Almost every time the subject of where to eat in Darien arises, the name Ten Twenty Post is mentioned. Some have also recommended the burger and the last time I ate their House Burger was two years ago…it was time to give it a re-try. When I arrived around noon the twelve tables on the rear terrace were beginning to fill and without a cloud in the sky, all of the umbrellas were open and people were either looking for full sun or hiding in the shade.
The server informed me that the “House Burger on Soft Roll” was served with Gruyere cheese (the current website states Jarlsberg cheese), lettuce, tomato and onion, with a side of French fries. I asked if they could hold the lettuce, tomato and onion and add a couple of strips of bacon. I also asked that it be prepared medium-rare. As I sipped my water I found I was in a very small minority, almost everyone was drinking beer or wine. It was a festive mid-week lunch for many.
The burger arrived. The exterior of the patty had a good sear, the cheese was nicely melted but the two strips of bacon were just thrown on top as one…both on one side of the patty, not a lot of care in its placement. The bun, which was a basic, soft bakery bun, was nicely grilled. There was a good sized mound of fries and several slices of B&B pickles.
I cut the burger in half. My guess would place the weight in the 5 oz. range, and the size was more on the thin versus thick side. It was prepared a little beyond medium, much more than my requested medium rare. The grind was very compressed, and there was very little juice escaping. I first tasted the meat, it had a good level of beefiness, very good flavor. A taste of the bacon and Gruyere cheese gave me a different impression, both were on the bland side, and the bun was also not very flavorful. A bite of the combination gave a beefy flavor with the other ingredients adding little to the dish. There was just a hint of juiciness in my first taste but it became drier with each succeeding bite. By the time I started the second half, the burger was very dry. The fries were nicely cooked and seasoned and the B&B pickle slices were excellent. The cost of the burger was $17, which was high for its quality.
Overall it was a flavorful patty that was overcooked, causing it to dry out, with bland toppings. I previously rated the burger a “6” on my 1-10 scale, but given the blandness of all of the items (with the exception of the meat) I now rate the House Burger at Ten Twenty a “5”.