Restaurant Name: Cowbell
Ambiance: Upscale Truck Stop
Name of the Burger Ordered: Locally World Famous Cowbell Burger
Price of the Burger(s): $13.95 + $1 for cheese
Size of the Burger: 7 oz
Temperature: Cooked to Order
Cowbell has built a reputation as one of the top burgers in New Orleans, and most of our squad has been to Cowbell many times. That being said, Burger Meet strives to never bring past-visit bias into the current-day rating, and I think we stuck to that here. We don't play favorites, but after ranking it, they've earned it. OH so close to #1, and certainly worth the trip. So if you've got a full tank of gas and a full wallet, head on out to Cowbell for the aptly named Locally World Famous Burger.
Locally World Famous Cowbell Burger: 7.89
Buttery but not greasy. Toasted but not dry. Soft but firm (hold on, is that possible?). Every rater gave the bun an 8, but while it was certainly very good, we've had better.
Cowbell nailed the cow part. Very juicy grass-fed burger with great flavor. It wasn't overly seasoned, but it doesn't have to be when your meat can speak for itself!
Bun to Meat Ratio: 7.3
The patty's height was perfect, so each bite in the center was delightful. But take a look at the pictures below and you'll see the dreaded bun halo!! Cowbell, kick that burger up from 7 oz to 8 oz and you probably get a 10 in bun-to-meat ratio!
Standard Toppings: 6.5
Lots to say here. The veggies were fresh, and the bites WITH them were great. But we've had cherry tomato slices in our garden salad that were bigger than these itty-bittys. Or maybe we're just used to hormone infused produce. Who knows. The onions are raw and strong, so make sure you're an onion lover (not just a liker) before keeping them on. The ketchup and agogo sauce that accompany the burger are homemade and bring a unique Cowbell stamp to the burger (but also adds to its hipster vibe). Some loved it, some opted for good ol' Hunt's, and one rater may have enjoyed the sauce so much that he was spotted eating it with a spoon afterwards.
These fries were definitely a crowd pleaser, but we all agreed they lacked...a little something...that kept them from that rarefied "killer fry" territory. They were fresh cut and came out piping hot. But the absence of any kind of seasoning, and the presence of one too many burnt crispies (you know the type...straight from the bottom of the batch...ick). So in summary (because we've clearly gone on too long about the fries considering the score) Cowbell does a great basic fry. Clean up a few of the weaknesses and they've got serious potential.
This burger came together FABULOUSLY, with some raters even giving it the elusive perfect 10! That alone makes it worth a try, because as you've probably seen, we're pretty damn picky.
Our group loves to push the limits of each burger joint and order several medium rare burgs. Cowbell was up to the challenge, and delivered. Where they may have actually missed the mark (thus costing them the perfect 10) was delivering a slightly TOO medium, medium burger. Maybe they were so focused on nailing the more delicate temps that they left a couple of the more well-done options on the grill too long. All in all, a solid effort though.
Ok. So if the components we consider for value = base burg price + add on toppings cost + fry inclusion + misc expenses, the only thing Cowbell has going for it is the fry inclusion. $14 for a base burger is STEEP. That's Mondo and Le Petite territory, and Cowbell ain't that type of restaurant. On top of that, you really can't start things out at $14 when you're charging extra for cheese, bacon, and everything else. It's even $0.25 for pickles (no words)! All that said, when you're this tasty, you still get to stay on the north side of 5 for value.
To earn a 10 in the service category, you need to charm and delight us. Doesn't have to be Galatoire's level charm, but think of the "naturally N'awlins" places that put an extra smile on your face. Well Cowbell brings that "WOW" factor. So why no 10? Well, they made some rookie mistakes (and as far as we know, this place isn't anywhere near rookie level). Any former waiter knows you do the "2-minute check-in" to see if everything is satisfactory after the food is brought out. There was no 2, 5, or even 10 minute check-in. Many, MANY minutes went by without so much as a stop to refill our bevvies, which didn't go over well with the group.
We clearly want this burger in our mouths again, but would definitely visit more frequently at a lower price. Especially since it takes a seemingly never-ending drive to the Parish line to get there. Bonus points for a sense of humor (except in reality we don't give ACTUAL bonus points). The pen they give you to sign your bill says "this pen is stolen from" (see pic below). Oh, and for the record, we didn't steal one!
Want to see how Cowbell ranks? Check out our overall Burger Meet rankings.
Want to see how these rank overall? Check out our RANKINGS.