Following a less-than-stellar experience with Smashburger's chicken sandwiches, advice poured in as to where better versions could be found.
In fact, prior to the chicken sandwich tipoff, I had planned a trip to the restaurant to try their special September burgers designed by local food writers and bloggers as part of JerryBuilt's ambassador program.
Two chickens could be killed with one stone during this visit, however, as almost all the ambassador burgers can be made with a chicken breast rather than a beef patty.
Like Smashburger, JerryBuilt offers specific topping combinations as well as the option for the consumer to create-her-own sandwich. In the spirit of greater diversity in taste-tasting, I tried three different combinations, including a chicken version of the Swank-A-Liscious Burger designed by Urban Swank lifestyle gurus Felice Sloan and Shanna Jones.
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All three sandwiches were satisfying and some, as you might expect, better than others. Third place goes to JerryBuilt's Truffle Mushroom and Swiss chicken sandwich. The juicy, lightly seared chicken breast was flawless, and in a way that's all that matter considering this ingredient is the fundemental base of the sandwich. What was "missing" was mushrooms, swiss cheese, and truffle oil, which were present though in somewhat paltry quantities. A thicker cheese slice, a whole cup of sauteed mushrooms, and a more liberal jolt of oil would easily take this sandwich to the next level.
The (obviously somewhat biased) selection for second place was my create-your-own chicken sandwich that I layered with lettuce, tomato, avocado, American cheese, and a fried egg. Those ingredients in combination ostensibly always already elevate the quality of any sandwich or burger; however, faulty components (underripe avocado, a fully cooked yolk) can easily ruin the sandwich. JerryBuilt skimps a bit on the tomato, but makes up for it with the generous soft buttery slices of avocado, an ample cheese slice, and a correctly fried egg whose oily lace perimeter encloses a liquid yolk just waiting to spill out onto the bun.
And, finally, the first place JerryBuilt chicken sandwich was...the burger! No, not really, but sort of as Swank-A-Licious sandwich sans beef, avec chicken was absolutely slamming. It's debatable how swanky you will look consuming this mother of a sandwich stacked with fried onions, cheddar cheese, siracha mayo, bacon, tomato, and a fried egg as the ova alone necessitates the use of several napkins and maybe a bib. The fiery chili of the siracha is wonderfully balanced by the cream of the mayonnaise as the hearty dairy notes of the cheddar; bacon and fried onions then step in to up the savory, add some crunch, and push the Kaiser bun to the breaking point such that dripping and spillage become inevitable.
This particular sandwich will may lead bibs to become the new Birkins. And the others are definitely worth a try, too.