There’s nothing more all-American than a burger. In this series, we ask chefs to divulge the mouthwatering details behind their favorite restaurant burgers. Today, we chat with Chef Dane Baldwin of The Diplomat. Baldwin will be among nine featured chefs at the fifth annual Moveable Feast event at the Milwaukee Public Museum.
When it comes to burgers, Chef Dane Baldwin says he's pretty wild about them. In fact, he's open to a variety of different types.
"For me, a burger is so many different things … and each one can be extremely different," says Dane Baldwin of The Diplomat. "What constitutes a burger? A bun, typically a beef patty, and cheese. I never eat a burger without cheese. And I could go into the whole burger to bread ratio, but I just really like cheese burgers."
"I think the Kopp’s Burger is great. Mazo’s has a great burger. And Solly’s … with the half pound of butter ... I love that, too. There’s a nostalgia point there. But when you don’t have that nostalgic piece, I think it’s about really great ingredients. I like mushroooms, Swiss cheese, blue cheese, bacon. Maybe it’s on a sesame seed bun… the one bun I’m just not a fan of is the pretzel roll."
"But there are all sorts of ways to envision a great burger. I haven’t been to Goodkind on burger night, and I feel like that’s probably just sinful, because I’m pretty sure their burger is great. Their approach embodies everything I’m saying here… it’s about great toppings, great flavors and really good ingredients. That’s also how we approach our burger here at The Diplomat."
Favorite burger: Kopp’s cheeseburger
"When I go to Kopp’s, I know exactly what I’m getting … a messy burger with grease soaking through the bag. It’s a tried and true experience. I enjoyed it as a child. I enjoy doing it with my family."
"We probably frequent Kopp’s the most, since there are so many things there that keep everyone in the family happy. For me, it’s about the whole trip. It’s about my kids knowing exactly where we’re going before we even tell them. And it’s about sitting outside and having a burger and knowing it’s going to be followed with a shake, malt or custard."
Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club.
When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.