanese dining; it is used for serving meals at home or at sit-down restaurants. Bento Boxes have dividers and some are stacked with a number of layers.

If you are ever visiting New York City or already reside in the city that never sleeps and you get a hankering for a Japanese twist on an American favorite, Bento Burger is the restaurant for you. Just don’t get hungry too early; they don’t open until 6pm. Let them know you read about Bento Burger on the Multicultural Cooking Network.

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