Hard Rock Cafe joined forces with New Orleans native, Chef Aaron Burgau, to craft the Model0 Especial Bacon Cheeseburger; a limited-time burger that is paired with Modelo Especial, the number two imported beer in the U.S. The burger will be available at cafes around the nation through Sunday, January 3, 2016.
Hard Rock’s Modelo Especial Bacon Cheeseburger features a Certified Angus Beef® patty drizzled with Modelo Especial-infused beer cheese and topped with applewood-smoked bacon, grilled poblanos, garlic aioli, lettuce and a tomato slice served on a brioche bun. The burger will be served with your choice of Hard Rock’s seasoned fries and a side of Modelo Especial-infused beer cheese.
For starters, we tried the Tupelo Chicken Tenders; hand-breaded, lightly fried tenderloins of chicken, served with honey mustard and hickory barbecue sauces. These were very crispy and crunchy. Really yummy when you combined the two sauces.
Modelo Especial is a good beer to have during the week. It’s a full-flavored lager, but with a manageable alcohol content. If you’re like me, two or three of these won’t get you drunk off your ass, but a pleasant enough buzz.
We decided to order try 2 burgers off the menu on our visit. Certainly, we were excited to try the Modelo Especial Bacon Cheeseburger, but the Local Legendary® burger sounded intriguing. So we asked our server Marcus (who was great, btw!) what was on it and determined that we HAD to try it!
The Local Legendary® Burger at Philly’s Hard Rock Cafe is an attempt to be a Philly Italian hoagie on a burger. It features a juicy 1/2-lb. Certified Angus Beef® burger topped with salami, pepperoni, roasted red peppers and provolone cheese. The addition of the red peppers is nice as it as another flavor layer and texture. The salami and pepperoni got a little lost with the burger, but it was definitely tasty. The burger was cooked to our liking.
We tried the Savory Artisan Chili-Seasoned Fries with the Local Legendary® Burger. It came with a chipotle-garlic ketchup. The ketchup was especially fantastic. It had a nice little kick to it.
The Modelo Especial Bacon Cheeseburger is a respectable burger. All of the components worked well together, but I felt that it could have benefited from something with a little more flavor; Poblano peppers are very mild and hence come off a bit pedestrian. Certainly most people would not mind this, but I’m always dazzled by layers of flavor and anything that kicks up the tastebuds. Adding jalapeños to this burger wouldn’t be a bad idea, just sayin’.
That is not to say this is a disappointing burger; quite the contrary. It’s a decently crafted burger. They certainly know how to cook a burger. It was perfectly medium-rare, which is how I like it. Juices oozed out when I squeezed it. It also had nice grill marks on it.
The cheese sauce was very good, but I think the Modelo Especial got lost in it as I didn’t really detect it. And as sauces go on burgers, it was a bit messy. Not really a bad thing per se, and to be expected on burgers with multiple ingredients, but just keep that in mind when eating it. Be sure to have a lot of napkins close.
The Parmesan-Romano fries with garlic aoili had a lot of flavor despite there not being a lot of cheese on them. We really enjoyed these. However, we felt that the cheese sauce on the burger would have been amazing on the fries. It is an option to get cheese sauce for the fries, so we highly recommend doing that.
If you’re on a burger quest and like trying new burger creations, you should drop into the Hard Rock Cafe in Philadelphia to try the Modelo Especial Bacon Cheeseburger.
Drop into the Hard Rock Cafe in Philadelphia, ask for Operations Manager Kevin Wellman, and tell them Philly Grub sent ya! For all of the pictures from our visit, click to the Flickr Album here.
Learn more about the Modelo Especial Bacon Cheeseburger on this video:
The Doyenne of Dining in Philadelphia and South Jersey.