THE GHOST OF MATTY PLUMMER
- Ghost pepperjack cheese
- Pickled jalapenos
- Red onion
- x2 1/3lb. beef patties
I am a forgiving person, and part of my faith is the belief in second chances. So, when hunger came-a-knocking, I decided to give Fat Patties‘ a second chance, months after struggling to find a decent burger in Southern Illinois’ coal country. Not that there aren’t any good burgers down here, mind you; I just needed something worth writing about.
The so called Ghost of Matty Plummer, my slightly altered version of the joint’s Matty Plummer burger is named after the English footballer of almost-the-same-name. Why? I have no idea. Maybe he had a spicy character or had a penchant for fiery foods? Who knows? I eat pigskins, I don’t throw them*.
The original Matty Plummer is a single burger with two slices of pepperjack cheese (one on top, and one on bottom) and pickled jalapenos. I decided to add some extra jalapenos, and chose to go with Ghost pepperjack cheese, for the extra kick. Lemme tell you something, folks – the heat was astonishingly beautiful: a hellish procession of fiery imps spanking and poking the taste buds with little pitchforks, laughing at the sizzling and pretending that the floor is, in fact, lava.
Nowadays, ghost pepperjack cheese is pretty easy to find, even White Castle experiments with it, but I often find it lacking in heat or flavor, and ghost peppers are supposed to be packing in both departments. Fat Patty’s ghost pepper cheese was the first time I truly felt like the product delivered – savory, smokey hints of mango and caramelized pineapple played along with the carrot-like sweetness, and the heat, of course. Combined with the perfectly charred and spiced patties, and the acidity of the generous serving of pickled jalapeno slices, the final mouthfeel and flavor was almost like eating a taco with lots of very piquant salsa verde. The taste of the grill and the jalapenos mimic the flavor of a grilled tomatillo, in a way, resulting in a perfectly flavored burger with a profile I’d expect from a TexMex hole in the wall! The patties were a big improvement from the time I had the restaurant’s Bucky Dome burger in every way imaginable – juicy, tender and full of sinful decadence.
And, in a rare turn of events, I can’t even think of a way to make this burger better! Not even bacon is necessary here, the Matty Plummer has it all.
Okay, fine, maybe I third patty wouldn’t hurt. 😛
Go ahead and give this burger a try if you find yourselves in Carbondale and ask for the Ghost of Matty Plummer. They might raise an eyebrow at first, but just tell them what it is, and where you got your inspiration from.
It is a real shame that Fat Patties does not carry local Scratch Brewing Company‘s beers. All the sodas and most of the beers sold are from local businesses. The joint also boasts Lick Creek meats as well, so where’s the love for Scratch? Even a single rotating keg on tap would be an incredible addition to Fat Patties, and the Scratch Tomatillo Saison Farmhouse Ale[low% ABV] would be the perfect pairing for this. A light, refreshing saison to add another (this time actual) layer of tomatillo to the mix for lucid presence of green tomato in the flavor profile of the burger. I wouldn’t want anything more complex that a simple saison for this pairing, nothing that would distract from the heat or flavor of the Ghost pepperjack cheese, so the Tomatillo Saison would be my go-to ale to drink with the Ghost of Matty Plummer. It’s hard to imagine anything else being so perfect. That’s what being the perfect pairing is all about, I guess.