After boarding a flight to Maine last week with the wife to celebrate our 7-year anniversary, I broke it to her that, "We have to stop for a burger near Portland, one that is in the book." How could she say no? It was on the way and it also happened to be my 4oth birthday.
I'm glad to report that nothing has changed at Harmon's since I visited the tiny burger shack almost two years ago for the book. This visit was not just about checking up on a first-rate burger though. On my previous visit I pulled a burger joint faux pas and needed to make amends.
When I sat down to inhale my first Harmon cheeseburger way back in December 2006 I pushed off the red gelatinous goo that was piled on the bun. Owner Pete Wormell caught me doing this and shouted, "Hey! Whataya doin'!" I sheepishly explained that I, "wanted to try it without all of the stuff on top..." Huge mistake. I had broken my own personal rule to eat the burger the locals eat, no matter how weird. That red stuff was weird but I found out this past week it's also pretty damned good. It's a sweet red relish that goes well with the burger, the cheese, the stewed onions, the mustard, and the steamed bun. It's what everyone seems to order there, including me from now on.
Someone please tell Pete I ate the weird red goo, and liked it.