In a world where the next best thing comes at you fast and furious, world traveler, chef, and aficionado of life, Mat Ramsey, is taking a delectably slow approach to what most think of as fast food.
His brand new blog Porn Burger is exactly that: mouth-watering creations that combine tantalizing ingredients resulting in scandalous burgers that would make even the most daring eaters blush.
We spoke with Mat about his blog, his burgers, and how his travels have influenced why he’s stripping buns of common accoutrements and dressing them up in risqué style.
The Trip Tribe: Where was the best burger you’ve ever had?
- Let me first cop out and say that burgers are a lot like wine… There’s one for every occasion. That said, I was once treated to Hubert Keller’s “Rossini Burger” ($60 a pop!) at his Burger Bar in SF and grinned like an idiot for weeks to follow: Kobe-style Wagyu Beef, cooked to medium-rare perfection, dressed with seared foie gras, a healthy portion of shaved black truffles, and a rich brown Black Perigold truffle sauce. I’m not religious, but this burger made me believe in a higher power.
TTT: A lot of your burgers seem to feature spices and dressings from exotic places… are these mostly ingredients you aspire to use or are they flavors you’ve had before that you’d like to see in burger form?
- Honestly, it’s a little of both. PornBuger.me is essentially a sandbox I’ve built for myself to play/create in. Some of the ingredients I grew up with, e.g. biscuits and gravy (the Slumberjack). Some are ingredients I grew into as an adult, e.g. lamb heart tartare (My Bloody Valentine), and some are ingredients that I just simply want to tinker with, e.g. sea urchin (the Merman).
TTT: Tell us a bit about how your life of travel has inspired the concepts for your burgers.
- Travel is a funny thing. It opens one to new experiences. When I was a kid, I was fortunate enough to live in Tokyo, which totally challenged my preconceived notions of what food could be. McDonald’s cheeseburgers suddenly came with pineapple, fish sticks were replaced by raw fish on rice, and hotdogs were… well they were still hotdogs, but they tasted different. The chef in me still loves to test those preconceived notions. I mean, who says a burger can’t be malted and served as garnish for an adult Underberg milkshake?
TTT: If you had unlimited resources to make the ultimate burger, what would it consist of?
- Can you put a price on love? Just kidding, that’s stupid. The ultimate burger would consist of a spectacular sunset, Bill Murray, the Big Sur, and an ice cold Lagunitas IPA… Actual ingredients being secondary.
TTT: How do you see food as a part of travel? Or do you?
- At the very heart of every culture, is food. Nothing says more about a place and it’s people, than what they eat, when they eat it, and how it’s prepared. When I travel, I feel the best way to experience a destination is through its cuisine. After all, a good adventure is always rife with edible curios.
TTT: Weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten. Go.
- One of the most memorable dishes I’ve ever had was during a stretch in the Nepali Himalayas. On my final night in the highlands, my gracious host treated me to a “slurpy” amphibious stew, I can only assume was made with salamander or newt. Let’s just say there were a lot of tiny, webbed feet and tails.
TTT: Why the burger? (as opposed to a hot dog or empanada or something else)
- How dare you.
TTT: What’s next on the menu?MR:
- Let’s just say, you can expect there to be some fowl play in the coming weeks
TTT: Where do you plan on traveling next?
- Spa World in Virginia. They have this shaved ice with red beans, fresh fruit, mochi, and cornflakes, that makes stripping naked in front of your friends totally worth it.
TTT: Any plans for fries?
- Some of my best friends are fries. Also, I’ve been experimenting with crispy fried gnocchi tater tots and duck fat fries.
TTT: Describe yourself in 6 words.
- Playful, Adventurous, Slursty, Vibrant, Indulgent, Growing
Mathew’s background in creative spans 10+ years and extends into various industries, including culinary, broadcast, design, journalism, photography, and social media. These days,
when he’s not delving into the dark arts of hamburgery, he works as a creative gun for hire, as co-founder of his DC/NYC based video production company, Grizzly+Scout.