Drew Lazor (citypaper.net)
Friday, May 28th, 2010
“We’re not looking to enter the burger wars,” says Steve Poses of Frog Burger, the summertime snack stand he’s debuting tomorrow on the front lawn of the Franklin Institute (222 N. 20th St.). Nope, the chef, who first jumped into the restaurant fray in 1973 with Frög at 16th and Spruce and is often credited with spearheading the city’s restaurant renaissance (just check out contemporary Holly Moore’s high praise), has little interest in bumping chests with all those brassy contenders for Philly’s Beefiest Burger. He just wants to cook some tasty, straightforward stuff and do it outside to boot.
Poses and his team, which includes his son Noah and wife Christina, blind-tasted 18 different 80/20 ground beef blends before landing on the one they thought would be ideal for Frog Burger – turns out it came from Esposito’s in South Philly. The patties will be flame-grilled and served on Martin’s potato rolls with lettuce, tomato and red onion on the side; add cheese, bacon or fried onions for $1 to $1.50 extra. The stand will offer two signature burgers, a Marinara jobber with housemade sauce, peppers, onions and optional sharp provolone; and the beast that is the Love Burger, a patty slid between two grilled cheese sandwiches in lieu of buns.
Burgers aren’t the only story at Poses’ tented establishment – he’ll also offer fresh sides (gazpacho, grilled corn, fried green tomatoes, etc.), various fries, hot dogs and crab rolls and Bassett’s Ice Cream shakes. The carrot cake and chocolate fudge “killer cake” made famous at Poses’ Frog Commissary, which he opened in 1977, have not been publicly available for years, save for those who special-ordered them from the chef’s catering operation. They’ll both be served at Frog Burger, in both traditional and milkshake form (!).
Seating at the liquor-licensed Frog Burger will be spread between traditional six-person picnic tables and large 12-foot-long communal tables; they’ll also provide blankets for guests in a picnic-y mood. Poses says they plan on serving daily from noon till dusk. If it rains, it rains.