You’re a dirty burger: Upstairs at Campagnolo

Inspired by this thread on Chowhound, I had to check out the reincarnated Refuel Dirty Burger at Upstairs at Campagnolo, the newly-opened upstairs speakeasy/lounge/bar next to Campagnolo on Main St. I never got to try the original Refuel burger…so with no point of comparison, does the Dirty Burger at Upstairs taste good?


Campagnolo on the left, green door to Upstairs at Campagnolo on the right!


Just look for the symbol!


Today’s menu. Enticing bar snacks ranging from nibbles to heftier fare like the burger and corndogs(!). The room was small, laid back, with a real speakeasy kinda vibe. Another top spot for a Main St. beer/food crawl.


Small beer list but they do carry some Brassneck beers in small growlers. Fat Tug and East Side Bitter on tap are solid choices.


Cocktails, if you’re into that sorta thing.


Thick-cut and very tasty beef jerky with an R&B East Side Bitter. The ESB is a good go-to if there’s nothing else available. The jerky had hints of soy sauce and sweet chili sauce. I have no idea what’s actually in their jerky marinade though. I’d get it again (and again).


Crunchy cracklings! So good! Dunno about the “cheezie” part…I guess the texture and crunch is a bit like Hawkins Cheezies except using pork skin and fat instead of cornmeal! I don’t remember any cheese flavour. I appreciated that they were undersalted…kinda au naturel flavour. (N. later told me that the cracklings were perhaps coated in cheese powder.)


Great pickles. Good sourness and crunch. Cucumbers, cauliflower, carrots, celery.


Burger time! (har har) Here’s the infamous Dirty Burger. Not too sure about the details but supposedly 40-day dry(?) aged beef in a housemade bun that’s been fried in butter/lard. Bit more info here:


Comes with really really good fries. These are way up my alley…crunchy/crispy on the outside, smooth and creamyish on the inside.


The bun was quite fried so it was a little crunchy on the outside. I’d prefer a little less crunchiness on the outside of the bun, but it didn’t cause any major problems in the actual eating of the burger.

I love loosely-packed patties like this one. Nice char on the outside. Char + beef + juiciness = great burger.

The Dirty Burger at Upstairs at Campagnolo
The Dirty Burger at Upstairs at Campagnolo

Glorious beefy goodness. I really enjoyed the taste of the beef. Good size too. I didn’t feel too heavy or full afterwards. I could enjoy jerky, cracklings AND a burger with a beer and walk away feeling light and dainty! $8.50 for this burger is an EXTREMELY fair price…bordering on “are you kidding?!”

Possible “customizations” for next time: make it a double, cooked rare but seared only on one side then slap it raw sides together in the burger, omit the cheese.

I must return to try their mortadella corndogs!

Upstairs @ Campagnolo on Urbanspoon

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