Don't Judge a Burger By Its Nuts

Why is it that all firefighters have mustaches, pose topless for charity calendars, and smoke 12 packs of cigarettes a day? Because they're sexy and rugged, that's why. That's also why the firefighters who occupy the station neighboring McCoy's Firehouse keep all their old flame-resistant jackets and hats hung on the historic Pioneer Square bar's walls. With those washboard abs to constantly expose to passersby, they don't need them.But does anybody really need McCoy's peanut-butter-and-bacon burger?The combination of ground beef, mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, and bacon is many people's version of summertime culinary perfection. But toss peanut butter into the mix, and it sounds more like surefire indigestion. I mean, mayo and peanut butter? That should taste like shit, right? Wrong (amazingly).I don't know why this combination works. Then again, I'm not sure I know why Hawaiian pizza works either. Until the latter became a standard offering on the menus of every parlor in the U.S., it probably caused similar queasiness. Maybe it's just our unfamiliarity with the PB-&-bacon burger that causes us to cringe, when in reality peanut butter's just another spread at a chef's disposal—sort of like mayonnaise (King's Hardware in Ballard also serves a PB-&-bacon burger, billed there as the "After School Special").In sticking with our theme of trying menu items at McCoy's that sound like shit but don't taste that way, let's move on to the fish sandwich. Can't go wrong with tartar sauce, but combining deep-fried cod with American cheese is really pushing it. Fish and cheese is a questionable proposition to begin with. Fish with processed cheese should sink the sandwich.But here again, McCoy's defies expectations grounded firmly in common sense, which makes the defiance all the more improbable and impressive. The fish sandwich is fantastic, and given McCoy's location—in Pioneer Square, a crack-rock's throw from some of the city's most notorious open-air drug and public-urination areas—the fact that the restaurant and clientele are relatively clean is similarly remarkable.mseely@seattleweekly.com

 
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