Wolfburgers – tasty breakfast, burgers and burritoes in Argentine

May 31, 2012 1 comment

Wolfburgers is a very friendly diner that serves up good quantities of tasty food in a clean, if aged, environment for a fair price.  The food was made fresh every time that I walked in and while that probably added a few minutes to the time it took to get me out the door they were still quite rapid in their performance.

 

For my first visit I asked the older waitress for a bit of advice on what she would recommend.  While she hadn’t had the burritos she knew they were very popular and proceeded to tell me that the $3.75 Big Breakfast Burrito comes with 3 eggs, 2 sausage patties and hashbrowns.  The food was served very hot, the cook wore a ball cap(which I like for health reasons) and while he was a young guy he was trying to bring back old diner shop talk ala “You want that walking?” aka to-go.  I was offered hot or mild salsa, opted for the hot and it was spicy but didn’t set my hair on fire.  The burrito wasn’t too salty, was very filling and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

  • Flavor: 5
  • Value: 4

For my second visit I enjoyed a half order of biscuits and gravy and 2 eggs sunny side up.  The biscuits and gravy were around

$2.50 and the eggs were $1 each.  I should have ordered some toast to dab up the egg yolks but I wanted to keep it under $5 so I worked with what I had.  First of all, this is the way biscuits and gravy should be, thick and full of chunks of sausage, just yearning to clog my heart and arteries.  But damnit, it tasted GOOD and it’s not like I have a heart attack on a platter every month.  This was a treat and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  The cook made the eggs runny just as ordered.

I didn’t try to get this meal to go as it’s just not a type of food that lends itself to travel.  Frankly, I love diners, so it’s not suprising that I found myself tipping the waitresses on two of my three visits and questioning myself why I wasn’t tipping on my third visit.  There were a few other diners this time, some old guys chatting with the waitress and then some guys stopped by from the railroad for an early lunch.  Banter floated back and forth as I cleaned my plate and again lamented my lack of toast to swab up every last drop of the egg yolk and gravy.
  • Flavor: 5
  • Value: 4

 

For my final sampling I visited shortly after lunch on a Tuesday and the place was mostly deserted.  It was easy to get parking or a seat every time I went into Wolfburgers.  I once again got a very pleasant welcome to the restaurant and I ordered up a cheeseburger for $3.50.  I hit up the bathroom while the food cooked and was disappointed to find that there was no soap or paper towels.  I can only hope that the employees are washing their hands somewhere behind the counter.  Since I got the burger to go I was asked what I’d need, “Mustard, ketchup, mayo?”.
The bun was fluffy and good quality that the cook had sliced in half, buttered and then toasted on the grill adding a nice crunchy texture to the burger.  Dressings were offered on the side of the burger so I could choose from the tomato slices, pickles and large onion slices.  These onions tasted like real onions with wonderful bite not fast food onions that smell like onions but you soon forget are even in the same zip code as your burger.  The hamburger had been glued to the top of the bun with the large, thick, slice of cheese and the patty itself had been grilled until it was lightly seared but not dry.  It was indeed cooked medium-well and I know that’s sacrilege to some people but it didn’t bother me.  As friendly as this place is I find it hard to believe they wouldn’t cook it a bit less if you asked them politely.  I was just pleased to get such a large beef patty with good quality meat that didn’t have tiny bone chunks or ligament bits in it like so many chain restaurants these days.  I had asked for some mustard to go with the burger but after a few bites I realized that I wasn’t going to even need that, the burger was already balanced and I didn’t need any more bite.  By the way, don’t let the picture make you think the patty is small or the bun over-sized.  I’m just not that great of a photographer.
  • Flavor: 5
  • Value: 4

 

Overall, I couldn’t recommend this diner more.  Yes, I am a little unhappy about the men’s bathroom soap situation and I will be sure to pay attention to the cook’s hands the next time I stop in but the food is delicious, affordable and it’s an easy in and out.  They’re open 7-5 Monday through Saturday and they close at 1 on Sunday.  There are also lunch burritos available and many variations on the cheeseburger that cost a buck or two more.

I will also mention to you that Wolfburgers is in a neighborhood where stop signs and even parked cars are viewed as mere minor obstacles and I frequently find myself having to avoid getting into a traffic accident.  In one case, a friend’s car was struck while she was parked on the side of the road and thankfully was not in it.  To my eye it’s not a shady neighborhood it’s just not a particularly safe place to drive at times.

Edited 5/31/2012 at 3:47PM to add Urbanspoon HTML

Wolfburger's Cafe on Urbanspoon

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Lucky Dragon – Fast, Tasty and Cheap in North Kansas City

Lucky Dragon is your standard Chinese restaurant, providing flavorful inexpensive food in a hurry.  They have a large selection of lunch specials that you’ll find for under $5 all 7 days of the week between 11 and 2:30.  Additionally they have some okay appetizers that you can get at any time of the day.

