Satellite Room’s new burger menu honors noted vegan Ian MacKaye

Satellite Room has a new menu of burgers inspired by D.C. notables, including one which won't sound so delicious to its namesake. Inspired by a banh mi, the Ian MacKaye is a six-ounce beef patty with chicken liver mousse, pickled daikon and carrot, cilantro aioli and, for $1, an egg. But here's the thing: The Dischord Records founder and legendary Minor Threat and Fugazi frontman is a vegan.

Satellite Room's nw burgers, clockwise: The Chuck Brown, the Joan Jett, the Henry Rollins, and the Kenny G.
Satellite Room's new burgers, clockwise from top: The Chuck Brown, the Joan Jett, the Henry Rollins, and the Kenny G. (Photo: Crystal Herman)

"I've never been to [Satellite Room] (in fact, never really heard of it) and wasn't aware that there was a sandwich bearing my name being offered until yesterday," MacKaye wrote in an e-mail. "[I] would hope that regardless if it bears my name or someone else's, that they have at least one vegan option!"

For $1 extra, diners can replace the beef burger with a black bean patty, but a restaurant spokesperson said the patty is vegetarian, not vegan.

MacKaye's plant-based diet traces back to the Straight Edge movement, whose adherents reject drug and alcohol use. He has spoken about vegetarianism in interviews. "In my mind, being vegetarian was a logical extension of Straight Edge because you just think of the things that you're putting in your body," MacKaye said in the movie "Edge."

Satellite Room's menu also pays tribute to other local musicians with geographic non-sequiturs. The Chuck Brown burger, (which wastes a good opportunity for a pun on the word chuck) is a Southwestern burger with roasted poblanos, chipotle aioli, avocado, and pepper jack cheese; the Henry Rollins burger transports the D.C. native to Canada, with a poutine burger topped by cheese curds and french fries.

The restaurant spokesperson said there's no specific reasoning behind the ingredient-celebrity matchups, with the exception of the Dave Grohl (with roasted red peppers, goat cheese and arugula, it has a California vibe -- though wouldn't Seattle have been more appropriate?), the Kenny G (it's plain and boring), and the Big Tony (as a double bacon cheeseburger, it's big, duh).

You can see the full menu, which will make its official debut on Sept. 5, below.

Satellite Room Dinner Menu

Maura Judkis covers culture, food, and the arts for the Weekend section and Going Out Guide.



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