The Soft, Funky Cheese Tyler Florence Tops Burgers With - Exclusive

Forget Monterey Jack, cheddar, or individually wrapped cheese, like American slices  — unless you want to delight in a street-style smash burger, in which case, Tyler Florence is all for it. The chef's preferred hamburger cheese, however, is slightly sweet, smells like fungi, and comes from France. "At Miller & Lux and Wayfare Tavern — our restaurants in San Francisco — we use triple cream brie," he recently revealed to Tasting Table in an exclusive interview. "That's actually my favorite cheese on top of a burger because it has this soft mushroom note to it and it has high fat content. When you get into it, there's a level of unctuousness [that] is special." 

At his restaurants, per Florence, the fattiness of the brie is complemented by brioche buns and dry-aged beef. By all means, copycat him because, as he told SFist back in 2021, this is a dish that's capable of making people cry with joy. 

What's so special about triple cream brie?

Tyler Florence told us he combines the melty triple cream brie with a bacon jam. And a combo as rich as this is fitting, considering this thrice-creamed cheese was invented as a luxury for Normandy's rich in the middle of the 19th century. French cheesemonger François Robin once explained to Culture Cheese Magazine, "To understand triple creams, one must go back to the past, when being a 'fat' person was a visible sign of wealth." As the name suggests, triple cream cheese is deliciously fatty (or creamy) because cheesemakers add extra cream to the mix before cheese curds are formed). That, in turn, means the butterfat in a triple cream brie is considerably higher than in, say, your run-of-the-mill version. It must ring in at least 75%, per French standards. A double cream, by comparison, must contain at least 65% butterfat, according to French regulation. 

In keeping with Florence's fat philia, the chef told us he prefers a 75-25 lean-to-fat ratio for his burgers, as opposed to the leaner 80-20 ratio we recommend in our burger meat guide