When I saw the Field Roast Hand-Formed Burgers at the grocery store last week, I openly gasped. I’ve been a fan of Field Roast for years. (Their apple sage sausage is one of my all-time favorite vegan specialty products, and their frankfurter is the best hot dog on the market.) About a year and a half ago I’d heard that they’d started selling burgers at a Seattle stadium, and it made me almost wish that I was a sports fan, and oh, yeah, that I lived in the Pacific Northwest.
The burgers started appearing in stores this past summer, but like everything else, it takes a while for new things to hit the middle of the country (unless you live in Chicago, maybe). I emailed my grocery store asking if they’d carry them, but they simply wrote back that they would pass the request on to the person ordering. They also said that I could order a case of the burgers, but spending about a hundred bucks on burgers seemed like quite a bit more of a commitment than I wanted to make.
Cut to last week when I was wandering down the freezer aisle waiting for my sandwich to be made in the deli, when there it was – with a chorus of angels singing from over the sound system. (Field Roast must pay extra for that musical back-up.)
It happened to be an abnormally warm fall day, and so David and I picked up some buns and fired up the outdoor grill that night for dinner. (Since then, I’ve also cooked them in my cast iron grill pan, and they turned out equally well.)
Straight out of the package, the burgers are noticeably greasy. I’d seen folks complaining about the amount of fat (24 grams) on Facebook, but the people at Field Roast noted that for a juicy burger some fat is necessary.
The burgers are wheat-based and also include barley, carrots, and celery. David and I topped the burgers with stone ground mustard, pickles, and onions. (I don’t like to get too heavy with burger toppings, so as to not cover up the flavor.) True to their word, the burger was juicy and the outer edges had a slight crisp, crackly crunch to them.
The flavor of the burgers is both similar and dissimilar to their sausages. It doesn’t have the exact same flavor as any one of them, but I’d say it’s in the same wheelhouse. For me, this made it one of the best vegan burgers around with its flavorful bite and chewy texture. For David, he said the flavor was too specific and strong, and he’ll remain firmly in the Gardein Beefless Burgers camp.
At $7.99/package for four burgers, I don’t foresee it being something I buy all the time (especially since I can make my own seitan pretty easily for very little cost). However, sometimes it’s nice to have a convenience food when you’re headed to a cookout or just want something tasty, filling, and fast. This burger hits the mark for me.