The Buffalo Burger at Swifty’s is world renown. A couple of years ago I traveled to a remote village in the mountains of Tibet. When the locals found out I was from the U.S. and specifically from Albany NY, they raised their eyebrows and with palpable excitement asked if had I eaten the Buffalo burger at Swifty’s. I had to tell them no, I hadn’t. They were crestfallen. I think from that point on they no longer respected me. At that moment, I vowed I would one day eat this mythical creation.
The Buffalo Burger is a breaded, deep fried beef patty that’s then dipped in Buffalo sauce—wing sauce as I like to call it. To bread and deep fry a 1/2 pound beef patty is gilding the lily to say the least. To then soak it in wing sauce is diabolical. The thing is not for the faint of heart. Only the gastronomically jaded need apply.
One does not just go to Swifty’s and eat the Buffalo Burger. One trains for it, the way an Olympic athlete trains for the games. Yet, weeks or even months of preparation cannot truly gird one for the experience I knew I was about to embark on.
But that didn’t stop me from trying.
Last week I set out my plan. I would go to the gym everyday, and run an extra 15 minutes on the treadmill. (God only knows the astronomical number of calories it contains). I would also douse everything I ate in wing sauce to re-enforce my gut and harden my taste buds. I even poured wing sauce in my morning coffee. (Don’t try it, it’s disgusting).
Having completed my training, I tearfully said goodbye to my wife—knowing I may never see her again— and with feverish anticipation, I headed to Swifty’s. I was about to slay the dragon.
The quaint menu description: “Do not be intimidated by this one-of-a-kind burger! Hand breaded, deep fried crisp and golden finished in buffalo sauce.”
Intimidated? Ha! I was as prepared as any normal human being could be. I. Was. Ready.
When the waitress brought the burger to my table, I swear she floated. I did not see her feet moving. And when she set the glorious thing on the table, the entire area glowed with an ethereal orange glow. A halo if you will. It was a spiritual moment.
Upon inspection, the Buffalo burger is harmless looking. The breading is surprisingly light. I was expecting a crusty fried chicken like crust. The burger has a subtle orange hue from the sauce, and a side of blue cheese dressing is provided to further up the fat quotient and balance out the spiciness. The burger was thick and tender.
The whole thing works really well. It’s not heavy, but is juicy and beefy, with the added wing sauce/blue cheese flavors we all know and love from eating wings. It’s delicious. It’s truly unique, and any self respecting burger fan should eat one at least once.