On my first visit I enjoyed the Cho Cho Chicken which is just your basic chicken on a stick for $4.25.  You get 6 slightly sweet and pretty salty servings of chicken that was a little greasy but probably better for you than most chicken sandwiches you’d get at a fast food joint.  They tasted better when I doused the chicken in the hot mustard that was provided without me asking for it.  Every time I visited they did a good job of providing the essential condiments of duck sauce(what is that stuff anyhow?), hot mustard and soy sauce along with sufficient napkins.  By the time I was finished eating all 6 of the chicken sticks my jaw was sore so the meat isn’t exactly tender.

Flavor: 3

Value: 3
Two days after Christmas I stopped in late in the afternoon to pick up 3 Spring Rolls for $3.50.  The gentleman told me it would be 5 to 10 minutes before they were ready.  The food was out in 8 minutes and during that time I realized that Fox News is more annoying when the reception is poor.  Somehow my hyper-vigilant brain can tune out the 24 hour news cycle when the drone is consistent but when the satellite mutes intermittently I can’t help but watch the morons yammer on.  The place was fairly dead, chairs were up on the tables and no one was eating inside.  Another family was waiting for their takeout and seemed entranced by the TV despite the bad reception.  Perhaps they were just trying to ignore one another like I do when I’m around family and the TV made an excellent excuse.  Perhaps I’m projecting instead of reviewing a restaurant.

As for the food, the spring rolls were delightful.  They had a flaky crunchy crust, were served very hot and had a lightly spiced blend of cabbage and carrots.  I devoured the food without pause or any need for the sauces provided.

Flavor: 5

Value: 2.5

 

I ordered a small serving of Hot N Sour soup on a third visit and wasn’t very pleased.  True, it was only $2 but the soup was overcooked.  The ingredients were mostly falling apart and the button mushrooms looked suspiciously

liked they came right out of a can.  But there’s nothing faster than getting soup at a restaurant and it was spicy and plentiful.  I should mention that I stopped by during the work week at lunch hour and the place was jumping.  The parking lot was a little bit busy and 70% full.  The seats in the restaurant were 100% full for the buffet and a fair amount of working class guys were shoveling it in.  That doesn’t bother me a bit, but it is busy around then so if you want to eat in plan accordingly.

Flavor: 2

Value: 3.5

 

 

For my fourth visit I enjoyed Princess Chicken as a lunch special.  It’s a large serving of  fried rice, choice of crab rangoon or egg roll, choice of hot n sour or egg drop soup and the entree.  I again chose the Hot n Sour soup but was pleased to find that it was a nice blend of tofu, canned mushrooms, bamboo, egg drop and pork.  The soup had a nice cayenne heat that tingled my lips a bit and got my nose running.  There were a few chunks of what I think of as oriental mushrooms, they weren’t shitake but they were flavorful and chewy in a good way unlike the again present canned button mushrooms.

The crab rangoon was large and had decent tasting cream cheese in it but no chunks of even imitation crab just a hint of crab flavoring to taunt me.

More importantly the princess chicken was quite nice.  It was served very hot and the light sauce was sweet with a spicy aftertaste.  The sauce really surprised me as I’m used to a sauce this dark being  syrupy and overpowering.  The vegetables were lightly sauteed but still crisp and flavorful.  Unfortunately some pieces were too large for someone to eat with just the light fork and spoon provided.  I was in my traditional garb, overalls, but if I had stopped in with casual business attire I would have been pissed at the food I ended up dribbling on myself due to it’s chunk size.  Chunk Size would probably be a good name for a punk band, just a side note.  Despite that small gripe, I enjoyed the veggies being allowed to have to their flavors come out and the balance of onions, broccoli and carrots worked well with the amount of breaded meat and rice provided.

The amount of food provided was enough to give me two and a half meals.  In this case, the leftovers didn’t taste better than the original meal but I still wolfed them down so that’s saying something.

Flavor: 4

Value: 5

Speed: 5

 

Almost all of your traditional Chinese dishes are available in the lunch special format although some of the more popular ones do range up to $5.25 like General Tso’s Chicken, Orange Chicken or Sweet & Sour Shrimp.

Overall, I recommend Lucky Dragon to you if you’re just north of Downtown/River Market area.  The food is just what this blog was designed to locate: fast, tasty and inexpensive.  You could stop at the national chain down the street and get a crappy burger that looks like mortar scraped onto a bun and send your cash out of town.  Instead buy some food that you can recognize, have leftovers and the profits go to a guy who is renting/owning a house in KC, paying taxes and living the American dream.  You win, he wins and I win.  Who doesn’t love winning?  Cats, I suppose.  They seem like they’re above all our silly games.  But they kill mice and that makes them okay in my book.

Lucky Dragon Chinese on Urbanspoon

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April 18, 2012 1 comment

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