Cougar Bar & Grill
1689 Lewis River Rd
Cougar, Washington 98616
Nestled near the base of Mount St. Helens is a town where there’s more than just one type wildlife for one to hunt for. For some people, it’s like the last vestige of humanity before Big Foot comes knocking at your door or it’s the last resort for folks like me before I go venturing near a volcano that nearly blew off its top back in the 80’s.
There’s an aptly named Volcano Burger ($8.95) that I had to try at the Cougar Bar & Grill. For the chili lover, this meal can set you simmering with delight. For the hamburger lover, you’ll wonder what the fuss is about.
If there were a few veggies added to the meal and they were propped up to mimic a forest, I’d say the cooks here were making a statement. Culinary art would be imitating history. In this case, when there’s a lava flow coming your way, that forest is going to burn. I imagined the fries were the woods, and they were certainly crisped up nice.
But even without the vegetation for me to graze on, the chili and meat combo made for a perfect combination that you can’t eat with your hands. You gotta dig through it with a fork and knife.
And by the time enough chili is consumed, there should be one tasty piece of meat that’s finished simmering underneath all those spicy sauces.
Although the burger wasn’t all that juicy, it still tasted good under all that bacon and bean flavoured chili. Even both buns had a chance to soak up the sauces, the chili proved thick enough that the burger tasted pretty much au natural, with only a slightly added flavouring.
But if one wanted to try consuming the two patties of beef with a layer of chili in between, the melted cheddar made for an interesting delight. I could’ve tried eating the meal that way, but I was surprisingly civil that night. It was fork and knife down to the last bite.
I could’ve gone for a beer too but no, this meal packs a lot of protein for the most hardened of hikers.
I didn’t want to touch another meal for seven hours later, and that’s a record for me. What I needed to do was to take on some of the Sasquatch laden trails in this National Park and hope I don’t get eaten myself!
4 Blokes out of 5