Greg Eng and Jason Low, the chef-owners of Oakland's new Trueburger, know that sublimity is in the details.
Exhibit A: the pair's soft, substantial burger buns.
Their devotion to attentive cooking manifests itself across Trueburger's fastidious menu of all-American favorites: The black bean chili ($4.50) is laced with fresh-ground chili powder; the Angus beef for the hamburgers ($5-$8) is ground daily, resulting in a yielding patty; the burger's "garlic sauce" is house-made aioli on the humble down-low.
Then there are those buns. Eng and Low put a variety of breads through their paces on the pair's hunt for the ideal framing device for Trueburger's burgers. They tried brioche, white bread and potato bread before settling on the paragon of the genre: a half-baked challah bun, custom-made for Trueburger by Berkeley's Bread Workshop.
Do not misunderstand: There is nothing fussy about this bun, in the same way that there is nothing rococo about the rest of Trueburger. The gently eggy bun has the heft a burger necessitates, yet the crumb is dainty and light.
This is a burger that tastes precisely like the unpretentious hamburger of your dreams--only better.
Trueburger, 146 Grand Ave. (at Valdez St.), Oakland; 510-208-5678 or trueburgeroakland.com