Bend Over, Abigail Mae

Fans of Patton Oswalt (he was the voice of Ratatouille, you know) might recognize the title for this post. Today, because I’m the daddy, and it was an impeccable crystalline warm fall day- with all those fleeting perfections of smell and light and feeling that fill one at once with both pure distilled joy of life and sad dread at its evanescence- a meal to celebrate the exact intersection of those two emotions.

At Daniel‘s Bistro DB in the city he makes the famous “DB Burger” and I made it my mission to rival it in pure sensuous fabulosity (if not refined elegance.) Having a bit of the pâté mixture left in the fridge, I seasoned organic ground beef with salt, pepper, and garlic and stuffed the orotund patties with a generous dollop of same. Then, chopping the bacon cracklings also remaining from pâté fabrication, I studded the outside of the burgers with them and got to work on the fries- sweet potatoes, fried twice, then salted, that is. Once the burgers were done, I caramelized leeks in the combination of beef, pork, and duck fat that the burgers had rendered out and then mopped up the last of it with organic whole wheat English muffins.

The toppings were thus HP Sauce, leeks, and fresh-picked frisée, with a good raw-fermented dill pickle on the side. Crunchy, sweet fries, insanely decadent burger, crisp, tangy, and sweet condiments. Not a drop of ketchup or mustard to be found, and I must say that this burger succeeded in every imaginable way, including some I’m not going into here. We opened a 1998 Gros Noré Bandol, which is a great burger wine, with hair and fruit and depth and the focus to cut through the fat and scour the cholesterol from your arteries. This wine, for the price, is a must-buy, but you do have to sit on it for 8-10 years to reap the benefits.

A final tasting note on the Chambolle-Musigny from last night: left on the counter overnight with a cork in the bottle, the last glass has opened up into a rounder, darker-flavored wine that suggests more time will bring this to a much nicer place and indeed make it an excellent bargain.

6 comments to Bend Over, Abigail Mae

  • Zoomie

    Peter, Peter, Peter! I can’t _believe_ what a decadent and wonderful burger that must have been! I am at once inspired and aghast – thank heaven for the red wine. Man, that all sounded SO good!

  • peter barrett

    It was better than you can imagine. Well worth the days it shaved off our lives. A moment of pure bliss, suspended outside of time.

  • Zoomie

    Yeah, plus they only add those extra days that you lost at the end when you’re old and creaky anyway – better to enjoy it now while you’re still young enough to digest such a rich meal! :-)

  • peter barrett

    That’s exactly what I said. Plus, when you have a garden and make it the center of your diet I think departures like these are absolutely fine.

  • Heather

    Oh, man – Oswalt’s diatribe about the “guantlet of angry food” at Black Angus is one of my favorite comedy bits of all time.

    Being young and fit does grant us some allowances, no?

  • peter

    Mine too… and yes, it does.

Yours Truly



I'm a painter who happens to also spend a lot of time growing, making, and writing about food. I'm particularly interested in the intersection of frugal peasant cooking techniques and haute improvisation. And I have a really great personality.

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