This Just In ...

Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.

Culinary no-no #196

Culinary no-no's

Last week’s Culinary no-no, #195 focused on:



The Obama’s like to lecture all of America about eating habits, but they don’t practice what they preach.

Some celebrity types have decided to ignore the White House condescension. They include:

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 08:  Celebrity Chef Bobby Flay poses during Hellmann's NYC Turkey Challenge launch with celebrity chef Bobby Flay at C & C Studios on November 8, 2011 in New York, United States.

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 04:  Emeril Lagasse Launches New High-Performance Kitchen Collection At JCPENNEY at Greeley Square Park on April 4, 2012 in New York City.

Hubert Keller (Extended)

Chefs Bobby Flay, Emeril Lagasse, and Hubert Keller, shunning the call of the president and First Lady to eat healthier, are just a few in their profession to open restaurants that feature gourmet burgers.....big, juicy, fatty burgers.

The Wall Street Journal reports, "Some beef experts say the main secret behind tasty celebrity-chef burgers is simple: They pile on the fat, whether from beef patties with 30% fat content or from patties basted in butter. That alone may make their burgers delicious at a time when supermarket ground beef may contain as little as 8% fat."

Burgers with 30% fat swimming in butter! In front of a camera, Michelle Obama would frown. When the camera goes off, she’d run as fast as she could to order.

Burgers are big business. Top-shelf chefs have noticed, ever since Hubert Keller opened Burger Bar in 2004. Restaurants where beef on a bun is king run by TV chefs who’ve become household names have opened across the country.

Adorned with a myriad of toppings, these burgers have gotten cool reviews showing what little many of these writers actually know. The Wall Street Journal reports, “
Instead of the 9% to 12% margins of his fine dining restaurants, Mr. Keller says he pulls down a 35% margin on annual sales of $7.5 million at Burger Bar in Las Vegas.”

Imagine that. The masses ignore a few snooty critics.

Who’d a thunk it. As a recession pounds the restaurant industry, one way to fight back was to put haute burgers on the menu.

Let’s examine one entrée in particular. To do that we visit….

Downtown San Francisco Skyline Photos

Tony Bennett left his heart there.

The city by the Bay.

Specifically, we head to............

We need to take an elevator to the 6th floor...

Check out the TV's at the table....

That's where we find...

Hubert Keller's Burger  Bar.....


The menu.....

There is a Black Angus Beef Burger for $9.75.

A Kobe Beef Burger for $16.50.

A Buffalo Burger for $16.50.

All kinds of extras: baby spinach, chopped jalapeno, peppers, zucchini, onions, bacon, prosciutto, chili, fried egg, mushrooms, any number of sauces.

Fine, fine. Can we take it up a notch or two as another celebrity chef would say?

Sure can.

That would be


( I know you missed those)

The Rossini Burger.


It starts with.........


Kobe beef.

Just look at that marbling.The Wall Street Journal says "thin veins of fat run throughout the muscle, adding juiciness."



Sauteed foie gras.


Don't laugh.

Some would kill for sauteed foie gras.

Goose liver.

On a burger?

Oh, yes.

Even more fattiness. Even more richness.

I say.......YES!



Now shave them.

Are you kidding me?

These aren't just ordinary mushrooms. They are super mushrooms!

Again, thumbs up.


A sauce.

Because it all depends on the sauce.

This one is made with......

Put it all together and you have the Rossini Burger.

I'll take it.


Exquistite Kobe beef.

Foie gras. (I actually like it, but even if I didn't, I'd order it just to drive PETA nuts).

Mushrooms. Not just any mushrooms. Truffles.

The sauce. Not A-1. Nope. Madeira wine. 

I approve.

Umm, Kev.

Excuse me.


Where is the no-no?

Is it the price?

No way.

Kobe beef, foie gras, truffles and a wine sauce? Actually, $60 might be a steal.

You're kidding about the liver, right? We've read you no-no's. You really hate the idea of liver, even fancy liver on a burger, right?


No tomato. No onion. No pickle?

No. That's not it.

It should be obvious, folks.

The coasts have, as they always do, lead the way on great new trends in cuisine. That means our area, which is still learning The Twist, should catch on in about ten years.

This is a wonderful concept. Burgers are about as Americana as it comes. Would you patronize the Milwaukee ChopHouse or Eddie Martini's or Carnevor or Mr. B's or Mo's more often if they also included a section of gourmet burgers on the menu? This approach is working, big time.

Having said that, I would not, repeat, not order the Rossini Burger.

Why not?

Must you ask?




Where the hell's the cheese?

More from the Wall Street Journal, including Bobby Flay taking on the Cheesecake Factory.


The worst holiday drinks.

And finally, from a faithful This Just In reader, these party tips:

1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they're serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. It's rare.. You cannot find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnog-alcoholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It's later than you think. It's Christmas!

3. if something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.

4. as for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole milk. If it's skim, pass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people's food for free. Lots of it. Hello?

6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.

7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don't budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave them behind, you're never going to see them again.

8. Same for pies. Apple, Pumpkin, Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or if you don't like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have some standards.

10. One final tip:   If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention. Re-read these tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner. Remember this motto to live by:

"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.

Page Tools