Earlier this year I was fortunate enough to shoot an episode of one of my favorite local TV shows – Check Please, Bay Area, which airs on KQED/PBS. I had the opportunity to highlight one of my favorite burger spots ever – Jack’s Prime – and try some other amazing dishes along the way. This is my first time doing food-related work on television and it was a blast. Check out the full episode below!
In the realm of burgers there are real burgers, you know, the one’s made with beef or occasionally bison or something fancy, and chicken burgers, and veggie burgers, and then there are…turkey burgers. The forever less loved patty, standing lonely from the outside looking in, will only get ordered by those avoiding red meat, watching their cholesterol, or suffering from generally broken taste buds. No one in the history of the world woke up, mapped out their dinner plans, and said “damn, I am REALLY craving a turkey burger…”. Pause. Enter – Jack’s Prime.
Full disclosure, Jack’s Prime in San Mateo is my favorite burger spot in the bay area, and it’s one of the few places I will return to eat at at least once a month. Part of the appeal of return visits for me is a rotating cast of monthly burger specials, and for the month of November it’s their take on a turkey burger called the Gobble Gobble. The Gobble Gobble burger is a Diestel Ranch turkey patty topped with cheddar cheese, apple cranberry chutney, house made stuffing, romaine lettuce, and mayo on an onion bun. Yes, it is Thanksgiving dinner in a single bite, and don’t worry, there are potatoes-a-plenty on the side.
Many of the complaints about turkey burgers – they’re bland, or dry, or boring – all get laid to rest with the Gobble Gobble. Through the clever use of melty cheddar cheese, herbaceous stuffing, and sharply sweet chutney, you never have a chance to lament the fact that there are no glisteny red juice puddles muddying your plate. All of the elements work in perfect harmony here, with the seasoning on the patty being a bit understated to leave room for the powerful condiments to do their job. The chutney having both cranberries and apples helps add a sweet and tart component that plays with the overall flavor much like caramelized onions, with the stuffing adding a fluffy bounce and deep onion richness.
When you get a bite with both cranberry and stuffing (which is most of the time) you are immediately transported to Thanksgiving dinner in the most deliciously comfortable way imaginable. Even the onion bun, which is the most minuscule of modifications to their usual burger bun, emulates that tasty soft dinner roll you use to sop up all the gravy at the end of the years best meal.
If you find yourself abruptly out of leftovers and fiending for one last Thanksgiving fix, the Gobble Gobble will be available through the end of the month. If you’ve missed out and/or are completely sick of cranberries and turkey, you can join me in waiting with fingers crossed for an encore appearance next November.
Jack’s Prime is located at 3723 S El Camino Real in San Mateo, CA, and are also home to insanely perfect sweet potato fries, the best garlic fries outside of AT&T park, and the most beautifully balanced peppery sweet BBQ sauce you’ll have anywhere not serving brisket.