Restaurant Name: Mint Modern Bistro & Bar
Neighborhood: Freret St.
Ambiance: Classy Industrial
Name of Burger Ordered: Kimchi Burger
Price of Burger(s): $10 (with sweet potato fries)
Size of Burger: 8 oz
On our quest for New Orleans' best burger, it would have been easy to overlook a spot known more for its rolls, bahn mi sandwiches, and pho. But we're sure glad we didn't. The Kimchi Burger (yes, you read that correctly) at Mint Modern Bistro & Bar has claimed its place in the pantheon of great New Orleans burgers, and at the time of writing is the new (and hopefully proud) owner of Burger Meet NOLA's #1 ranking. For as amazing as this burger is, it still doesn't seem to get the love and exposure that it deserves, so here's hoping our review gets the word out and gets you over to Mint ASAP.
Note: for those of you not familiar with kimchi (or maybe those that have had it but had no idea what they were eating), it is a traditional Korean side dish made from salted and fermented vegetables, most commonly napa cabbage and Korean radishes, mixed with a variety of seasonings including chili powder, scallions, garlic, and ginger.
Kimchi Burger: 9.15
How do they do it?! Feathery soft on the inside and firmly crispy on the outside (it even had the tiiiiniest little crunch!). A buttery delight that was a perfect envelope to a potentially messy interior (more on that later). Our raters' written comments were loaded with exclamation points, all caps, and words like "exquisite", "awesome", and "the best bun I've ever had".
Exploding with juiciness yet it still had a nice char on the outside (again, how do they do that?!). Our burgs came out piping hot and retained their heat well throughout the meal. The patties DID come out cooked more thoroughly than we were expecting (see Accuracy comments), but surprisingly it did not seem to have any impact on the flavor or juiciness.
Bun to Meat Ratio: 8.8
Height, check. Diameter, check. Even if a couple raters had slightly more bun than was needed, that just meant you got a bonus bite of that incredibly awesome bun. No complaints here.
Standard Toppings: 9.3
The only toppings on Mint's burger are kimchi and spicy mayo. The kimchi is truly a differentiator that distinguishes Mint's burger from any other we've had. Kimchi may sound a little gimmicky and something you'd only want when you're in the mood for something unique and different, but it actually fits perfectly and we think it would appeal to most people most of the time. It added a great kick without overpowering the burger, and the spicy mayo needs to be bottled and made available so we can enjoy it at home on anything and everything.
The Kimchi Burger comes with sweet potato fries, which we generally like no matter where we are, and these were no exception. Mint did a great job with its fries. Crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside. Regular fries come with the Bahn Mi burger (yes, there's a second burger on Mint's menu that we didn't rate!), and the raters who tried both said the regular fries were even better than the sweet potato version. All we have to say is, yum.
Mint's Taste score speaks for itself. This is the 19th burger we've rated, and at 9.3, is nearly a point higher than the next best burger on our list. And it deserves it. Expectations were low, and we left with our mind's blown. All the components of this burg just came together fantastically.
Across the board the burgers came out overcooked, but the taste was so awesome that we decided maybe Mint knew the best way to cook the burger, and the chefs were saving us from ourselves.
Few burgers in town seem to meet the $10 mark, and even when they do they often don't come with fries (lame!). At $10 for the Kimchi Burger and sweet potato fries, Mint's offering would score high in the Value category even if it was just a "good" burger. But given how incredible this burger is it's simply an unbelievable value, and one that may be tough to beat in this category even for the other outstanding burgers we still have left to rate.
Overall nothing much to complain about. Our server was a bit slow and inattentive at times, but the place was completely packed on a Tuesday night and maybe they weren't expecting the crowds.
If you're still reading this, we clearly didn't do a good enough job of describing this burger because you should be on your way to Mint NOW! Additionally, with Mint Modern, Company Burger, and High Hat all clustered within 3-4 blocks of each other, the Freret Corridor is providing New Orleans burger lovers more quality burgers per block than any other area of the city!
Want to see how Mint ranks? Check out the Burger Meet rankings.
Want to see how these rank overall? Check out our RANKINGS.