Huge Towering Burger at Kyoto Cafe “Hagi”
NOTE: Images with an icon next to them have been artificially shrunk to better fit your screen; click the icon to restore them, in place, to their regular size.
Big Burger with a little LEGO minifig for scale -- Hagi Burger and Coffee Restaurant -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2012 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/400 sec, f/2.5, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Big Burger
with a little LEGO minifig for scale

Last fall I discovered the largest hamburger I'd ever seen in real life, at the restaurant “Hagi” (萩) a couple of kilometers west of Kyoto Station. I went back today with Paul Barr (with whom I'd discovered it, as seen in this photo in front of the restaurant) and another friend to give the burger another try.

Three hamburger patties, egg, bacon, and Lord knows what else... it was big, but not nearly as big as I remembered it from before. I was a bit disappointed. Still, it towered over the plate... a plate so deep that the little minifig barely reached the lip.

This is It tasty, of course, but a bit anti-climactic -- Hagi Burger and Coffee Restaurant -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2012 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/2.5, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
This is It
tasty, of course, but a bit anti-climactic
Head and Shoulders above other burgers -- Hagi Burger and Coffee Restaurant -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2012 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/500 sec, f/2.5, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Head and Shoulders
above other burgers
Oh Stop now you're just teasing! -- Hagi Burger and Coffee Restaurant -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2012 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Voigtländer 125mm f/2.5 — 1/160 sec, f/2.5, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Oh Stop
now you're just teasing!

This was their big “Mountain Burger”, I think it's called. Paul had the much smaller Avocado Burger, which I'll have to try next time. The coffee is very good, which also recommends the place.

Sadly, the owner has chosen to allow smoking, so one person can ruin it for everyone else, as happened today, so I'll be a lot less inclined to choose to visit. I wonder whether I can get a burger to go?


All 6 comments so far, oldest first...

The first shot looks incredibly clean for ISO 6400, but it still retains a lot of details. Which setting (noise reduction and sharpening) are you using in LR4? Thanks!

I use my bulk-develop plugin to set the noise-reduction settings, and in this case luminance noise reduction went to an aggressive 50, as did sharpen masking (which eliminates sharpening in low-contrast areas). —Jeffrey

— comment by Gianluca on April 24th, 2012 at 10:19pm JST (5 years, 8 months ago) comment permalink

At last a wise decision.
There is no need for a ban. All that is required is for people to be free to make their own choices.
The restaurant owner has made theirs… they have no problem with letting customers smoke.
You have made yours… you are much less likely to spend money with this restaurant because you choose not to. The reason why you don’t like smokers is neither here nor there.

If the restaurant’s profits dip because customers who dislike smokers stay away then that is a problem for the restaurant owner to solve not the state. If they go up then he has proven that there are enough people who are okay with eating in a smoking friendly establishment.

I am sick to death of nanny states (UK in my case) telling me and everyone else how to think and worse removing freedom of choice from the very people who fund their existence.

— comment by Derek on April 24th, 2012 at 10:46pm JST (5 years, 8 months ago) comment permalink

It looks like a heart attack waiting to happen. Smoking enhances the effect. That’s not a problem; we all know the risks and are free to make our own choices.

— comment by John Youngs on April 25th, 2012 at 4:50am JST (5 years, 8 months ago) comment permalink

That bacon looks a little undercooked, or “soft” to those who prefer it that way. We noticed that everywhere we went in Japan, the bacon was soft just like that. What do the Japanese have against crisp bacon? Oh, well. I can have my bacon anyway I want it here in the U.S., but I can’t have all of the other truly amazing foods I had in Japan.

I suppose I can see both sides of the smoking issue. From a restaurant point of view, before they banned smoking in most restaurants in the state of Georgia, there were owners who wanted to ban smoking, but who didn’t want to anger smokers and then answer to them by standing up for their own decision to disallow smoking. It was seen as a “compromise” to have a smoking and a non-smoking section, but unless you spend a lot of money for separate ventilation and dividing walls, you eventually anger non-smokers who get to experience smoke wafting into their supposedly smoke-free section. After the ban, many owners breathed a figurative sigh of relief, and it also benefited many employees who no longer had to work in smoke-filled environments – one of those employees being myself. Before the ban, a server could only beg out of working the smoking section if she happened to be pregnant, or perhaps asthmatic. The smoking ban also saved my tongue from being repeatedly bitten when I had to wait on parents who chose to subject their children to sitting in a section full of smokers because they couldn’t be bothered to wait for a non-smoking table.

Hope you enjoyed the burger!

Having been the happy recipient of many ultra-crispy strips of bacon in my life (especially after my mom got a microwave oven in the late 70s), I must admint that until you mentioned it, the softness of the bacon didn’t register… only the taste (which was yummy). In retrospect, I guess the softness just seemed to match the intended use in this case. —Jeffrey

— comment by Julia on April 25th, 2012 at 5:33am JST (5 years, 8 months ago) comment permalink

The burger looks great. I wish more restaurants here serve fried egg on their burgers, its so good. I think it’s an Asian thing…..
As for smoking, the biggest issue is that it fills the air, causing second hand smoke. That leaves non smokers little choices but to breathe it in, or, leave……….

— comment by David wong on April 25th, 2012 at 12:28pm JST (5 years, 8 months ago) comment permalink

Wow, what a burger! I could never eat my way through one of those. I think one of the fast food chains in Japan has a huge multi-layered burger at the moment. It’s enough to feed a family. Lol.

— comment by Jen on January 13th, 2014 at 10:44am JST (3 years, 11 months ago) comment permalink
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