Just about four years ago, an American-cheese-filled burger from Massapequa's New York Burger Bar vanquished all comers — including neighbor All American Burger — during an online Burger Smackdown that garnered 50,000 votes.
That burger, the Juicy Lucy (an eight-ounce patty stuffed with American cheese and adorned with caramelized onion, tomato, pickles and a mayonnaise-based special sauce) has now taken up residence in Commack at Prime Burger Bar, the third burger restaurant from owner Richard Bedrosian. (His second location, Babylon Burger Bar, opened in February 2018). Bedrosian renovated what had most recently been Bleachers Bar & Grill into a polished gastropub, with a 15-seat bar, ample brick and reclaimed wood, five flat-screen televisions and a tin ceiling. His partner in the Commack location is Edwin Camson.
The 100-seat Commack spot is the largest of the three sit-down spots, but shares essentially the same menu, with a core of build-your-own grilled burgers that start at $12. Customers choose a patty (either a regular or aged chuck-short rib-ribeye blend, a bacon-infused beef patty, American kobe, turkey, tuna or Beyond Burger) and bun (challah, multigrain, pretzel, gluten-free or lettuce), then pick from toppings that range from a fried egg and bacon jam to cheeses, pickles, onions, peppers and their brethren. Specialty "chef's burgers," ($14 to $17) come in ornate combos such as the Great South Bay, a patty topped with braised short ribs, melted Swiss, caramelized onions and cabernet sauce. The feted Juicy Lucy, a burger which originates in Minnesota's Twin Cities, costs $17.
Appetizers, fries, oversized salads and decked-out milkshakes augment the regular menu, and there are 20 taps behind the full bar; on a recent night, Troeg's Mad Elf Ale, a fleeting seasonal brew, was pouring.
Bedrosian was a longtime nightclub promoter until he pivoted to burgers, said this is likely not the last burger bar he'll open. He partners with different investors on each. "We'd looking to open a few more," he said, and possibly farther out east.
Prime Burger Bar is open daily from 11:30 a.m. at 6092 Jericho Tpke., Commack, 631-486-9414. primeburgerbarcommack.com.