Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Kool Bloo Burger

1. Kool Bloo Burger
117 6th Avenue @ Broome St

If there is ever a day that I join PETA, I promise you now, it'll only be because the apocalypse is coming. Not because it's a lifelong goal I plan to check off eventually, but because I'd like to eat pounds upon pounds of ground beef in front of them. Why? Possibly because I'm an overly sadistic, blood-leeching porker. Or, I just really have a thing for burgers.

Assuming you like to think of me as the latter, I like to assume burgers are also nutritionally beneficial. Hence, my consistent desire to substitute them as meals.

Kool Bloo offers the same thing you see everywhere. Burgers, fries, shakes, wings, grease and grime. Painted in a disgustingly tacky, yet attention getting safety-orange, it beacons all hungry souls to the 5 x 30 ft oddity of a burger joint.

But as obscure is the size and shape of the Kool Bloo, so is their way of advertising products. Nowhere to be found, or unless I'm blind, is there an actual complete menu. Posted about the area are paper print-outs of meal specials and $7.95 chicken strips, but nowhere was there a damned list.

Luckily, ingenuity kicked in as I found the take-out menu and proceeded to skim across the twenty something burgers. Burgers inspired by U.S. states, politicians and even King Edwardo (who the fuck?) made me question the principles Kool Bloo had in mind.

Were they actually trying to create fine, healthy meals (as said in the company's mission statement), or pile whatever ingredients they found in the local supermarket?

But who am I kidding, all of the combinations made sense. Discretely altered renditions of each other, prices run between $7-13 for an 8oz. patty. Elsewhere on the menu you'll find one-too-many chicken burgers, Philly Cheese Steaks, Wings, Salads and all sorts of typical grub normally carried at Steak & Shake and sports bars around the country.

My fellow patrons seemed far and few, a jumbled mess of hodge podge individuals lost between the West Village, Soho, Noho and No-No.

A business man scarfing down a burger, a couple of pre-teens fresh out of Forever 21 and a stout and scruffy looking gentleman kept me company at the 'Bloo.

The burger, along with the fries, were a stimulating combo - but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of bringing back memories of Kobe beef, fine dining in Europe or favorite meals, I reflected on nostalgia of the past. In school cafeterias.

Its patty was well charred, tender and quite juicy - but peppery and dissimilar from beef. What different parts of the cow were melded together, in order to form such patty, I questioned profoundly after my meal.

Vegetables were simple, average and fresh. The cheese, American, uninspiring and banal.

As for the fries, the Ore-Ida style was in full swing. Artificially crispy on the outside, un-potato like in the inside, and sprinkled with that seasoned salt & paprika mixture so prevalent in school cafeterias, I couldn't help but think of the past.

On such a windy day, why I ordered a vanilla shake, I have no idea. But good thing I did. Ideal in thickness and subtle yet noticeable in flavor, it served well as a burger-bite sidekick.

Though the experience was not the finest, or the menu the most refined, I left a satisfied man. It's filling for what it offers, but really only that. Nothing special, nothing worth coming back for necessarily, other than the Huckleberry shake if you truly care.

For the price you pay ($17 in all), there's far more options out there.

Be wise, be aware and use common sense. The place is painted safety-orange for a reason. Not to beckon you towards it for a bite, but a warning to all that Kool Bloo just isn't all that cool.

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