Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Islands Odyssey: Burger by Burger: The Kilauea


The Kilauea!

For years now I've been grabbing a burger with my daughter at her favorite spot: Island's Restaurant. We love the burgers, and the fries are some of the best we've ever tried. We love watching surfing and snowboarding videos together on the TVs while we eat, and the service is always friendly and fast, which means a lot to me.

Actually, though, I should say that I've loved their "burger", not "burgers". On our first visit to Islands I ordered their most basic, classic burger, the Big Wave with Cheese. Being a fan of California burger culture I have a routine on my first visit to a new spot: I always order the basic burger to gauge the quality. Islands, obviously, passed the test. I loved that the default was pink-centered medium and that the toppings were crisp and flavorful. I also loved that the burger was so big that I had to cut it in two with the knife provided. I loved that first Big Wave so much, in fact, that I never ventured further on the menu.

So, it had been some time since I'd cracked a menu, but recently while waiting for some of our party to arrive I took a glance at the other burgers offered at Islands. While I didn't regret a bite of those many Big Wave burgers, I felt the pull of something more.

Disclosure: The Kilauea burger was the third burger variety I tried at Islands. The Big Wave was followed by the Point Break, which I'll review later. Why? I forgot to grab a pic of the Point Break so the review will come after my next Point Break. ;)

Now, the Kilauea ($10.89) is a jalapeño and black pepper-crusted work of burger art. Topped with pepper jack cheese, chipotle aioli, lettuce, tomato, and those crunchy, delicious, trademarked Island Reds, (crispy fried red onion), it had a satisfying heat that both put a smile on this spice-lover's face and was fitting for a burger named for a volcano. It was a burger with a fun twist; a crispy, crunchy, spicy treat. It's not your surfin' grandpa's burger. If I ever get the burger blues, the Kilauea would be the cure. It's awesome.

What burger's next? Even I don't know, but I'll have fun finding out.

The Goal