A Burger a Day in May: The Meat Lovers Burger at the Pinch

Order your beef patty topped with pulled duck, cheddar, and bacon at this new 14th Street bar and eatery.

Pulled duck, bacon, and cheddar top the Meat Lovers burger at new Columbia Heights bar the Pinch. Photograph by Jessica Voelker.

The way
Dan Maceda tells it, he and business partners
Carlos Eyster and
Ashley Brudowsky were restaurant-industry vets
who were tired of working for other people and full of ideas for a
neighborhood bar and restaurant.
They found a space–the skinny slice of corner real estate that
formerly belonged to El Salvadoreno–and teamed up with chef

Stephanie Sharkey, last seen at 18th Amendment
on Capitol Hill. Maceda says he and his partners immediately started
firing ideas at Sharkey,
who converted said ideas into the collection of starters,
salads, sides, burgers, and sandwiches staffers have been serving
since the no-frills bar’s May 4 opening.

Among the ideas that made it onto the menu: fried pickles in
a pretzel crust, pulled duck sliders, and–get this–a Benedict
burger with fried tomato and hollandaise. Another standout: the
Meat Lovers burger, which features a beef patty with Sharkey’s
secret mix of seasonings, topped with a saucy pile of pulled
duck, crunchy bacon, and a healthy heap of shredded cheddar.
The mix of proteins may be off-putting to all but the
carnivorously adventurous, but how hard is it to find a meat lover in
this town? Not hard at all, apparently; Eyster says the
sandwich is already popular among neighborhood patrons.

Head to the Pinch o try a Meat Lovers burger
with a discounted Allagash White or New River pale ale–a weekday 5
to 7 happy hour debuts tonight and features specials on craft
beer and mixed drinks. In coming weeks, the Pinch will introduce brunch, live concerts and pub quizzes in the basement bar, and a
cocktail menu that will include Dan Maceda’s specialty, a
rum punch, along with classically concocted martinis and
Manhattans–drinks he learned to make during his time behind other
people’s bars.

The Pinch. 3548 14th St., NW; 202-722-4440. Open Monday through Thursday and Sunday from 5 PM to 2 AM, 5 PM to 3 AM Fridays
and Saturdays. Brunch service will begin in the next few weeks.