There’s more to Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s ABC Kitchen than freshly foraged Greenmarket vegetables — namely, there is this $19 Akaushi cheeseburger installed on the menu just last week. It’s a big, fatty flavor bomb made from eight ounces of Wagyu beef (house-ground chuck and short rib) raised on a Texas ranch. According to cattle-company propaganda, as well as an earnest waiter who was dressed like Jethro Bodine, Akaushi (a.k.a. Japanese Red) is renowned for its high levels of monounsaturated fat and CLA, or conjugated linoleic acid. In short, it might be better for you than the ABC Kitchen crudité plate.
That’s not all: It comes on a grill-toasted Eli’s bun with a fine grating of Cato Corner Bloomsday cheese, an ingenious arugula-basil-and-chive mayo, and Satur Farms jalapeños pickled in Champagne vinegar, all of which might add up to the best burger-condiment combination since the New Mexican green chile met the individually plastic-wrapped slice of cheese. The herb-dappled fries are good, too.