Photo Illustration: Mariah Tyler (Sources: Getty Images & Alamy Stock Photo)

It’s called irony, people.

November 03, 2015

The Bowery used to be known as a haven for starving artists, but in recent years the Manhattan avenue has gone upscale with sleek hotels, pricy condos, and high-end boutiques. And now a new burger is paying homage to the past with a price tag aimed squarely at the street’s newest residents.  

PYT Burger, a recent addition on the Bowery, is selling a $64 Basquiat burger, named for Jean Michel Basquiat, the one-time street artist who rose to fame under his mentor, Andy Warhol. The burger is made with, as art magazine Hyperallergic put it, “American Kobe beef and the ground-up soul of the Lower East Side.”

This isn’t PYT Burger’s first dalliance in the world of exotic burgers. The six-year-old Philadelphia-based chain brought the world such items as a Cocoa Krispies–encrusted chicken burger; the “Doh! Nut” (a beef patty topped with American cheese and chocolate-covered bacon served on a glazed donut bun); a pizza-and-wings burger (a fried, hot sauce–spiked chicken burger sandwiched between two deep-fried slices of frozen pizza); and the infamous deep-fried Twinkie burger.

The PYT burger folks insist that the Basquiat burger isn’t just another stunt burger—it’s an ode to the artist who lived (and died) around the corner from their meat supplier, Japan Premium Beef, on Great Jones Street. Because of the local angle, the burger is only available at the Bowery location. Philadelphia eaters can console themselves with a Pickleback burger (that’s a whiskey-glazed burger topped with bacon and fried pickle slices) and an adult milkshake like the Peanut Butter Bacon Time, made with vanilla ice cream, vanilla vodka, real bacon, peanut butter, and whipped cream.

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