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 Jonathan Manyo of Morel and Raw Bar. Manyo will be among nine featured chefs at the fifth annual Moveable Feast event at the Milwaukee Public Museum.
Chef Jonathan Manyo says it’s tough to define exactly what makes up the ultimate burger.
"The ultimate burger is kind of a mystery to me," he says. "Because every ingredient needs to be perfectly balanced with the others. If you change the fat ratio of your beef, you have to change the bun. If you change the type of tomato you have to adjust the seasoning.
"I guess for that reason I like burgers without too much going on. Cheese and fried onions is fine by me. I like when people have been doing it the same way for a real long time. Repetition leads to perfection, as they say in our industry."
Favorite burgers: Kopp’s, Solly’s and Oscars
Incidentally, he has a tough time picking just one favorite.
"Kopp's was a hang out for me when I was growing up, so that is my sentimental favorite," he says. "I love the new KRK burger."
As for Solly’s, he says: "My mother only let me eat there once a year growing up, so that became my birthday meal. You have to get a double burger to get the butter/beef ratio right, a single burger there is more butter than beef."
"If I was going to get a burger right now I would probably go to Oscars for the Big O burger. It’s so good."
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.