The Deconstructed Slinger #1: The Potatoes

Posted: June 24, 2010 in slinger, Slinger Deconstructed
Tags: , , , ,

My inspiration.

This is the first post in a new series as suggested by Andrew Veety.  He told me he couldn’t tell one slinger apart from another and wanted some more information on these plates of awesome that I can’t seem to get enough of. (I did clean up the wording a little bit, and he didn’t say anything about them being awesome, but they totally are.)  I consider myself, at this point to be an expert on the slinger, and I’m now going to try to offer up my experiences on St. Louis’s own hangover/drunken cure as to what makes a really good one.  I’m hoping to explain these awesome dishes, and cement to others, the spot I hold in my mind: St. Louis’s foremost slinger expert.

As we all know, there are several parts to a slinger:  the potatoes, the meat patties, the chili, the eggs, and then the miscellaneous toppings.  For today, I’m going to start with the bedrock of the slinger:  the potatoes.

Here we have the slinger served at The Buttery Restaurant, a St. Louis institution.  They have what are the best potatoes I have come across on a slinger thus far.

The Buttery Restaurant

They are crispy.  There are plenty of them, deceptively so.  I love hash browns.  I can’t say that enough.  I just love them when they’re cooked just so, like they are at the Buttery.  What makes the hash browns the best way of having the potatoes is the fact that they are greasy.  Which, as Brainiac taught us, is the best hangover cure.

Billie's Diner

When cooked just right, they’ll also mix up into a single mound the best.

This is the way I eat my slingers, I mash up all the parts to get all the flavors at once.

Now, their are several ways I’ve found the potatoes so far.  The worst by far, which was just so wrong, was at Billie’s Diner in Soulard.  If you clicked the Soulard link, you’ll see that I’ve had a few slingers there…and had a few drinks there…so it really goes hand in hand!  Lots of bars = lots of places to get a slinger.  Anyway, I digress.  What did Billie’s do so wrong?

Two words: Boiled Potatoes.

This is wrong for three very distinct reasons.  The first of which is that when potatoes are boiled, there’s no grease in them.  When eating a slinger, usually it’s to either sop up alcohol or cure the hangover.  The boiled potatoes do nothing to help this.  The second being that these potatoes do not mix well into the slinger.  The third being, these things are bland as hell.  A good slinger is a cacophony of flavors all at once.  No mixing and no flavor definitely took away from the slinger.

Soulard Coffee Garden

Now, here’s another variation on the potatoes, again I’m not a big fan of these, but breakfast potatoes.  To me really seems like they’re trying to class up the dish.  The example on the right was purchased at the Soulard Coffee Garden, but I have also gotten t hem at the Three Monkeys.

The thing with the breakfast potatoes first and foremost, again, is that they’re not greasy at all.  The Slinger is in no way a healthy dish.  I’m not eating them because I think they’ll help me lose weight or bring my cholesterol down.  This is drunk food.  Do not try to class it up.  There’s just no reason to class this up at all.  Personally, I really don’t even understand breakfast potatoes.  Why would I get those when I can get hash browns?

Three Monkeys

Again, the breakfast potatoes don’t mix well into the rest of the slinger.  If it’s not mixing, then I have to think about each bite to get all the flavors in there, and I’m just not really about that.

On to of that, I don’t really like the flavor much of the potatoes.  So, I still really just prefer the hash browns, but they do taste better than the boiled potatoes…I’m sorry…I just can’t get that bit of nasty out of my head, no matter how many times I’ve tried….just horrible.  Sorry…stuck in my head sometimes.

Now, aside from the slinger burgers, that use french fries, there’s only one other thing I’ve found so far:  Tater Tots.

Tin Can Tavern

The Tin Can Tavern & Grille’s World Cup Slinger compromised with tater tots.

It does have the no mixing problem, but it doesn’t have the no grease problem.

On top of that, tater tots really do taste like fast food hash browns, and that’s a good thing.  I’ve got to admit, I’ve been trying to think of a fast food place where I can go in, and build a slinger…no one seems to have all of the parts at one time though…Jack in the Box is close!  So really, this is the best compromise.  I know that hash browns don’t always come out all that well.  I can’t make the damned things personally, but I keep trying.

So to sum up, hash browns are the best.  The rest are a bit iffy, but tater tots make a great compromise.

As always, keep in touch with the 13 Blog at our various links: email,twitterfacebook, Saint Louis City Edition!

  1. Shanda says:

    You could try a Sonic slinger.

  2. Kiana says:

    I was curious, I randomly came across your blog and have become intrigued by the slinger, and was wondering if you were planning on following up on the “Deconstructed Slinger”? I’d love to read your take on the rest of the ingredients.

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