Let us take you from a semi-gourmet to a true burger aficionado, real quick. We have collected everything there’s worth knowing about burgers that was lying around on the internet, so you can assimilate this information and become smarter, faster, stronger… and hungrier.
Some of these facts are just mind-blowing. Don’t take our word for it, just look at Jon Stewart’s reaction:
If you ask us, a burger is one of the most delicious meals one can enjoy here on earth. The burger concept has evolved and changed throughout time, but the essence remains the same: two sesame buns, delicious ground meat and some lettuce in the middle. But have you ever thought about what the biggest burger in the world looks like or which was the first place to sell this delicious meal? We’ve got the answers for you.
Burger? Ham-Burger? What’s in a Name?
First things first: where does the name come from? Though it was made popular in America, the hamburger concept emerged from Germany, from the town of… you’ve guessed it: Hamburg. It was brought to the states by German immigrants in the 1800’s in the form of the Hamburg steak. Even though we’re now living in great times of burger bourgeoisie, it initially started off as a blue-collar meal. And no, you will not find any ham inside a hamburger. But if you’re on this website then you probably already know that.
The Burger and the Liberty Sandwich
During the Second World War, American GIs started referring to burgers as “Liberty Sandwiches” to avoid a German-sounding name, but it didn’t stick for long. Luckily. Ordering a double “liberty sandwich” with large French fries just doesn’t sound right. Right???
It’s a Man-Eat-Burger World Out There
And we’re eating loads of it. Just how much? Globally, 60% of all sandwiches eaten are burgers. If we add up all the varieties, from cheeseburgers to DeLuxe Kings, Americans wolf down 50 billion burgers per year—that means the average Jane or Joe eats 3 burgers per week. We might not be Americans here at The Burger Post, but we sure as hell are doing everything in our power to keep the European average matching.
The First-Ever Burger Joint is Still Up and Running
Would you believe that the very first place that put burgers on the menu is still in business today? The New Haven, Conn., location started out in 1895 as a small lunch wagon, and though it’s a somewhat bigger business nowadays, it’s not as glamorous as you’d expect the “First Burger Place in the World” to be. The place is called Louis’ Lunch and even to this day it stays faithful to the old-school roots, allowing only 3 condiments: mayonnaise, mustard and ketchup. Anyone who tries to smuggle in any forbidden condiment is kindly asked to leave and never return. Principles over customer retention, the old-school way. Ballsy move Louis, we like it!
By Dmadeo – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6013611
Hamburg Almost Became Veggieburg
For a brief moment in 2009, common sense became a tad less common. PETA offered the city of Hamburg $15,000 worth of veggie burgers to officially change its name to Veggieburg. Shocking as it might be, the offer was not taken seriously by city officials, and meat lovers everywhere rejoiced. Vegan and disappointed? Try this delicious chickpea burger with cashew sauce!
World’s Largest Hamburger that Money Can’t Buy
Just as the original concept, the largest burger originates from Germany, too. The mammoth hamburger weighs a whopping 1,164.2 kg and was, erm…cooked, constructed, assembled by 300 people. It now exists only in pictures, in the Guinness World Record Book, and in the memories of the creators and 3,500 attendees. But if you’d like to order something reasonably giant, check our next section.
The Largest Hamburger that Money CAN Buy
The largest burger that is available for purchase can be found at Juicy Foods, and it can be yours for a whopping $5,000. Think that’s too much? In all fairness, it’s not such a bad deal, since you’re getting a burger weighing 352.44 kg for your hard-earned dollars. But if the monster-hunger just hit you, don’t be rushing over there with a wad of cash—you need to place your order 48 hours in advance. Rome wasn’t built in a day and this giant hamburger isn’t either.
And the Award for Most Hamburgers Eaten in 3 Minutes Goes to…
We must admit, there are people out there who are more passionate about eating burgers than us here at The Burger Post. These folks are playing in a league of their own, a league we’re not even sure we want to be part of. For instance, the current record-holder for most hamburgers eaten in 3 minutes is a guy from Japan: he managed to devour 12 burgers in just 3 minutes. If anyone is wondering, he chose mayonnaise as his only permitted condiment.
The Most Expensive Hamburger
The FleurBurger 5000 is sold in the city where opulence meets madness, namely Las Vegas. Even at a whopping price tag of $5,000, it’s totally worth it, according to Robert Frank from CNBC—if you’re a billionaire, that is. It might cost the same as the world’s largest burger, but this one is by no means a value deal. The recipe includes Wagyu beef, foie gras and sliced black truffle. While the burger does come in a menu, it’s not paired with an extra large glass of Coke as you might imagine. Not by far. The $5,000 burger is served with a bottle of 1995 Petrus. Which is also one of the reasons it’s so damn expensive. We’re sure it’s delicious and burgers will probably never get any more gourmet than this. Heck, it could even be the best burger in the world, but from where we sit it surely smells like a personal financial disaster. Then again, we’re far from making our first million.
No Beef in a Burger?
Yup, all burgers in India are sold beef-less. Even McDonald’s doesn’t want to start any kind of beef (wink, wink) with the government or the population, so they’re selling lots of veggie burgers and something called the Maharaja Mac as a Big Mac alternative.
The Biggest Burger Business Around
Surprise, surprise—it’s McDonald’s with a total of 18,710 restaurants worldwide. Its most iconic sandwich is the Big Mac, but that wasn’t always its name.
The Big Mac Didn’t Always Go by This Name
One of the most iconic burgers in the world is the Big Mac. But it wasn’t an instant hit, and the name changed several times. McDonald’s tried such names as “the aristocrat” and “blue ribbon burger,” yet they crashed and burned both times. That all changed when Esther, a 21-year-old advertising secretary, stepped in and said: ‘step back guys, I’ve got this.’ Maybe not in these exact words, but she must have said something along those lines. Then she came up with the name Big Mac.
World Living Standards are Compared by Burger Prices
The Economist, one of the most prestigious economic newspapers in the world, sets up an annual report called the Big Mac Index, in which purchasing power is measured by how many Big Macs can be bought for $50. It’s a pretty big deal too, as financial decisions are taken based on the price of burgers. As a matter of fact, it’s such a huge deal that countries even tried to cheat on the Index before.
Argentina Acts the Fool with Burger Prices
Things were not going so great in Argentina in 2011, the stunning economic growth brought with itself high inflation rates too. So as any responsible government would do, they tried to swipe the dirt under the rug and keep up appearances by artificially lowering the price of Big Macs. They ended up being cheaper than smaller meals at McDonald’s. Obviously, the world was shocked and burger aficionados were delighted.
OK, now that you are a total burger connoisseur, go ahead and share the wisdom with your friends!