Creative Insights, One Burger at a Time
I am a designer. By day my office defines brands, design campaigns, names companies and builds restaurants. We create logos and posters and books and websites and packages and exhibits and environments and films.
People often ask me where to find inspiration, how to stay creative, and how to get “unstuck.” What I’ve found is that, if you look at the world both critically and with wonder, there are lessons to be learned everywhere. Every object, experience, relationship, environment, phrase—everything—has locked inside it an insight it wants to share. The trick is remembering to look for it.
To investigate this idea, I’m eating a burger a week and sharing the lessons they teach us.
Other Ways to Follow This Project
Frequently Imagined Questions
We are MINE™, a San Francisco design office.
How do you decide where to eat?
I started by visiting places I know, have tried or want to try. Places that specialize in burgers (Super Duper, Roam, In-n-Out) will definitely get a visit, but I'll also visit hole-in-the wall greasy spoons, bars, food trucks and fine dining restaurants. Most will be in and around San Francisco.
How do you decide what to order?
Normally I eat with a colleague or friend. We always order the same thing (typically the establishment’s “signature” burger), then analyze and discuss it as we devour it.
How does the star ranking work?
You'll probably start to notice that some of the reviews seem more positive or negative than the stars seem to suggest. The reviews are generally about the lesson—not necessarily a comprehensive evaluation of the burger itself. The stars, on the other hand, are just about the burger.
★ Really bad—lacking in flavor, texture, quality. Not recommended.
★ ★ Acceptable—meets the minimum requirements needed to be considered edible.
★ ★ ★ Good (or very good). Quality ingredients, thoughtfully executed, enjoyable experience.
★ ★ ★ ★ Excellent. A top-notch burger for its class. One we would eat again.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Outstanding.
Do ‘gourmet’ burgers get a higher rating than fast-food burgers?
Not necessarily. In-n-Out makes a four star burger in my book. It’s all about being true to who you are, and true to the nature of the burger.
Are you going to eat at McDonald’s?
Eventually, reluctantly, [yes].
: http://www.themessageismediumrare.com/burgers/mcdonalds May I suggest a burger?
Yes please! Message us on Facebook or email me below. If I go and you’re local you can join.
Who photographs the burgers?
I do. Not bad, right?
Who writes the reviews?
All the reviews are written by me, Christopher Simmons, unless otherwise noted.
Do you have a newsletter or something I can sign up for?
Yes! Thanks so much for asking. Sign up here to get an email notification (with bonus content) when new reviews are posted.
So, this is going to be a book?
That's the plan, yes. These stories and lessons will be revised, edited, expanded and collected into some sort of publication—probably a book, but I'll let you know.
Haven’t I seen you on TV?
Yes. Squarespace was kind enough to ask me to be featured in their campaign for Squarespace 7 (which is beautiful, by the way). The ad debuted during the World Series (go Giants!).