American Invasion

The ID gets a burger heaven all its own.

Go to Uwajimaya Village and surely you'll find the Vapors' "Turning Japanese" creeping into your head. Among the Japanese ceramics, Japanese books and magazines, and Japanese groceries, the most "un-Asian" thing you'll find at Uwajimaya is Washington Mutual—and now Mu Mu's. Most of the restaurants in Uwajimaya's food court are Asian-inspired: Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Thai. Mu Mu's stands alone. We found ourselves looking up at the colorful "Mu Mu's Burgers & Crepes" sign hesitantly, yet hungrily. Crepes? Although we weren't in the mood for crepes, they looked and sounded delicious, some with fruit and ice-cream fillings. But burgers were what we had our eyes on. The chalkboard menu offered Mu Mu's Classic and Double Classic burgers (optional cheese 50 cents more), a chicken sandwich, soft drinks, milk shakes, and various combos (with fries, a drink, etc.) My co-worker decided on the "classic" combo ($5.49); I splurged, ordering the chicken club combo ($7.49). We both jumped at the opportunity to substitute onion rings for fries (for an additional 50 cents) and were pleased with the results. The drinks were fountain style (free refills!), and the food came to us in a Styrofoam to-go box with a red and white checkered sheet of paper underneath the huge burger and flood of onion rings. We found a table among the business people and shoppers, presumably all on their lunch breaks. Between initial reactions of "whoa!" and "mmm!," we managed to take a breath to comment on our food. "This is so good—yummy sauces on my juicy burger" (ketchup, mayo, and mustard in addition to the tomato, onion, lettuce, and pickles) was the word on the Mu Mu Classic. The chicken club (served on a hamburger bun with chicken breast) wasn't bad, either; though the chicken was a little dry, the bacon and all the other condiments tasted great. The onion rings were fresh and not too greasy—and the onion didn't slide out of the deep-fried breaded shell. In addition to all-American burgers and European crepes, some of the sandwiches are Asian-tweaked after all. There is the wasabi burger (wasabi mayonnaise, avocado, tomato, and lettuce; $4.25) and the teriyaki burger ($3.75; also available with chicken for $4.99), which includes pineapple, tomato, lettuce, and mayo. (Mu Mu promises more burgers with an Asian twist soon.) Located at the heart of the International District, Mu Mu's is a new addition to the Uwajimaya food court that serves up a menu you'd have to walk a long way to find anywhere else in the area. The burger combos, ranging from $5.49 to $7.49, are reasonably priced for the large portions and are comparable to burgers at Red Robin. A bit different from the other restaurants in the food court, Mu Mu's still manages not to forget where it is. Mu Mu's Burgers & Crepes, 604 Fifth Ave. S., 206-264-7800, INTERNATIONAL DISTRICT $. Open 10 a.m.-8 p.m. daily.

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