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LaFrieda and Capon Create Burger & Barrel's Lamb Burger

Welcome back to Sound Bites, an Eater original video feature in which footage of the city's most badass chefs crafting their signature dishes is paired with tunes from up-and-coming musicians. Regarding the volume: turn it up.

For this special edition of Sound Bites, we make two stops, first at the LaFrieda Meat Purveyors' facility in New Jersey, then at Burger & Barrel restaurant in Soho to get a look at chef Josh Capon's Lamb and Ramp burger from beginning to end. Spring may be past now, but the above piece offers a nice look at Capon and LaFrieda doing what they do best.

Providing the music today is kickass Brooklyn band Sigmund Droid with a version of their song "I Don't Want You to Go." Watch the video above and read Pat LaFrieda and Josh Capon's descriptions of how the burger came to be below.

Pat LaFrieda:

I wanted to give Josh a broad and robust lamb flavor profile without making the nature of domestic product gamey. This can only be done by using whole muscles from the lamb rather than trimmings or whatever is cheapest. Very similar to the techniques that Pit Masters use down South, by using the entire carcass, one can reach this goal. In no way would I use the rack or loin because they are simply too scarce and expensive. That leaves us with the hind legs and the front shoulders. While still being very expensive, it's impossible to imitate the flavor of these muscles any other way. These two primal cuts contain dozens of whole muscles. Some of these muscles would normally require braising methods of cooking and some grilling methods. Grinding both types together gives the burger its texture. I remove the bones from the legs and the shoulders, cut them in strips, and run them through the grinder twice. It is very important to do this in small batches so that the meat does not become over worked.
Josh Capon:
I wanted to do something that screamed lamb and spring*. My GM Carmelo actually threw in the ramp component which was a winner. The blend is perfect and I hit it with a rosemary garlic oil while it's cooking on the griddle. Rosemary and lamb are classic flavors. It's what the animal naturally eats in the wild. The sauteed ramps are the caramelized onions so to speak and the ramp aioli is the secret sauce if you will. We tried feta and goat cheese but were both too strong and overpowering and decided to go with a homemade mozzarella. Dare I say I think we nailed it. Pretty damn tasty and juicy if I do say so myself. I happen to love lamb and normally eat chops and loins. This is very different but still damn tasty!
*The burger hit the menu at the end of March. Check here for what's on offer this summer.
· Sigmund Droid [Official Site]
Previous Editions of Sound Bites [~ENY~]

Burger & Barrel

25 West Houston St., New York, NY