How to eat a burger menu

Stop doing it wrong

Reading time: 4 min

Posts about how to properly eat a taco have been making the rounds lately. While I won’t dispute how necessary these instructions are for some —once you ignore the authoritative tone and simply consider them as good suggestions/guidelines— I must say I see an important lack on instructions on how to eat a burger menu.

The burger, short for hamburger, is a curious food item. The name means “A sandwich containing hamburg steak”.

As the etymological origin suggests, a burger is a type of sandwich, however (and this is the confusing part) a halloumi burger, for example, isn’t really a burger despite still counting as a sandwich. Ironically enough, the cover photo of this post isn’t a hamburger either. It’s a fried chicken sandwich. We’ll let that slide on the basis of eeh, close enough.

Eating a burger, or rather, a typical burger menu seems simple, but you see people breaking the most elementary rules left and right.

This is why I have taken it upon myself to write this handy step by step guide.

How to eat a classic burger menu

What is a burger menu?

First, let’s define what we mean by burger menu.

It’s really quite simple. A burger menu contains the following:

  1. A burger or burger-like sandwich
  2. A beverage, usually carbonated
  3. An accesory. The accesory must be french fries

Now, I am aware that there exist degenerate versions of menus in which item #3 is replaced by something other than french fries or a relative thereof, like bean salad, or normal salad. This will not do and the entire guide will come crashing down if no french fries or reasonable equivalent (e.g sweet potato fries) is used.

So, without further adieu, let’s go over the proper rules for eating a burger menu:

Step 1: Don’t eat all the fries first

It’s ok to take a couple fries and eat them before your first bite of the burger, but don’t you dare empty the whole portion of fries before you get to the burger. The burger is the centerpiece of the meal, and it’s foolish and disrespectful to pad your stomach with fries before you even start. This is specially true if you have “heavy” fries of some kind, e.g. chili cheese fries or animal style fries.

The important part, however, is that once you have started eating the burger, you must focus your undivided attention on eating the burger. No matter if you have company or were in the middle of a mealtime conversation, your utter concentration must be placed on eating that burger until you reach the next step. And you’ll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine.

Step 2: Don’t take a sip of your drink before you’ve eaten half the burger

This is crucial. The carbonation of the drink not only affects stomach-settlement but it also dilutes the flavor profile of the burger you are about to bite. It changes the moisture of your mouth cavity, preventing you from experiencing the true texture of the burger.

Step 3: When you have reached the halfway point of your burger, you must drink

Conversely, and somewhat counterintutively for burger noobs, at the halfway point of your burger eating, you have to take a sip of your drink. Those of us in the business refer to this technique as “washing it down”. This prepares your body to digest the second half for the hamburger.

You can estimate the halfway point of a burger pretty easily, as any respectable burger will be served in a round bun, assuming you take your bites in a non-anarchic fashion, following the principle of locality (i.e. your next bite of the burger is likely to be around the same burger-area as your previous bite), you should en up with a shape resembling a half-moon when examining the burger from a top-down view. It is at this moment when you should put your burger down and drink. The drink must be administered via straw for fine control of hidration-fluid.

Step 4: Finish the rest of the burger

Now you are left with half a burger, some drink and, if you are not a barbarian monster and followed the first step like we told you, some fries as well.

The only thing remaining to do is to finish your burger. This is the step that affords the eater the most room for creativity and self-expression, as alternating between taking a bite of the burger, and eating fries is allowed by the gods of justice. Even taking a sip of your drink when you feel like it is, as they say, “yes ok”.

This step ends when you have finished your burger

Step 5: Clean it up

If you have fries remaining, you can continue nibbling on them until you’ve eaten all or almost all of the,. Same goes for the drink, although in this case you don’t need to finish it all because, let’s be honest, soda isn’t very good for you and the cups they give you tendo to be too big anyways. The soda has served its purpose and it may now be discarded.

After this, you may choose to be a “helpful customer” and bring your tray of refuse to the trash. This is optional, but it’s a nice thing to do, and doesn’t take a lot of effort. When in doubt, be sure to follow the sociocultural customs of the country you are eating the burger in.

And that’s all folks! I hope this guide has served you as a nice life hack to eating burger menus, and help you avoid doing it wrong ever again. Cheers!