National Hamburger Day is coming soon, and we know exactly how you can celebrate. Duncan’s Burgers grand opening weekend will start with 500 free hamburgers and $1 off the menu on Thursday, May 28 on the corner of Bedford Ave and N 12th St at McCarren Park in Brooklyn. The food cart will serve 250 free hamburgers while supplies last, and an additional 250 free hamburger coupons will be distributed by Caviar, a food delivery service.
What’s unique about Duncan’s Burgers is the quality of the beef. The burgers are made from Dickson‘s two week dry aged, grass-fed beef raised locally in upstate New York. Prices start at $3.50 for a single hamburger, and on National Hamburger Day, it will be $2.50.
When I sunk my teeth into a double cheeseburger with the works, I was very surprised. From the first bite, I noticed a significant difference in flavor from the dry aged beef. Was it the grass fed or pasture raised factor? The dry aged factor?
When I asked Galen Duncan, the owner of Duncan’s Burgers, what made it taste so different, he told me it was the dry aged beef. So I had found a burger under $10 with a high-quality, deluxe taste. On top of that, I was supporting a sustainable, factory-farm-free world. What’s not to love?
Galen Duncan moved from Seattle, Washington about three years ago, when he took up hospitality and management classes in Brooklyn.
The idea for Duncan’s Burgers stemmed from a late night McDonald’s burger craving, but the cheap burger is such poor quality that he knew it wasn’t the best choice. Additionally, any quality, dry aged beef is pricey. This list from Eater of dry aged burgers in New York City shows few under $15 and none as cheap as $3.50.
The reason for that? All of the burger restaurants with quality beef make the entire burger fancy. Simplified burgers with quality meat were few and far between.
“I felt like it was a part of the market that was missing,” said Duncan, a former Marine who has worked in all aspects of the restaurant industry, from bartender to line cook. “There was a big gap in the market,” he added.
He sold his first burger on September 19th of last year, coincidentally the day after National Cheeseburger Day. Since then, he has done several pop-ups and regularly serves late nights at The Rookery and on the weekends at Schwick Market.
One of the ideas behind these sustainable, organic burgers is to create “awesome drunk food,” he said. He explained that most people think that any food will do for drunk food. His response to that mindset is “how ‘bout the best thing? That’ll do too!”
Additionally, he wants to “make people realize they can afford” the quality meat that he uses.
Besides the classic single hamburger, Duncan’s Burgers also serves a spicy burger ($8.50), which has habanero and onion mixed into the patty itself, and a bacon burger ($8.50) with bacon both in the patty and on top. Every burger comes the special sauce, a mix of several condiments and homemade potato chips.
In the future, Duncan plans to deliver burgers to local bars in the area and eventually buy more food carts late this summer or next year. Additionally, he hopes to convert the diesel truck that pulls the food cart to run on vegetable oil. He also has hopes to ensure all of the other ingredients are organic and local, including the bacon, which is currently local but not pasture raised, yet.
If you’re in the city this summer, don’t miss out on free burgers on Duncan’s Burgers opening day and enjoy the sustainable, grass fed deliciousness all summer long in Williamsburg.