Today I had a good lunch. Based on calories alone it was probably a good lunch and a dinner. I’ve had Lunchbox Laboratory on my radar for a while because they’ve always had some interesting fry options on the menu, but this was my first trip since starting the blog. The restaurant has locations in Seattle, Bellevue, and Gig Harbor. As a reminder that I should exercise more and eat less, I visited their location in the shadow of REI’s flagship store…Seattle.
I’ve been to Lunchbox Lab half a dozen times or so. Their regular menu is a jaw dropping mix of creative burgers and sides. Their DORK patty (duck and pork) is well known, and their tater tots could inspire an endless number of cheap romance novels. Check out the table-side flavored salts.
The weekly specials looked good. They always do. However, I came with the mission of trying something that I could review for the blog which left me with two options, both from the appetizer menu. Gavacho’s Totchos is a bowl of tater tots with cheese sauce, bacon, green onions, and Satan’s Tears ketchup (spicy ketchup). Their poutine was fries, vegetarian mushroom gravy, and deep fried cheese curds. What? I’ve never seen fried cheese curds in a poutine. I was intrigued.
Just when I thought I had it figured out a different menu option caught my eye. The Moose Knuckle burger is a beef patty topped with their poutine. Say no more. That option came with a side and my server let me upgrade the regular tots to an order of the Gavacho’s Totchos. When I win, we all win.
The Moose Knuckle burger was a monster. As you can see in the picture, I liked it enough to give it an 8.1. I had forgotten that the cheese curds in the poutine were deep fried, so the presentation was a bit of a shock. Gravy was dripping everywhere, the curd nuggets were super intimidating, but I dove in headfirst.
The gravy was awesome. It was the defining characteristic of the burger, so it needed to be. It had a creamy earthiness that blended well with the beef patty. There was only a small handful of fries on the top. More of a novelty than anything else. For what it’s worth, they were about 8mm thick.
The cheese curds were great, but hard to eat. Surprise, surprise…they were cheddar! The novelty of having fried cheese curds was greater than the experience of having fried cheese curds. Maybe if there was more gravy on the bottom of the burger in addition to the top I would have accepted them more easily. Did I mention that the beef patty was awesome? Because it was awesome.
The Gavacho’s Totchos were great. I’d say that the cheese sauce was probably a shared component of their house made macaroni and cheese. Very creamy, very good. Pair that with the Satan’s Tears ketchup and you have a winner. I gave them a 7.9 because I didn’t feel like they quite reached the lofty status of an 8, but 7.9 is no slouch.
My experience proved that the tots will lose their structural integrity after about 10 minutes. They’re a better appetizer than a side, unless you eat your side quickly. I left most of it until after I finished the burger and the tots were falling apart like the July Mariners.
What we should all take from this blog post is that gravy is awesome, tater tots are awesome, and Lunchbox Laboratory is an excellent option for lunch if you intend to hibernate for the next 72 hours. I was happy with my meal.
Visited on 11/7/2016
p.s. the slang definition of moose knuckle isn’t lost on me. I chose to be mature and not draw attention to its horrific connotations
I am very upset that my wife never took me to this amazing establishment while she lived in Bellevue. I’m not entirely sure what a moose knuckle is but looks delicious!
You might not want to google “Moose Knuckle”