Last April, Kim, Lucas and I spent a couple of nights at the Radisson Martinique, located in Koreatown, NYC.
During our visit (from our distant home in Brooklyn, NY) I decided that we needed to try out the burgers at what might be the hottest, new burger shop in the city, Salvation Burger from Chef April Bloomfield (famous for The Spotted Pig among other restaurants).
Soon after our visit, a fire broke out in Salvation Burger so I held back on posting my review of the restaurant. With the restaurant reopening in early December after various delays, I felt it was finally time to post my review.
The restaurant has a limited menu with a fish sandwich, hot dog, veggie burger and the main event, two different beef burger options.
If you’re visiting this fast-casual restaurant, you might wonder or debate which burger to try.
Here are my thoughts on the burgers.
Salvation Burger is located in The Pod Hotel 51. To enter the restaurant you don’t need to go inside the hotel. A door is located to the right of hotel entrance and its pretty cool.
All of the columns (between the glass windows) are decorated with black ceramic burger tiles. The restaurant’s logo is also really awesome. It reminds me of the logo on the back of a karate uniform or Japan’s rising sun. (The servers wear shirts with the logo which I’d love to get my hands on if they were available to the public!)
The restaurant reminds me of something like a Japanese izakaya (gastropub). You walk down a couple of steps when you enter and then the room has a nice bar and open kitchen. We were luckily able to switch to a booth since the other option was low tables, with back pain inducing low stools!
While there are only five main items (there are also snacks & salads), I knew what we were ordering.
I went there to order the Salvation Burger and Classic Burger. Both burgers are what I’d consider to be on the pricey side and definitely high-end burgers. The Salvation comes in at $25 with the Classic going for $17. Fries ($7) are not included and we did order them too (and they were delicious).
Salvation Burger grinds their meat in-house and makes their own buns..
The Classic Burger:
From the looks of The Classic, it reminded me of a fast food burger (but in a good way)! Think a meatier In-N-Out or maybe a double cheeseburger from BK! OK, maybe not…
The burger has two patties (3 oz each) and comes with “housemade cheese, special sauce & pickles“.
Before digging in, I removed the pickles (Kim loved them) and cut it in half for Kim and I to share. The burger was juicy and really tasty, with the main flavors coming from the cheese and sauce. The meat wasn’t overly noticeable since the double patties are pretty thin. I actually would’ve liked to have tasted the meat more but it didn’t take away from enjoying this burger. It’s damn good!
As I ate the burger, I definitely wanted more of this cheesy masterpiece.
The Salvation Burger:
With this burger being named after the restaurant, it has big shoes to fill.
From the looks of it, the Salvation is a big meaty burger, similar to those served in steakhouses.
The burger is a huge, single 8oz pattie. I think the toppings change since I had read about a different version. Ours came with “roasted ramp butter and taleggio cheese“.
It was actually very hard to get a bite of the burger without it sliding out of the bun. The taleggio cheese was nice and melty, the ramp butter smelled amazing but it was strong- so strong that we felt it dominated the burger.
This was unfortunate since the meat was so good! I got a few bites of the burger not covered in the ramp butter (and onions or ramps) and I was really impressed. As a whole package, this wasn’t a burger that I’d want to eat a whole one of.
If I had to pick a winner, I’d definitely go with the Classic Burger. (It’s also like 30% cheaper!)
However, if I could add my .02¢, I’d recommend making the Salvation Burger with the toppings from the Classic. I think the amazing flavors would stand out while not hiding the tasty burger.
Maybe at some point in the future, April Bloomfield and crew will do a mashup and combine the two burgers to create burger perfection!
With some unique and tasty options, we couldn’t pass on dessert. We went with the Caramel Popcorn Ice Cream Pie and it was a home run!
At $8, it isn’t what I’d consider a cheap item but we found it to be quite impressive.
The pie has a thin crust with a caramel bottom layer, popcorn ice cream and then it’s topped with caramel popcorn!
Kim, Lucas and I LOVED this dessert. While the popcorn ice cream wasn’t so noticeably popcorn flavored, all of the ingredients came together to make a delicious, unique dessert. While I’m not a big fan of caramel, this was awesome- not overly sweet or gooey. I’d definitely recommend ending your meal with this!
Overall, we found our experience at Salvation Burger to be a bit uneven. I wouldn’t consider the burgers to be better than at The Spotted Pig but they have the potential with a little work to become some of the top burgers in NYC.
I’d definitely like to come back again and see if any changes are made to the menu. Hopefully the restaurant will try to better showcase the meat of the namesake burger. Sometimes less is more…
Find out more about Salvation Burger here.
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