Restaurant Name: Food Drunk NOLA
Ambiance: Food Truck
Name of the Burger Ordered: The Original King
Price of the Burger(s): $11 (+ $6 for Duck Fat Fries)
Size of the Burger: 7 oz
Temperature: Medium - Med-Rare
It's Mardi Gras time in NOLA, which means a bunch of things: parades, beads, high school bands, carrying a koozie around for two weeks straight, leaving work early to avoid traffic, and letting out-of-town friends crash on your floor. But most importantly it means...KING CAKE. We have heard some people say, "Oh, it's too sweet..." or "Oh, I get sick of it after a couple of bites..." To those MONSTERS we say, "PASS ME YOUR SLICE AND GET OUT OF MY FACE." Seriously, how can you NOT like King Cake?! It's basically a danish/donut/piece of sweet bread smothered in frosting/glaze/colored sugar. In other words: crack. So it's because of our love of King Cake that Food Drunk NOLA's King Cake Burger was particularly intriguing.
We do want to caveat the rating below with a few important points:
1) The King Cake burger is only available during "Mardi Gras" -- unfortunately this is a relatively undefined time-frame, but generally Food Drunk starts serving them around the annual King Cake Festival and stops sometime just before Fat Tuesday. In other words, we honestly can't tell you when they will stop offering them, so you'd better get one ASAP or potentially be faced with a year-long wait.
2) We found that Twitter was the best way to figure out where the food truck was going to be. They are also pretty good at responding to tweets if you want to be more proactive and actually ask them where they will be located each week.
3) We caught Food Drunk at Second Line Brewing in Mid-City and it was an AWESOME spot. Can't beat beautiful weather, burgers, and local beer. This didn't factor into our rating, but we just wanted to give Second Line a shout-out!
4) While THIS particular burger didn't get an all-star rating from us, it's one we truly feel everyone should try at least once. Additionally, EVERYTHING else that Food Drunk offers is OUTSTANDING. We ordered a couple of other burgers and sides the day that we rated the King Cake Burger and these guys/gals definitely know how to make food. It is absolutely worth the trouble and money to track them down. Plus, if nothing else it's a great photo op and a fun social media post to share with friends and family!
The Original King Cake Burger: 7.10
*Fresh house-ground Angus brisket burger and aged cheddar on a house made King Cake bun
We went into the experience thinking that the bun was an actual piece of King Cake (ok, that's a lie -- we had obviously seen photos of this burger -- but to be fair we DID think this BEFORE we saw the photos). After further discussion, we realized that this would actually have been a huge mess, so we like what Food Drunk did here. Essentially they took one of their amazingly soft, squishy, potato buns and coated it in delicious frosting + colored sugar. By itself it was quite tasty, but as part of the burger, most of us felt it was just too sweet (ignore comment above re: how we feel about people that think King Cake is too sweet). Overall it's a fun, festive effort and if you're going to make a King Cake burger, this is the bun that should be used.
Food Drunk told us that they grind their own meat (bonus points). They also told us that the patty is a brisket blend (more bonus points). The meat was incredibly juicy, but could have been seasoned just a BIT more. However, with everything going on with the burger, we felt the lack of seasoning may have been a conscious choice on the part of the Food Drunk crew.
Bun to Meat Ratio: 9.5
The King Cake Burger really shined when it came to bun-to-meat ratio. While this is something that many take for granted, trust us, a bad ratio can destroy even the tastiest of patties + toppings. A couple of us even gave this burg a perfect 10 in this category (and we don't throw those around). Meat met bun all along the perimeter, and it squished down nicely in our hands (and mouths).
Standard Toppings: 7.0
The only topping on the King Cake burger was cheddar cheese. Our crew actually had a pretty lengthy discussion about what other toppings we would have liked to have seen, but no matter what options we threw out, we always came back to the fact that it's a busy burger and simple is probably better. Honestly, even the cheese was a little lost with everything else hitting our taste buds, so we're not sure there's much that could have improved things in this area.
We went with the Duck Fat Fries and were not disappointed. We initially scoffed a bit at the $6 price tag, but once we put one of these hot, crispy, thick slabs of potato soaked in duck fat in our mouths, all was forgiven. These were without a doubt some of the best fries any of us had ever tasted. Additionally they are SO rich, that even if you're not, you can split an order with a friend and leave completely satisfied. There are also three dipping sauce choices -- trust us and go with the Cajun Ranch.
The sweet + salty combo usually works, but the King Cake Burger pushes the concept a little bit too far. We aren't really sure if this burger is trying to be the best thing you've never tried, or simply a novelty to put a smile on the face of any Mardi Gras (and King Cake) lover. In the end we're not sure it matters. Put it on the bucket list and go Treat. Yo. Self.
Right on the money.
The King Cake burger comes in at $11, and if you add the Duck Fat Fries (which you must), you're staring out at almost $20. However, as mentioned above, you can share the fries, which brings the price down a bit. Honestly, you're really paying for the novelty and the experience, so we couldn't complain too much. Plus, despite our average rating, Food Drunk uses high quality ingredients across the board -- and we never mind paying for that.
Service on-site was nothing short of red-carpet. The Food Drunk crew was super appreciative of our business, incredibly friendly, flagged us down when our orders were ready, and even offered to cut the burgers in half for us so we could share them. The only reason for the less than perfect score was their (lack of) responsiveness on Twitter. I know it's unlikely they have a social media team manning the account at all times, but if you're a food truck and your business depends on people knowing where you are, make sure you're checking your notifications regularly.
As mentioned earlier, we think the King Cake Burger is something you only need to try once. It's a solid effort on the part of Food Drunk, and definitely makes for a great Mardi Gras memory. So while it's unlikely we would come back for this burger (hence the low rating on returnability) we would 100% come back any time for literally anything else on the menu. To uphold the integrity of our rating system, we had to be honest about the average-ness of THIS particular burger. That being said, do yourself a favor and grab some friends, track down Food Drunk, and order one of everything (including the King Cake Burger if you've never tried it!).
Want to see how Food Drunk NOLA ranks? Check out our overall Burger Meet rankings.
Want to see how these rank overall? Check out our RANKINGS.