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Sidebars: Local burger joint leaves litigator underwhelmed

Jennifer Lukemeyer , Fred Vaiana
August 14, 2013
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SidebarsSidebars reviews and rates eateries lawyers may enjoy visiting when working at courthouses throughout Indiana. Fred offers this week’s review of Punch Burger.

What I have to write about is really nothing new amongst you local foodies, but it is something a bit off the usual choices in Indy. As Jenny was on her mid-summer soirée to Mexico, I was joined on this occasion by my esteemed law clerk, Hunter Bedford. Hunter will soon be a junior at Marquette University and is a part of the Pre-Law Scholar program there. Hopefully, what he has seen this summer with me will not scare him away from the profession.

On a blistering hot July mid-day, I engaged Hunter in a normal law clerk duty. I sent him to get lunch while I enjoyed the cool comfort of my office. I’ve been trying to expose Hunter to a variety of lunch options and, on this date, Punch Burger had a certain appeal. I had been there myself on a previous occasion and enjoyed a blue burger along with the eclectic atmosphere. A nice finishing touch to the place was the patrons drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon tall-boys at 11:30 a.m. While I enjoyed the burger and the atmosphere on that day, I didn’t exactly walk away with the feeling that this was a destination spot. In all fairness, I vowed to give it another try given the popularity of the place. After my lunch with Hunter, my feelings remain unchanged.

I opted for the burnt cheeseburger. The online menu describes it as a burger with a ring of burnt cheese around it. In reality, it is a burger with two slices of “burnt” cheese on top. I really wouldn’t describe this American cheese as being burnt, but it was certainly to the point of browned crispiness. The quarter-pound beef patty consisted of quality, fresh-ground meat but was overcooked as well, resulting in a relatively dry burger. If it weren’t for the higher quality of meat that they serve, this could have been a burger disaster.

I added the optional bacon selection – a wise choice. The only reason why I did is because the menu stated it came from Goose the Market. The thick slices were everything I expected. We are so fortunate in Indy to indulge in all “The Goose” has to offer. I’ll save that review for another day to benefit you out-of-towners.

Hunter selected the build-your-own burger option. After two years of exposure to the German heritage of Milwaukee, he decided to base his burger on the foundation of a pretzel bun. Admittedly, his expectations were high for the bun, and he came away a bit underwhelmed. As for the beef patty, he echoes my sentiments. When given the option for the patties to have “a little pink in the middle” or “cooked all the way through,” we asked for the former but received a high-quality, though very dry, burger. Hunter added the pepperjack cheese and fried egg, hoping to add an extra kick; he was still not very impressed. Overall, the great quality of the ingredients made for a good burger, though not one that blew him away. In his words: “With so many other fantastic food choices in town, it’ll certainly take more than a so-so burger to keep me away from the legal field.”

The bottom line: While these burgers offer a break from the ordinary, there are a litany of better burger choices in downtown Indy. Space limitations prevent me from listing them all. Of course, if you’re anxious for a PBR tall-boy can of beer before afternoon court, this may be your spot. Punch Burger, 137 East Ohio Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204. 317.426.5280. www.punchburger.com.•

__________

Fred Vaiana and Jennifer Lukemeyer practice at Voyles Zahn & Paul in Indianapolis, focusing on criminal defense. Both enjoy a good meal with colleagues and friends. The opinions expressed in this column are those of the authors.

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  1. On a related note, I offered the ICLU my cases against the BLE repeatedly, and sought their amici aid repeatedly as well. Crickets. Usually not even a response. I am guessing they do not do allegations of anti-Christian bias? No matter how glaring? I have posted on other links the amicus brief that did get filed (search this ezine, e.g., Kansas attorney), read the Thomas More Society brief to note what the ACLU ran from like vampires from garlic. An Examiner pledged to advance diversity and inclusion came right out on the record and demanded that I choose Man's law or God's law. I wonder, had I been asked to swear off Allah ... what result then, ICLU? Had I been found of bad character and fitness for advocating sexual deviance, what result then ICLU? Had I been lifetime banned for posting left of center statements denigrating the US Constitution, what result ICLU? Hey, we all know don't we? Rather Biased.

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  3. This law is troubling in two respects: First, why wasn't the law reviewed "with the intention of getting all the facts surrounding the legislation and its actual impact on the marketplace" BEFORE it was passed and signed? Seems a bit backwards to me (even acknowledging that this is the Indiana state legislature we're talking about. Second, what is it with the laws in this state that seem to create artificial monopolies in various industries? Besides this one, the other law that comes to mind is the legislation that governed the granting of licenses to firms that wanted to set up craft distilleries. The licensing was limited to only those entities that were already in the craft beer brewing business. Republicans in this state talk a big game when it comes to being "business friendly". They're friendly alright . . . to certain businesses.

  4. Gretchen, Asia, Roberto, Tonia, Shannon, Cheri, Nicholas, Sondra, Carey, Laura ... my heart breaks for you, reaching out in a forum in which you are ignored by a professional suffering through both compassion fatigue and the love of filthy lucre. Most if not all of you seek a warm blooded Hoosier attorney unafraid to take on the government and plead that government officials have acted unconstitutionally to try to save a family and/or rescue children in need and/or press individual rights against the Leviathan state. I know an attorney from Kansas who has taken such cases across the country, arguing before half of the federal courts of appeal and presenting cases to the US S.Ct. numerous times seeking cert. Unfortunately, due to his zeal for the constitutional rights of peasants and willingness to confront powerful government bureaucrats seemingly violating the same ... he was denied character and fitness certification to join the Indiana bar, even after he was cleared to sit for, and passed, both the bar exam and ethics exam. And was even admitted to the Indiana federal bar! NOW KNOW THIS .... you will face headwinds and difficulties in locating a zealously motivated Hoosier attorney to face off against powerful government agents who violate the constitution, for those who do so tend to end up as marginalized as Paul Odgen, who was driven from the profession. So beware, many are mere expensive lapdogs, the kind of breed who will gladly take a large retainer, but then fail to press against the status quo and powers that be when told to heel to. It is a common belief among some in Indiana that those attorneys who truly fight the power and rigorously confront corruption often end up, actually or metaphorically, in real life or at least as to their careers, as dead as the late, great Gary Welch. All of that said, I wish you the very best in finding a Hoosier attorney with a fighting spirit to press your rights as far as you can, for you do have rights against government actors, no matter what said actors may tell you otherwise. Attorneys outside the elitist camp are often better fighters that those owing the powers that be for their salaries, corner offices and end of year bonuses. So do not be afraid to retain a green horn or unconnected lawyer, many of them are fine men and woman who are yet untainted by the "unique" Hoosier system.

  5. I am not the John below. He is a journalist and talk show host who knows me through my years working in Kansas government. I did no ask John to post the note below ...

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